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FHA Loans vs. Conventional Home Loans

The main difference between a FHA Loan and a Conventional Home Loan is that a FHA loan allows for a lower down payment, and the credit qualifying criteria for a borrower is not as strict. This allows those without much credit history, or with minor credit problems to buy a home. FHA requires a reasonable explanation of any derogatory items, but may use more "common sense" credit underwriting. Some borrowers, with extenuating circumstances may find more lenient underwriting such as requirements regarding bankruptcy discharge time and late payment explanations. FHA can be more flexible regarding past credit problems and lower credit scores that result from that.

Conventional financing relies heavily upon credit scoring, a rating given by a credit bureau such as Experian, Trans-Union or Equifax. If your score is below the minimum standards, you simply may not qualify for Conventional Financing.

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