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Louisiana mortgage rates

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First-time homebuyer programs in Louisiana

The Louisiana Housing Corporation (LHC) works with homebuyers, lenders, real estate agents and homebuyer counselors to help residents of the Pelican State become homeowners. The LHC offers prospective homebuyers a number of programs ranging from financial assistance to federal tax credits to help with buying a home.

With the exception of the Delta 100 program, the minimum credit score requirement for each of the LHC’s programs is 640.

More: Get a free credit score and credit monitoring from Credit Sesame.

To apply for assistance from one of the LHC’s programs, you’ll identify your annual income and purchase price maximums, then work with an approved mortgage lender to get pre-approved for a mortgage loan.

Once you’ve found a home that meets the eligibility requirements, you’ll return to your lender to apply for your loan. Your loan officer will then make a request to the LHC to reserve the assistance funds and walk you through the rest of the process to closing.

LHC Market Rate Conventional program

The LHC offers conventional mortgage loans at competitive 30-year fixed rates to eligible Louisiana residents through its Market Rate Conventional program. The program is open to both first-time and repeat homebuyers with incomes no higher than 80% of the area median income (AMI) by parish and household size.

The program offers assistance worth up to 4% of the home’s purchase price. The funds can be used for your down payment, closing costs and/or prepaid items, and they come with a reduced mortgage insurance rate and no origination fees, additional bond documents or compliance package.

To qualify, a property must be a single-family home in Louisiana with a maximum purchase price of $453,100. The first-time homebuyers must participate in a homebuyer education program.

LHC Market Rate GNMA program

Through the Market Rate GNMA program, LHC offers 30-year, fixed-rate FHA, VA or USDA mortgages for single-family homes at favorable interest rates.

The program also offers up to 4% assistance for down payment, closing costs and/or prepaid items, with no origination fees or additional bond documents, and no compliance package.

Eligible homebuyers can bring in a household income of up to 115% of the area median income.

LHC Mortgage Revenue Bond (MRB) Assisted program

The Mortgage Revenue Bond Assisted Program offers prospective homeowners funds to help with their down payments and closing costs. Qualified applicants can get a loan of up to 4% of their purchase price with interest rates that are generally at market level. Borrowers using a conventional loan are offered a reduced mortgage insurance rate.

This program is reserved for first-time homebuyers, unless the property is in a targeted area of Louisiana, which your lender can help you identify. Buyers must meet local income requirements, and the purchase price can’t exceed the established limits for the program; details are available on the website for the MRB program.

More: Use these savings accounts to build up your down payment.

LHC Mortgage Revenue Bond (MRB) Home program

The Mortgage Revenue Bond Home Program helps with down payment and closing costs if a homebuyer earns 80% or less of the area median income. Like the MRB Assisted program, the money is reserved for first-time homebuyers in Louisiana. However, through the Home program, you may access a loan that ranges from 5% to 9% of your home’s purchase price.

And as with the MRB Assisted program, you’ll have to follow the income and purchase price guidelines for your parish.

LHC Delta 100 program

This program is designed to help selected first-time homebuyers in the Mississippi Delta parishes of Louisiana who don’t meet the traditional credit score requirements to secure a mortgage, but who have shown they have the ability, willingness and commitment to become a homeowner.

The LHC will provide qualified homebuyers with up to 100% financing (potentially meaning no down payment) and up to 3% of the home’s sale price for closing cost assistance. Mortgage insurance isn’t required with these loans.

Eligible first-time homebuyers in the parishes will be offered 30-year, 2% fixed interest rate loans. While there’s no minimum credit score, a homebuyer must be purchasing a single-family home in the Delta region, and will have to contribute either 1% of the purchase price or $1,500 of the buyer’s own funds. (Gifts are not allowed.) Applicants also will have to complete a homebuyer education course.

With the Delta 100 program, the maximum loan a homebuyer can take out is $242,000, and the maximum for household income is $99,000.

LHC Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC) program

This statewide program is designed to help first-time homebuyers, veterans and low- to moderate-income borrowers buy homes in designated areas. The MCC program offers homebuyers up to 40% of the annual mortgage interest they pay (to a maximum $2,000) as a direct credit on their federal taxes for the life of the loan. You’ll have access to this tax credit as long as the home remains your primary residence.

With the MCC, there are purchase price limits and income limits that range by region. You can use a mortgage credit certificate with all of the LHC’s other first-time homebuyer programs, with the exception of the Mortgage Revenue Bond program.

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About the Author

Sigrid Forberg

Sigrid Forberg

Associate Editor

Sigrid’s is Moneywise.com's associate editor, and she has also worked as a reporter and staff writer on the Moneywise team.

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