If you’re in the process of buying a home, you might have come across the term FHA mortgage insurance.
In this blog, we’ll take a closer look at what FHA mortgage insurance is. We’ll also get into how it works, and everything else you need to know about this type of insurance.
What is FHA Mortgage Insurance?
FHA mortgage insurance is a form of insurance designed to protect lenders if a borrower defaults on their FHA loan. FHA refers to the Federal Housing Administration, a government agency providing mortgage insurance to lenders.
The FHA’s role is to help make homeownership more accessible to people who may not be able to qualify for conventional mortgages.
FHA mortgage insurance is necessary for all FHA loans, irrespective of the size of the down payment. This insurance differs from other types of mortgage insurance, such as private mortgage insurance (PMI), which is required for conventional loans with a down payment of less than 20%.
The FHA mortgage insurance premium (MIP) is the amount that borrowers pay for this insurance.
How Much is an FHA Mortgage Insurance Premium?
FHA mortgage insurance premiums (MIP) cost varies based on the loan amount, loan term, and down payment percentage.
For most FHA loans, borrowers pay an annual MIP of 0.85% of the loan amount. However, borrowers with a down payment of at least 10% pay a lower MIP of 0.45%. Additionally, borrowers must pay an upfront MIP, which is 1.75% of the loan amount.
For example, if you take out a $200,000 FHA loan with a 3.5% down payment, you will be required to pay an upfront MIP of $3,500 and an annual MIP of $1,530. Over the life of the loan, you would pay a total of $57,300 in MIP.
How Long Do You Have to Pay for FHA Loan Insurance?
The length of time that you are required to pay for FHA loan insurance depends on the loan term and the down payment percentage.
For most FHA loans, borrowers are required to pay MIP for the entire duration of the loan. However, if you put down at least 10%, you may be eligible to have the MIP removed after 11 years.
If you want to have the MIP removed earlier, you may be able to refinance your FHA loan into a conventional loan. You don’t need mortgage insurance with conventional loans if you have at least 20% equity in the property.
Can You Avoid the Mortgage Insurance?
There are a few ways to avoid paying FHA mortgage insurance.
The first is to make a down payment of at least 20%. With a down payment of 20% or more, you can be eligible for a conventional loan that doesn’t require mortgage insurance.
Another option is to refinance your FHA loan into a conventional loan once you have built up enough equity in your home. You need to have at least 20% equity in your property and a high credit score.
Finally, you may be able to avoid paying MIP by using a piggyback loan. A piggyback loan is a second mortgage that is taken out at the same time as the first mortgage.
With a piggyback loan, you can make a smaller down payment and avoid paying MIP. However, piggyback loans often come with higher interest rates and fees, so you should carefully consider whether this option is right for you.
FHA mortgage insurance is a program that helps borrowers obtain financing for a home purchase with a lower down payment. The cost of the insurance premium is based on the loan amount, loan term, and down payment percentage.
Borrowers are required to pay an upfront MIP and an annual MIP, which can add significant costs to the loan. However, borrowers may be able to avoid paying MIP by making a down payment of at least 20%, refinancing into a conventional loan, or using a piggyback loan.
Before deciding on a mortgage, it’s important to carefully consider all your options and choose the one that best meets your needs and financial situation.
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