7 min read Jun 21, 2024

How to Buy a House in Pennsylvania With Bad Credit in 2024?

In the last two decades, only half, or more specifically, 61.43% of the Pennsylvania population have had their mortgage applications approved. This means about half of them are denied a mortgage. And 53% are rejected primarily because of their low credit scores. Did they give up on their dream of owning a home in Pennsylvania?

The answer is a resounding NO! So, you shouldn’t either.

In 2024, a low credit score doesn’t bar you from buying your dream home in the Coal State. The key is to find one that ticks all your boxes, within your budget.

Find Your Dream Home 🏡

View 8,939 Homes For Sale in Pennsylvania

Where do you want to live?

Please enter valid address

How to Buy a House in Pennsylvania With Bad Credit in 5 Easy Steps

Here are 5 steps to help you buy a house with bad credit in Pennsylvania:

Step 1: Analyze Your Credit Score

Take a look at your credit score before applying for a mortgage in PA:

  • Get Your Credit Reports: You can request a free copy of your reports once a year from AnnualCreditReport.com.
  • Review Your Credit Reports: Examine each credit report for errors or inaccuracies. Check for late payments, defaults, or negative marks that impact your credit score.
  • Dispute Errors and Inaccuracies: To rectify errors on your credit report, dispute them with your credit bureau. Request deletion or correction of inaccuracies and provide evidence to support your claim.

Step 2: Explore Bad Credit Mortgage Loan Options

Certain loans don’t have the flexibility to accommodate a bad credit score. However, here are some alternative options in Pennsylvania to help you with your poor credit:

Loan ProgramMinimum Credit Score
Conventional Loans620
FHA Loans500 - 580
VA LoansNone
USDA LoansNone
  • Conventional Loans: These loans are not backed by the government. Instead, private lenders such as banks and credit unions offer them.
  • FHA Loans: The Federal Housing Administration backs FHA Loans. These loans have lower down payment requirements due to more flexible credit criteria. This government-backed loan especially benefits first-time home buyers.
  • VA Loans: The Department of Veterans Affairs provides VA loans for eligible veterans, active-duty service members, and their spouses. These loans often have more lenient credit requirements and may not require a down payment.
  • USDA Loans: The U.S. Department of Agriculture offers USDA loans to encourage homeownership in rural areas. These loans have flexible credit guidelines and may offer low or no down payment options.

Step 3: Get a Mortgage Pre Approval

A mortgage preapproval can tell you if you qualify for a loan. Additionally, you also get to know your mortgage interest rate and monthly payments. This way, you can manage your finances better.

Mortgage preapproval shows Pennsylvania home sellers that you are a serious buyer who won’t waste their time. Contact a lender to begin the process even if you are unsure about your loan eligibility.

Step 4: Track Your Expenses

A credit score is not the only criterion that a mortgage lender considers in Pennsylvania. Other factors, like income, savings, and previous loans, are also significant.

Create a budget to manage your finances. This helps you track your income, expenses, and savings goals. A well-managed budget can show lenders that you are responsible and capable of meeting mortgage obligations.

Step 5: Avoid Making Credit Mistakes

Before buying a property in Pennsylvania, you might not have enough time to improve your credit score. However, you can follow these tips and avoid the common mistakes that could harm your chances of obtaining a mortgage.

  • Pay Your Bills on Time: Late or missed payments negatively impact your credit score. Use reminders or automatic payments to stay on track.
  • Don’t Open Multiple Accounts: When you open multiple accounts, the lender will carry out a hard credit check on all of them. Each hard inquiry temporarily lowers your credit score.
  • Avoid Closing Existing Accounts:  Closing old credit accounts may reduce your available credit and shorten your credit history. This can negatively impact your credit score. Retain existing accounts to maintain a healthy credit profile.
  • Don’t Use All Available Credit: Aim to keep credit card balances below 30% of the available limit. This helps maintain a healthy credit usage ratio and can boost your credit score.
    🤔 What Is a Hard Credit Check? A hard credit check is a detailed review of your credit history. This is commonly done by lenders during loan or other credit applications and can impact your credit score.

How to Get a Home Loan in Pennsylvania With Bad Credit?

Here are some ways you can get the best home loans for bad credit in Pennsylvania:

1. Build up Your Credit Score

Improve your credit score before applying for a mortgage in the Coal State. Pay your bills on time, minimize debt, and correct any errors on your credit record. Small improvements in your credit score can make a big difference on your mortgage.

Another strategy to improve your score is to keep your credit use low. Keep your credit card balances under 30% of your maximum credit limit.

» How to Fix My Credit to Buy a House: Here are the 8 proven strategies to quickly repair your credit score.

2. Save for a Larger Down Payment

Even with a poor credit score, you may be able to obtain a mortgage with a good down payment. A greater down payment lowers the loan-to-value ratio. Therefore, lenders may grant you a loan despite poor credit.

3. Find a Co-Signer

Request a trusted individual with a good credit score to co-sign the loan. Their creditworthiness can strengthen your application and increase your chances of approval. However, they also take responsibility for the co-signed mortgage.

4. Shop Around

Shopping around for a home loan in Pennsylvania is important if you have bad credit. It helps you find different lenders who might be okay with your credit score. You can choose the lender that best fits your requirements based on the interest rates and monthly mortgage payments.

Find Mortgage Lenders Near You

View 8+ Lenders in Pennsylvania

Are There Any Drawbacks If You Buy a House in Pennsylvania With a Bad Credit?

Yes, buying a house with bad credit does come with certain disadvantages:

  • Limited Loan Options: Many traditional lenders in Pennsylvania might not offer loans to individuals with low credit scores. You may need to look for loan programs developed only for bad credit holders.
  • Higher Down Payment Requirements: A higher down payment reduces the risk the lender undertakes when issuing the loan. Saving for a larger down payment can be tough, especially with existing financial challenges.
  • Higher Interest Rates: Lenders see individuals with bad credit as risky borrowers. Consequently, they might charge you a higher interest rate. This will raise the total borrowing cost and increase your monthly mortgage payments.

Bottom Line

While buying a house in the Coal State with bad credit is difficult, it’s not impossible. By carefully exploring loan options and lenders, you can find your path to homeownership.

To help offset the high interest rates and down payments that come with bad credit in Pennsylvania, broaden your house hunt to include some of America’s most affordable locations. This way, you can find a home that fits comfortably within your budget.

Find Homes For Sale in Pennsylvania by Cities

Home prices vary depending on the city you choose in Pennsylvania. Here’s a glimpse into some resources that can help you explore city-specific housing markets:

Homes for Sale in
Philadelphia, PA
Homes for Sale in
Harrisburg, PA
Homes for Sale in
Lebanon, PA
Homes for Sale in
Chambersburg, PA
Homes for Sale in
Upper Darby, PA
Homes for Sale in
York, PA
Homes for Sale in
Reading, PA
Homes for Sale in
Gettysburg, PA
Homes for Sale in
Chester, PA
Homes for Sale in
Lititz, PA
Homes for Sale in
Mechanicsburg, PA
Homes for Sale in
West Chester, PA
Homes for Sale in
Norristown, PA
Homes for Sale in
Doylestown, PA
Homes for Sale in
New Hope, PA
Homes for Sale in
Lancaster, PA
Homes for Sale in
Hanover, PA
Homes for Sale in
Carlisle, PA
Homes for Sale in
Newtown Square, PA
Homes for Sale in
Jonesboro, PA

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I get an FHA loan in Pennsylvania with a 500 credit score?

No, it is unlikely to qualify for an FHA loan in Pennsylvania with a credit score of 500. The minimum credit score requirement for most FHA loans is 580.

What do mortgage lenders consider a poor credit score in Pennsylvania?

The required credit scores for mortgages in Pennsylvania differ based on the type of loan. Conventional loans demand a score of 620, while government-backed loans are more lenient. However, a score below 500 makes mortgage approval difficult.

How to buy a foreclosed house in Pennsylvania with bad credit?

Explore specialized lenders and consider FHA loans in Pennsylvania. Additionally, save for a larger down payment and work on improving your credit score for better terms.

Can I buy a house with bad credit in Pennsylvania?

Yes, government-backed loans like FHA or VA loans offer more lenient credit requirements. Consider a larger down payment or a co-signer to qualify for a mortgage with bad credit.


Save $39

Only on Gold and Platinum plans

Use Coupon Code:

4.9 out of 5 Star Rated Houzeo Concierge

Need help? Call us on

(844) 448-0110