BEST OF

Best Lenders for FHA Loans in February 2023

FHA loans have down payment requirements as low as 3.5%. Compare some of the top FHA lenders to find the right fit for your needs.

By Barbara Marquand 

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You might think all Federal Housing Administration-approved lenders are the same. But when you’re looking for an FHA loan, it’s smart to compare at least three lenders to find the best deal. Mortgage rates and fees vary among lenders, as do requirements for borrowers.

NerdWallet has picked some of the best FHA lenders in a variety of categories to help you get started.

Best Lenders for FHA Loans in February 2023

Qualifying for an FHA loan

To qualify for an FHA loan, you'll need a credit score of at least 580 for the lowest FHA down payment of 3.5% and a score of 500 with a 10% down payment. FHA loans allow a debt-to-income ratio of up to 43%, and in some cases there may be a bit more flexibility.

In addition to money for your down payment, you'll also need funds to cover FHA closing costs and an upfront mortgage insurance premium, which for FHA borrowers is 1.75% of the loan amount. Both the upfront mortgage insurance premium and the closing costs can be rolled into the total amount of the mortgage.

Bear in mind that these are the Federal Housing Administration's qualification guidelines; individual lenders can impose stricter rules. That's one reason it's worth comparing several lenders. You can start with the lenders we have here, but you can also browse the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's searchable list of approved FHA lenders.

Are FHA loans only for first-time home buyers?

You do not need to be a first-time home buyer to use an FHA loan. Lower minimum credit score and down payment requirements make FHA loans attractive to first-time home buyers, but current homeowners are eligible, too.

Can you get an FHA loan if you have student loans?

You can get an FHA loan if you have student loan debt, as long as you meet FHA debt-to-income requirements. FHA student loan guidelines state that lenders must include all student loans when calculating a borrower's debt-to-income ratio. If your payments are currently deferred, your lender will consider your "monthly obligation" to be 0.5% of your total student loan balance.

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Last updated on January 3, 2023

Methodology

The star ratings on this page reflect each lender's performance in NerdWallet’s FHA loans category. We scored the category and chose lenders for this page using the following methodology:

NerdWallet reviewed more than 50 mortgage lenders, including the majority of the largest U.S. mortgage lenders by annual loan volume (measured among lenders with at least a 1% market share), lenders with significant online search volume and those that specialize in serving various audiences across the country. We rated them on criteria including rate transparency, loan types offered, ease of application and more.

Some of the providers are NerdWallet partners, but this did not influence our selections.

All reviewed mortgage lenders that offer FHA loans were evaluated based on (1) the portion of their business dedicated to FHA lending, (2) their FHA origination fees, (3) the range of FHA loans offered, (4) their rate transparency and (5) the ease of their online application. The highest scoring lenders appear on this page.

NerdWallet solicits information from reviewed lenders on a recurring basis throughout the year. All lender-provided information is verified through lender websites and interviews. We also utilized 2021 HMDA data for origination volume, origination fee, average interest rate and share-of-product data.

To recap our selections...

NerdWallet's Best Lenders for FHA Loans in February 2023

Frequently asked questions