What Conventional Loan Programs does CalHFA offer?
CalHFA offers the following conventional loan programs:
Fannie Mae HFA Preferred™ fully amortized thirty (30) year fixed interest rate first mortgage. This loan is combined with the CalHFA Conventional Zero Interest Program (ZIP) for closing cost and/or prepaid items only.
- The Conventional ZIP second loan is only available with CalPLUS and is a silent second loan for either 2.00% or 3.00% of the first mortgage loan amount. The interest rate is zero percent (0.00%) and the payment(s) are deferred for the life of the first mortgage or until the property is transferred or the first mortgage loan is refinanced.
- This CalPLUS loan may be combined with the MyHome Assistance Program (MyHome).
Fannie Mae HFA Preferred™ fully amortized thirty (30) year fixed interest rate first mortgage. This loan may be combined with the MyHome Assistance Program (MyHome). When no CalHFA down payment and/or closing cost assistance subordinate loan programs are being used with the CalHFA Conventional first mortgage loan, the first mortgage loan may be eligible for a lower interest rate.
Who can originate CalHFA Conventional loan programs?
Lender Eligibility Requirements
To be eligible for this program lenders must be approved by:
- Fannie Mae or have access to HFA Preferred through a DO sponsorship
- Lakeview Loan Servicing (LLS), CalHFA’s master servicer.
› To seek LLS approval contact the Counterparty Risk Management team at CRM@Lakeviewloanservicing.com
My borrower(s) owns a rental property; can they keep the property and still be eligible for CalHFA conventional loan programs?
Yes, if they meet CalHFA’s first-time homebuyer definition.
My borrower is not a first-time homebuyer, is the borrower still eligible for CalHFA conventional loan programs?
No, all borrowers must be first-time homebuyers. Please refer to Major Disaster Declaration for exceptions.
This program is available for both first-time and non-first-time homebuyers; however, when CalHFA subordinate financing is included all borrowers must be first-time homebuyers
Do I need to make a reservation in the Mortgage Access System (MAS) before submitting a loan file to CalHFA?
Yes. The CalHFA-approved lender must make a reservation in MAS prior to loan submission.
Does CalHFA allow additional subordinate financing with the conventional loan programs?
Yes. The MyHome Assistance Program may be layered. Community Second subordinate loan programs may be layered if they will go into subordinate lien position. In the case of conflicting guidelines, the more restrictive will apply.
What areas of California are eligible for CalHFA financing?
CalHFA conventional loan programs are state-wide programs. Properties located anywhere within the State of California may be eligible for the program.
Are there sales price limits on CalHFA conventional loan programs?
No, there are no sales price limits on CalHFA conventional loan programs.
What is the maximum loan amount for CalHFA conventional loan programs?
The maximum total loan amount cannot exceed Fannie Mae loan limits.
Fannie Mae High Balance Loan Limits
All loans with a loan amount exceeding the Fannie Mae loan limit will be subject to an additional fee. See CalHFA rate sheet for applicable fees.
Maximum LTV for Fannie Mae High Balance Loan Limits: 95.00%
All Fannie Mae High Balance Loan fees will be net funded at the time of first mortgage purchase by the master servicer.
Are condominiums eligible for CalHFA conventional loan programs? Yes per Fannie Mae guidelines
Is a manufactured home eligible for CalHFA conventional loan programs?
Yes, manufactured homes are permitted per Fannie Mae MH Advantage and Fannie Mae Standard MH with the following parameters:
- Singlewide manufactured homes are not eligible
- Fannie Mae Desktop Underwriter® (DU®) Approve/Eligible findings only – no manual underwriting
- Leasehold properties are not eligible
Appraisal for MH Advantage requires picture of MH Advantage Sticker
What automated underwriting engines do you allow for CalHFA conventional loan programs?
CalHFA will only accept the most recent version of Fannie Mae’s Desktop Underwriter® (DU®) with the HFA Preferred™ option.
What is the maximum DTI allowed on CalHFA Conventional loans?
The maximum total Debt-to-Income (DTI) ratio cannot exceed 45.00% regardless of automated underwriting decision or compensating factors. MCC may not be used for credit qualifying purposes.
What are the minimum credit score requirements for CalHFA conventional loan programs?
- The minimum credit score is 680 for borrowers with income greater than the HomeReady 80% Area Median Income (AMI) LI income limit
- The minimum credit score is 660 for borrowers with income less than or equal to HomeReady 80% AMI LI income limit.
Does CalHFA use the lowest credit score to determine the minimum representative credit score?
No. The middle score of the lowest scoring borrower is used to determine eligibility.
- If a tri-merged credit report is used, use the middle score
- If a merged credit report only returns two scores, use the lower score
- If a merged credit report only returns one score, that score must be used
My borrower only has one credit score. Is that okay for CalHFA conventional loan programs?
Yes, one credit score is acceptable with DU Approve/Eligible findings.
Do all borrowers need to meet the minimum credit score requirement for CalHFA conventional loan programs?
Yes, all borrowers must meet the minimum credit score requirement.
Can I use Non-Traditional credit?
No, non-traditional credit is not eligible.
Is manual underwriting permitted on CalHFA conventional loan programs?
No. Manual underwriting is not permitted.
What is the maximum age of credit documents on CalHFA conventional loan programs?
CalHFA will follow Fannie Mae guidelines for the age of the credit documents.
What is the maximum LTV/CLTV on CalHFA conventional loan programs?
The maximum LTV is 97.00%. The maximum CLTV is 105%.
- Maximum LTV for Fannie Mae High Balance Loan Limits: 95.00% Can I use the ZIP for down payment?
No. The Conventional ZIP second loan is only available with CalPLUS and may be used for closing cost and/or prepaid items only. ZIP may not be used for down payment or debt payoff. If there are remaining funds due the borrower from the ZIP loan, the funds must be applied as a principal reduction.
What fees and related charges are allowed for CalHFA conventional loan programs?
- Customary lender origination fees not to exceed the greater of 3% of the loan amount or $3,000
- Other customary third-party fees such as the credit report fee, appraisal fee, insurance fee or similar settlement or financing cost. No additional fees are allowed for ZIP
- $250 funding fee (payable to CalHFA’s master servicer)
- $75 tax Service Fee (payable to CalHFA’s master servicer)
- $10 Life of Loan Flood Certification Fee (payable to CalHFA’s master servicer)
- In all cases the lender must meet federal and California lending laws regarding fees and charges.
Does the Federal Recapture Tax apply on CalHFA conventional loan programs?
No. Federal Recapture Tax does not apply.
Is homebuyer education required on CalHFA conventional loan programs?
Yes. Homebuyer Education and Counseling is required for one occupying first-time homebuyer. Homebuyer Education and Counseling is not required for non-first-time homebuyer(s).
- Online Homebuyer Education through eHome™
- Face-to-Face Homebuyer Education through NeighborWorks America or through one of the HUD approved Housing Counseling Agencies
Is a temporary buydown available on CalHFA conventional loan programs?
2-1 temporary buydowns are permitted
- Follow the master servicer guidelines
- The borrower must be qualified based on the note rate,
Will non-occupant co-signers or non-occupant co-borrowers be allowed on CalHFA conventional loan programs?
No, non-occupant co-signers and non-occupant co-borrowers are not permitted.