Frequently Asked Questions

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Down Payment Assistance

 

DOES THF HAVE A MINIMUM CREDIT SCORE?

For loan requests under $10,000, the minimum credit score is 600.  For loan requests between $10,000 and $35,000, the minimum credit score guideline is 620.  However, we encourage those with less than that to apply as we may be able to provide specific actions that can be taken to improve their credit score to meet our credit requirements.

HOW DO I APPLY FOR DOWN PAYMENT ASSISTANCE?

Once you are approved by a first mortgage lender (who must be FHA approved in Tennessee), you will notify them that you would like to use THF for down payment assistance. Next, you will fill out a THF application and give it to your first mortgage lender. They will send your packet of information about your loan, including your application, to THF. The list of documents we will need from the first mortgage lender can be found here in the underwriting checklist.

DO YOU HAVE A LIST OF APPROVED LENDERS?

Any lender that is FHA approved in the state of Tennessee can use the down payment assistance program, in addition to our investing partners.

HOW LONG WILL THE APPLICATION PROCESS TAKE?

Once the application and ALL of the supporting documents are received from the first mortgage lender, we need 5-7 business days to complete the underwriting process. If the information packet is incomplete, the process could take longer.

DO I HAVE TO BE A FIRST TIME HOMEBUYER?

No.

HOW DO I KNOW IF I AM ELIGIBLE?

  1. Please check our eligibility requirements here.

 

WHERE DOES THIS PROGRAM TAKE PLACE?

 We provide DPA loans across the entire state of Tennessee.

WHAT ARE THE INTEREST RATES FOR DPA LOANS?

The interest rate for DPA loans is dependent on which income category that you fall into. If you are at or below 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI), the interest rate is 5%. If you are at or below 100% AMI, the interest rate is 9%. If you are at or below 120% AMI, the interest rate is 10%.

DO YOU HAVE DOWN PAYMENT ASSISTANCE GRANTS?

No. All of our DPA loans must be paid back.

 

DO YOU PROVIDE 1ST MORTGAGES FOR HOMEOWNERS?

 
No.  We can provide up to $35,000 in down payment assistance to qualified borrowers who receive first mortgage financing from a Tennessee approved FHA approved lender.

Shared Equity Homeownership

 

WHAT IS SHARED EQUITY?

The Shared Equity program invests equity in your home that equals about 25% of the home’s value. The mission of Shared Equity is to help low- and moderate-income households experience the benefit of homeownership through permanently affordable homes to promote sound, stable, and successful homeownership.

DO YOU HAVE A LIST OF APPROVED LENDERS?

 THF works exclusively with Citizens Bank, Pinnacle Financial Partners, and FirstBank for lending in our Shared Equity program.

HOW DO I KNOW IF I AM ELIGIBLE?

Please check our eligibility requirements here.

DOES THIS PROGRAM HAVE A MINIMUM CREDIT SCORE?

The lenders that THF works with for Shared Equity have different credit requirements than THF. The minimum credit score for Pinnacle Financial Partners is 650, for FirstBank it is 630, and for Citizens Bank it is 620.

HOW DO I APPLY FOR SHARED EQUITY?

  1. Participate in a Shared Equity introductory meeting/session
  2. Qualify for a first mortgage loan with a Shared Equity permitted lender
  3. Meet the income criteria for Shared Equity
  4. Qualify for the Shared Equity investment
  5. Complete 8-hours of THDA homebuyer education
  6. Complete 2 hours of Shared Equity education

HOW LONG WILL THE APPLICATION PROCESS TAKE?

Once THF receives a complete information packet from your first mortgage lender, it will take 7-10 business days to process before approval.

IF I PURCHASE A HOME THROUGH SHARED EQUITY, CAN I MAKE HOME IMPROVEMENTS?

Yes, when you make certain improvements to your home, we want you to keep 100% of the capital improvement value added through those improvements. THF does not share in any of the capital improvement.

CAN I USE MY OWN TITLE COMPANY?

No, we work exclusively with Providence Title for our Shared Equity program.

WHY IS THERE A $50 MONTHLY FEE?

It is a stewardship fee that allows us to provide support after the home has been purchased.

WHERE CAN I PURCHASE A HOME USING SHARED EQUITY?

We offer Shared Equity across the state of Tennessee.

WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR PAYING THE MAINTENANCE, INSURANCE, AND PROPERTY TAXES?

The homeowner is responsible for 100% of ownership costs of the home. This includes paying the mortgage, taxes, repairs, regular maintenance, and insurance to protect the property.

CAN I BUY OUT THE THF 25% INVESTMENT?

No. The Housing Fund makes an investment in these homes to keep them permanently affordable and gives others the same opportunity that Shared Equity gave you, paying it forward.

WHEN USING SHARED EQUITY, CAN I REFINANCE FOR A RATE AND TERM WITHOUT PAYING THE HOUSING FUND?

Yes, in most cases. You must inform THF so that we can ensure that you are not putting yourself in a vulnerable position by taking on more debt than you can reasonably afford.

Grants

 

DO YOU HAVE GRANT FUNDS AVAILABLE?

We currently have two grants available: The Housing Resiliency Fund for both homeowners and landlords, providing property tax relief. Click here for more information on The Housing Resiliency Fund.

We also have a Metro ARP grant to help with mortgage and rental assistance. This is to help individuals whose employment/income has been impacted by COVID. The grant can be used for first or second mortgage assistance, rent, or utility assistance. For more information on the Metro ARP grant, click here.

DO YOU PROVIDE RENTAL ASSISTANCE?

We currently have one grant that can be utilized for rental assistance: The Metro ARP grant. Click here for more information.

Lenders

 

IS THE HOUSING FUND CERTIFIED?

The Housing Fund is certified by HUD to attach our second mortgages to FHA first mortgages in TN. THF also has been given the designation as a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) by the Department of the Treasury. THF is also certified as a Pre-Purchase Homebuyer Educator and Foreclosure Intervention Counsel agency.

WHO DO I SEND MATERIALS TO?

 For DPA, please send information packets to: [email protected]

For Shared Equity, please send information to: [email protected]

HOW DO I BECOME A LENDER?

If you are FHA approved in the state of Tennessee, or are one of our investing partners, you are eligible to use THF programs.

Development Lending

 

WHAT PROJECTS DO YOU SUPPORT THROUGH DEVELOPMENT LENDING?

 The Housing Fund supports Affordable Housing Development Projects, as well as Commercial/Community Facilities. For Affordable Housing Development Projects, the homes must be accessible to households with incomes at or below 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI). Commercial/Community Facilities must be located in low or moderate income (LMI) census tracts, or serving LMI client bases.

DOES THE PROPERTY HAVE TO BE IN A TARGETED CENSUS TRACT?

 If the property is not within low or moderate income (LMI) census tract, it must serve LMI client bases.

DO YOU LEND OUTSIDE NASHVILLE AND DAVIDSON COUNTY?

Yes. The Housing Fund will make development loans for projects located across the State of Tennessee.

WHAT ARE YOUR INTEREST RATES ON DEVELOPMENT LOANS?

 THF determines interest rates on a project-by-project basis.

DO YOU PROVIDE DEVELOPMENT LOANS FOR ACQUISITION ONLY?

The Housing Fund development loans can be used for acquisition costs, construction costs, infrastructure costs, soft costs, and closing costs.

DO YOU WORK WITH FOR-PROFITS?

The Housing Fund has worked with both for-profit and non-profit organizations for development projects.

Other Questions

 

DO YOU PROVIDE RENTAL ASSISTANCE?

 
No. We recommend contacting either MDHA or THDA for Section 8 assistance.

DO YOU PROVIDE HOMEBUYER EDUCATION?

Yes. The Housing Fund provides homebuyer education.  You can contact Freda Brownlow at 615-515-2203.  Additional classes are provided by certified counselors.  Please view the Schedule of Homebuyer Classes at www.thda.org.  For online Homebuyer Education, register and complete the course(s) at ehomeamerica.org/thehousingfund .

DO YOU ALLOW FOR RATIOS TO EXCEED 45%?

Based on our income and expense calculations, we do not allow ratios to exceed 45%. However, we encourage those whose ratios exceed these to apply if interested. Sometimes we look at income differently than the first mortgage lender and we may be able to help. Please view this packet for more information on DTI ratios.

IF I AM MOVING TO TENNESSEE, CAN I QUALIFY?

Yes, as long as the home you are purchasing is in the state of Tennessee, you might be eligible for one of our programs.

IF I CURRENTLY LIVE IN TENNESSEE AND AM BUYING A HOUSE IN ANOTHER STATE, CAN I QUALIFY?

No. Your home must be within the state of Tennessee in order to qualify for any of our programs.

DO I HAVE TO BE A US CITIZEN?

To be eligible for The Housing Fund funds, you must be either a US citizen or a permanent resident alien.

DO YOU SUBORDINATE?

 
Yes. To review a loan for subordination, provide The Housing Fund with permission to release information. Once this is received, we will send the new lender forms to fill out, with instructions for additional documents needed for review. Once the documentation has been received, it will be reviewed and a decision on the subordination will be made.

WHO DO I CONTACT FOR PAYMENT?

For DPA loans, contact Hannah Belcher at 615-515-2207

CAN I MAKE PAYMENTS IN CASH?

No. The Housing Fund does not accept cash payments.

Get In Touch

Contact Us:

Mailing address: PO Box 281345

Physical location:
50 Vantage Way, Suite 201
Nashville, TN 37228

(615) 780-7000