Fannie and Freddie are demanding higher credit scores and charging higher rates for those who don’t have them. Until recently, a borrower with a 620 score might pay the same as one with a 680 score, said Victoria Bingham, chief executive with Pacific Rim Mortgage in Tigard, Ore.
But now that person might have to pay a half percentage point more. With today’s rates, that translates into 6.75% for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage instead of 6.25%, or $74 more a month on a $225,000 loan, typical for her client base.
Borrowers must also put more money down, especially if they don’t have stellar credit. For instance, those with down payments of less than 5% need a credit score of at least 680, said Steven Plaisance, executive vice president of Arvest Mortgage Co. in Tulsa, Ok. Previously, he could make loans to people without big down payments if they had other strong points, such as stable employment.
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