An FHA mortgage loan is issued by an FHA approved lender and insured by the FHA. These loans were designed for low to moderate income borrowers. They enable borrowers to qualify with a lower down payment and lower credit scores than conventional loan


  • FICO scores from 500 TO 579 require a 10% down payment
  • FICO scores from 580 plus require a 3.5% down payment
  • Two years of verifiable employment or income history
  • Primary residence
  • Must pay upfront mortgage insurance at closing of 1.75% of loan
  • Must pay annual mortgage premiums of 0.45 to 1.05% of loan over 12 months
  • Must have property appraised by FHA approved appraiser
  • Home must meet HUD property guidelines
  • Monthly mortgage payment must not exceed 31% of yearly gross income
  • Monthly mortgage plus other monthly debt must not exceed 43% of your yearly gross income
  • All loans 15 to 30 years with fixed interest
  • Must use HUD or FHA Lender



HOP – Fulton County’s Homeownership Program!

It’s called the Fulton County Homeownership Program, or HOP! It provides down payment and closing cost assistance for qualified individuals in accordance with the loan applicant’s first mortgage lender requirements. The funding is available for low to moderate income families. Eligible families must reside in Alpharetta, Chattahoochee Hills, College Park, East Point, Fairburn, Hapeville, Milton, Mountain Park, Palmetto and Union City.  Also the Riverdale section of Fulton County.

Eligible families can get up to 6% of the home’s sale price and cannot exceed $10,000.00 for down payment and closing cost assistance.  If you purchase an existing home, the sale price can’t be more than $201,000 and a new home can’t have a sale price of more than $244,000

Other Key Facts

  • 20% of the loan amount is forgiven annually after Year one if they remain in compliance with HOP guidelines
  • Credit history and income must qualify the homebuyer with a first mortgage lender with appropriate debt to income ratios
  • Homebuyer must complete 8 hours of pre-purchase housing counseling with approved HUD agency
  • The purchaser must fall within the proper income guidelines to purchase a property with HUD assistance (Annual gross household income requirements must not exceed the limits established by HUD.

The following six (6) participating lenders have closed loans:

  • American Eagle Mortgage
  • Bank of Ozarks
  • Diamond Residential Mortgage
  • Homestar Financial
  • RS Mortgage
  • Southeast Mortgage

To learn more contact Christian@ Arthur.christian@fultoncountyga.gov or call 404-613-4176

Three steps to improve your credit scores!


  • Get copies of your full credit reports from all three credit bureaus: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax.
  • You can get your credit reports free once a year, at www.annualcreditreport.com or by 1-877-322-8228.


  • Look for all incorrect information on your credit report and dispute the items because mistakes can happen.
  • If you see any mistakes or questionable items, make a copy of the report and highlight the error.
  • Gather any information that you have to back up your claim and make copies of these as well.
  • Write a letter to the specific credit reporting agency that shows and explain the mistake and include a copy of the highlighted report along with your proof.
  • Send your letter by certified mail, and keep a copy for yourself.
  • The reporting agency has 30 days from the receipt of your letter to respond


  • Pay all of your bills on time
  • Pay down debt (especially credit card debt)
  • Avoid applying for credit

Contact me for more assistance and look for more articles in the near future!

What is Credit Utilization?

Your credit utilization rate, sometimes called your credit utilization ratio, is the amount of revolving credit you’re currently using divided by the total amount of revolving credit you have available. In other words, it’s how much you currently owe divided by your credit limit. It is generally expressed as a percent. For example, if you have a total of $10,000 in credit available on two credit cards, and a balance of $5,000 on one, your credit utilization rate is 50% — you’re using half of the total credit you have available. You can calculate an overall credit utilization rate as well as a rate for each of your credit accounts (called your per-card ratio).

Credit scoring models often consider your credit utilization rate when calculating a credit score for you. They can impact up to 30% of a credit score (which makes them among the more influential factors), depending on the scoring model being used.

A low credit utilization rate shows you’re using less of your available credit. Credit scoring models generally interpret this as an indication you’re doing a good job managing credit by not overspending, and keeping your spending in check can help you reach higher credit scores. Having higher credit scores can make it easier to secure additional credit when you need it.