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row of red and blue housesFannie Mae’s new HomePath Ready Buyer program offers first-time home buyers the opportunity to put as little as 3% down and get up to 3% of the purchase price back in the form of closing cost assistance on Fannie Mae-owned HomePath properties.

The Quicken Loans Conventional Product Manager Justin Herring said this new program is a real win for first-time home buyers.

“While Fannie Mae hasn’t announced an end date for this program, I would encourage clients to take advantage of this great offer now,” Herring said. “Rates are near historic lows.”

Sounds good right? We think so, too. There are a couple of things you need to know so you can qualify.

Eligibility Details

The assistance Fannie Mae provides can go toward closing costs, points, prepayment of expenses and reimbursement of your buyer education course fee. There are a few eligibility requirements:

  • You must be a first-time home buyer.
  • The home must be your primary residence within 60 days of closing.
  • Tenants in tenant-occupied properties are eligible to buy homes through the program.
  • The home must be a Fannie Mae-owned HomePath property.

HomePath Properties

In order to qualify for this deal, the property must be owned by Fannie Mae. Luckily, you can find listings for these properties on the HomePath site. You can input the location you’re looking for, and your desired number of bedrooms and bathrooms. You’re also able to specify a minimum and maximum price.

Buyer Education

Prior to making your initial offer, you have to complete a buyer education course designed to prepare you to get your mortgage loan. The nine-module course covers topics like these:

  • Avoiding common problems
  • Determining how much you can afford
  • How to decide which home is right for you

The cost of the course is $75. If you do end up purchasing a HomePath home, this fee is reimbursed when the loan is closed. Fannie Mae says most people complete the course in 4 – 6 hours. If you have a co-borrower, only one of you must complete the course.

The Offer Process

After you complete the course, you’re ready to make an initial offer. There are a few differences between making an offer on a HomePath home and a regular offer.

You cannot purchase a HomePath property without going through a real estate agent. If you don’t have an agent already, Fannie Mae provides contact info for agents on the property page, or you could check out Rocket Homes to find one in your area.

In order to be eligible for the program, your agent should also request closing cost assistance from Fannie Mae at the time the initial offer is made. Your agent will make the offer online and attach your HomePath Ready Buyer course completion certificate.

Are you interested in buying a home through this new program? If you have any questions, let us know in the comments!

This Post Has 97 Comments

  1. I’m a little unclear regarding Homepath and their closing cost assistance. From my understand, I’m currently receiving 6% concession rolled into my loan to offset my out-of-pocket closing costs. However, in the long run it’s still being paid by me.

    Prior to making an offer on the home, Homepath looped me into paying $75 to take a course that they assured would be reimbursed in the closing assistance. But if I’m essentially paying for the closing, how am I being reimbursed? Is there something I’m missing here?

    1. Hi Melissa:

      I see you’ve recently reached out to us. I’m going to have one of our Home Loan Experts reach out to you to clarify how this program works.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  2. My agent accidentally submitted my offer and forgot to let me finish my course. Can he add my certificate and correct my offer? Also, can this be combined with a bond first-time homebuyer assistance program I qualified for too?
    Thanks!

    1. Hi Cassie:

      That’s a good question. I’m going to recommend you reach out to one of our Home Loan Experts by calling (888) 980-6716. They would be able to look into it and give you more information.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  3. I owned a house within the last 3 years but my wife was not listed on the mortgage. I sold the house in 2016.
    My wife and I are buying a new house this year. Would my wife qualify for the 3% closing cost assistance through Homepath since she was not listed on the mortgage from the previous house? (Both of our names will be on this mortgage) Thanks.

    1. Hi Terry:

      I’m going to recommend you talk to one of our Home Loan Experts. If she was on the title, that may count as owning property. You can get in touch with us by calling (888) 980-6716. I hope this helps!

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  4. Hello,

    What if I currently own an owner-occupant multi-unit by myself through FHA. Since the purchase in 2014, my family size has drastically extended and expecting soon. The multi-unit space is too small for my extended family size, can I use the Fannie Mae product, HomeReady to purchase a primary residence?

    1. Most first-time home buyer products require that you don’t own any property in the last three years. That being said, we may have other good options available for you. I do recommend you talk to one of our Home Loan Experts by filling out this form or calling 888-728-4702. We are off today in observance of Christmas, but someone will be happy to talk in the morning. Happy holidays!

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  5. Hello, if we complete the home path education course and decide to wait on a better home. How long is the certificate valid ? In other words, is there an expiration date? Does it matter if you entered a specific mortgage company on the certificate (which is required, the decide to use another company? Will the same certificate be valid for this purpose?

    Thanks
    Colleen

    1. Hey Colleen:

      Fannie Mae places no specific time limit on the expiration of the certificate. That said, lenders may have different policies. The same certificate will transfer between lenders. Hope this helps!

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  6. Why am I being charged a Fannie Mae fee around $6300 in addition to my closing costs including quicken loan fees? Is this only happening to me? My closing cost is>$16,000. Why is that? I have a conventional loan and putting down 20%.

    1. Every situation is different, but this is definitely something we can look into and help answer your questions. Thanks for reaching out!

  7. what is the credit score requirement to purchase a home path property and be eligible for up to 3% closing cost assistance after passing course?

    1. Hi Eric:

      The standard minimum on conventional loans through us is 620. This program has no additional information showing different credit requirements. If you’d like to speak to one of our Home Loan Experts who can give you more info and go over your situation properly, you can fill out this form or call (888) 728-4702.

  8. Your required to pass 80% of the course you you don’t you will not get your money back and you do not get the certificate. Even if you failed at 79%. I had a 77% so that means I no good to hae help from Fannie Mae.

    1. Thanks for the info! This is good for people to know. I would try to take the course again if I were you. Odds are your closing costs are a lot more than the $75 you lost and you can get reimbursed for the cost of the second course if you pass.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  9. I am seeking consult and guidance with one of your ” Home Loan experts” at Quickenloans on the US HUD Federal incentive program branded as HomePath. As the herewithin discussion threads have indicated, if a FANNIE MAE home is chosen to be financed, the purchaser meets elegibility criteria. Considering First time homebuyers who have invested the $75 to certify and successfully educate them self ( thereby reducing the ratio of lender risk – )
    *at the initial purchase agreement offer the request of up to 3% closing cost assistance and the $75 training cost has been made available to the purchaser through participating and cooperating lenders.
    Thank you Quickenloans

    Sincerely,
    James

    1. Hi James:

      We can absolutely help you get in contact with a mortgage banker. You can do so by filling out this form or calling 888-728-4702. I can tell you that everything you’re saying about the program is correct. If you buy a HomePath home at the end, you’re reimbursed the cost of the training course and you can get assistance with up to 3% of the closing cost.

  10. Are the closing cost and DPA program available for the Fannie Mae (HECM) properties also? This is a reverse mortgage foreclosure.

    1. Hi Dana:

      The Fannie Mae website doesn’t say anything about certain types of foreclosures being exempted from the program. It does say that the house has to be eligible, but I think this is something you find out for sure during the offer process. It doesn’t appear to matter what type of mortgage was on the home. I hope this helps!

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  11. I need help finding out how to take the Fannie Mae cost so that I can apply for the closing cost Assistance. Also do I have to pay for a list of Fannie Mae properties? Thank you.

  12. Have a pre approval with Quicken for an FHA loan. Asked my lender associate Bobbie Mae about this home ready program and she said she couldn’t help? Clearly Quicken can…how do I fix this, given I am working with Quicken now?

    1. Hi Chris:

      Loan programs often have certain requirements that don’t work for everyone in every situation. That said, I’m going to pass this on and we can have someone look at all your options and explain where you’re at. Thanks for reaching out!

      Kevin Graham

  13. I am approved for 185k fha..I did the American dream program for Assistance.. I just found a house I am interested in that’s Fannie Mae..
    Can I use my American dream program Assistance to help buy this house or do I need to do the Fannie Mae program..
    The house needs work before I can get my co.thanx mike

    1. Hi Mike:

      We generally don’t do any loans with down payment assistance programs, but I’m going to have someone reach out. We may be able to help you run the numbers and determine whether it’s better for you to remain on your current path or go with this Fannie Mae option.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  14. Hello, Ive been approved through quicken and have started the closing process. Would it be possible to use a down payment assistance program at this point? Are there any that quicken can recommend?

    1. Hi John:

      I can definitely have someone reach out to go over any options you may have to keep costs down at this point. They’ll be in contact.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

    1. Hi Michelle:

      The minimum credit score for a Fannie Mae conventional loan is 620. Hope this helps!

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  15. Hi,
    If I find a Fannie mae property that needs some renovation work, how would I go about getting a loan to complete the work? Is there any loan that would allow me to buy the house and fix it up all in one loan?

    1. Hi Melanie:

      This isn’t something that we specifically offer, but I know the FHA has something called a 203K loan that does just what you’re looking for. The only thing that worries me is whether or not you can get the closing cost assistance, but that’s something you can definitely ask Fannie Mae. Hope this helps!

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  16. I want to know if you are on a fixed income can you still apply and can you use the people’s income that stays in your home and do you have to have money in the bank and what is the credit score that you have to have I talk to different quick loans people and they act like they don’t know anything about the program can some one help me if there is a program and who do I need to talk with cause I need a house thanks

    1. Hi Regina:

      I’m sorry to hear about your experience with us. We offer various loan options, but the requirements tend to be specific to each one. I’m going to forward this to someone and we can help you look into your options and see if there’s anything we can do. They’ll be reaching out.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  17. Can you get Fannie Mae financing and the “Ready Buyer’ closing costs paid on a home that requires major renovation? This house has working heat, electric, plumbing, but is in overall poor condition.

    1. Hi Magbis:

      I’m going to have someone reach out to you. You may have a couple of options to keep closing costs down including lender credits or rolling the costs into the balance by paying more for the house and having the seller pay for the closing costs as concessions in return.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  18. Hi,

    I have put a bid in already and found this on the website after my bid has been accepted. Is there a way I can use this?

    1. Hi Angela:

      According to Fannie Mae, you have to apply for the closing cost assistance at the time of the initial offer, but I’m going to forward this to one of our Home Loan Experts to see if there’s anything we can do to help you here. Someone will be in contact with you.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

      1. Wondering how this turned out… We submitted an offer yesterday on a property we adore, and our realtor recommended that we ask for $5,000 paid by seller for closing costs. Technically it’s less than 3% of the homes value, but I am just now reading that we can take this course and virtually attempt the same thing, just labeled “closing assistance”. Am I understanding this right? Do we have a chance even though we did not complete the course and just entered “Amount for closing costs”

        Worse comes to worse I assume if the offer gets denied we can then in turn take the class and re-submit an offer with the class certificate attached, correct?

        1. Hi Annie:

          I’m not sure how this would work in your case, but I’m going to pass this along to one of our Home Loan Experts who may be able to give you more information and answer your question.

          Thanks,
          Kevin Graham

  19. For the Home Path Buyer Ready program- should the 3% closing cost assistance reduce your offer by that same 3%?
    I completed the on-line $75 Home Path Buyer Ready program hoping to take advantage of the 3% closing cost assistance. But, when I submitted my offer, the paper work showed that my offer was actually reduced by the 3%, making my net offer 3% less! This does not seem right to me. Has anyone else taken advantage of this program?

    1. Hi Tim:

      I’m not sure how this 3% incentive is factored in during the offer process, but I’m going to get this to one of our Home Loan Experts to help figure this out. They’ll be in contact. Thanks for reaching out!

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

      1. I am also interested to know if asking for closing costs through the Ready Buyer program, reduces the offer amount. We are in a multiple offer situation and need to know how the Seller paid closing costs affect the value of our offer.

        1. Hi Jill:

          As to your first question, as long as the house is listed on the HomePath site as a property owned by Fannie Mae, you can get the closing cost assistance through this program. The second question I’m not totally sure about, but I’m going to forward it to one of our Home Loan Experts.

          Thanks,
          Kevin Graham

  20. I have new credit history (18 months), my credit score is about 660 my husband’s 630 and family income around 8k before taxes. I am first time buyer (he’s not). its possible get homepath financing under my name? and we saw a house for 280k we really like…..

    1. Hi Raphy:

      We can definitely help you look into your options and see if this is something that would work for you. Someone will be reaching out!

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  21. I have completed the course, found my home and am ready to make an offer but am having trouble figuring out how to get the closing assistance and finding a lender to work with. I have a small down payment of my own as well. Help please.

    1. Hi Sarah:

      We do offer this program. I’m going to have someone reach out and see what we can do for you! They’ll be in contact.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  22. I found a home that I like and want to put an offer on that is a HomePath property. I already pre-qualified for an FHA loan, but I can’t use in on this specific property because it is a condo in an association that the FHA approval lapsed in 2011. (as most have in my city) How do I go about getting approved for the HomeReady loan? I’ve tried to find specific information, but I can’t find any. I’m not sure how to find a lender. I already took the HomeReady course and passed last week. Also, my state has a first time home buyer grant program that gives down payment assistance, is that okay to use with the HomeReady mortgage?

    1. Hi Sarah:

      Great news! We do these loans and I can put you in touch with someone that can answer each of your questions. Thanks for reaching out!

      Kevin Graham

  23. Hi there, my husband and I are expecting our first child and we desperately need to buy a house. My husband is a teacher and I’m still in college so money is a bit tight, we need the 3% down payment assistance. Is this program something for us or should we just wait to save up $6000 for a down payment ? And if this program is for us is there a mortgage broker that will help. My husband credit score is 815 ( will that affect us for getting help). I found this really nice home on homeopath.com
    Thanks in advance for your reply. Anything helps

    1. Hi Sarah:

      You definitely don’t need a crazy amount for a down payment. There are this and several other low down payment options that we can help you take a look at. I’m going to have someone reach out.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  24. I found a home path house that we are very interested in. I would like info on how to move forward , I am a first time home buyer and this whole process confuses me. My credit score is 680 with a monthly income of 6000. How do I proceed?

    1. Hey Joe:

      You’ve come to the right place. I’m going to have a Home Loan Expert reach out to you so we can help answer whatever questions you might have. Thanks for reaching out! Have a great day!

      Kevin Graham

    1. Hi Patty:

      Many states and local governments offer programs that help with the down payment. Since you’re approved for an FHA loan, I would Google HUD and your state and that should help you find local programs. I’m also going to have One of our home loan experts reach out and see if we can help you with your loan.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

    1. Hi Theresa:

      You can get a HomePath Ready Buyer loan with a 620 credit score. I’m going to have someone reach out to help you get started.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

    1. Hi Kat:

      I don’t know the answer to that question, but I’m going to get this to one of our Home Loan Experts who may be able to tell you more.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  25. To Qualify for the Home Ready program. How long after I sell my current home can I be eligible for the HomeReady 3% down conventional financing loan?

    Thank you

    1. Hi Smith:

      Unfortunately, you have to be a first-time home buyer to qualify for the 3% closing cost assistance, but there are other 3% down options. I’m going to have someone reach out about your options.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  26. I am interested in taking the homepath course. Im not sure that I would qualify for a home loan within 6 months. Should I wait to take the course?

    1. Hi Stephanie:

      I would definitely wait to take the course until it’s closer to the time you’ll actually be looking to buy. I’m going to put you in touch with a Home Loan Expert who may be able to assess your readiness. That way, you’ll have someone to reach out to when it’s time.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  27. Hello:
    Does the property have to be Homepath property or any bank owned, HUD owned property would work for this program?
    Thanks!

    1. Hi Lora:

      Unfortunately, to qualify for this program with closing cost assistance, the property has to be owned by Fannie Mae and not any other bank or HUD. I hope this helps clarify things.

      Kevin Graham

  28. I had a short sale in May 2012. I have been pre-approved for a FHA loan because I only have 5000 to buy a house. Our total monthly gross income is 6400 that will increase in to 8100 in July. it possible to buy a home? We pay 2100 monthly in loans and credit cards. My credit score is 659 and my spouse is 630. Can we buy a homepath property?

    1. Hi Catherine:

      We can definitely help you look into your options. I can tell you that you can only qualify for the closing assistance program on HomePath properties if you get your financing through Fannie Mae as a first-time home buyer, but you wouldn’t currently be able to do that because of the time elapsed since the short sale. An FHA loan might work. I’m going to have a Home Loan Expert reach out to you with more information.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  29. If we are not using Fannie Mae for financing do we still have to complete the Homepath certification to submit an offer? or can we submit and offer without doing the course.

    Thanks

    1. Hi Sadie:

      You can submit an offer on a HomePath property without financing through Fannie Mae, but you have to get the loan through Fannie Mae in order to get the closing cost assistance.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  30. I have completed the course, have the ready buyer certificate; the home I want to purchase is in multiple offer situation. Will asking for the 3% closing cost assistance put me in a less desirable position? Are there funds set aside already for this? Can I finance through FHA and still use the Home path closing cost assistance?
    thank you

    1. Hi Mike:

      I’m going to take your second question first: In order to get the closing cost assistance, you have to finance through Fannie Mae. In terms of whether the funds are already set aside, this closing cost assistance is just a seller concession where Fannie Mae is the seller. The funds can’t be set aside ahead of time because it depends on the closing costs associated with the individual loan. In terms of whether it puts you in a less desirable position by accepting the assistance, I would assume they would just take the highest offer but it gets a little complex because they can reject an offer at their discretion, obviously. The other thing to remember in terms of the offer process is that Fannie Mae requires that you prequalify. I’m going to have someone reach out to go over this with you today.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

      1. “In order to get the closing cost assistance, you have to finance through Fannie Mae.”

        This is not true from my buying experience.

        THESE ARE THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS STRAIGHT FROM THE WEBSITE:

        To be eligible for this offer:

        Buyers must complete the full online training course on Homepath.com and receive the official Certificate of Completion.
        Buyer must have completed the HomePath Ready Buyer Training online course and received a completion certificate prior to the initial offer submission to be eligible for the closing cost assistance.
        The Certificate of Completion must be attached to the initial offer documents uploaded to HomePath Online Offers.
        The request for closing cost assistance must be made at the initial offer in the HomePath Online Offers system. The training cost reimbursement may be included in the closing cost assistance.
        The Initial offer must be entered into HomePath Online Offers system on or after April 14, 2015. Properties currently in negotiation or under contract prior to April 14th are not eligible. Offers entered prior to April 14th are not eligible.
        The closing cost assistance offer may be adjusted during contract negotiations. Buyers with total closing costs under 3% will not receive the difference as a credit.
        Buyer must be a First-Time Homebuyer (did not own a property in the past three years).
        Buyers must reside in the property as their primary residence within 60 days of closing.
        Individual buyers using public funds are eligible. Tenants residing in tenant-occupied properties are eligible.
        The property must be listed on Homepath.com and be eligible for the program.

        Please tell me where it says that you have to get your financing through a Fannie Mae loan?

        1. Hi Emily:

          I’m going to send this to one of our Home Loan Experts to confirm, but to get a loan through us for this program, you have to get your financing through Fannie Mae. This may not be the case for other lenders. I apologize if I caused any confusion and someone will be reaching out.

          Thanks,
          Kevin Graham

  31. Housing crisis 2.0. Why offer 3% down and 3% credit back to buyers? These buyers should save more money and buy a home when they have 20% down and reserves in the bank. That makes stronger market; not loan programs that give people homes that can’t afford them. These people will have maintenance and taxes too; how can they afford it when they can’t save more than 3% for a downpayment. Please America. Wake up. This will weaken our market in the USA and you will see another collapse.

    1. Hi John:

      This isn’t going to result in “Housing Crisis 2.0.” Yes, low down payment programs make homes a more realistic goal for people sooner, but lenders still make sure that clients can afford the payments. Lending guidelines are a lot different than they were in 2008. There are no more no doc loans and interest only mortgages. That just doesn’t happen.

      There’s a difference between being able to afford the payment and being able to save 20%. It can take a very long time to save 20%, but that doesn’t mean these people can’t afford a house payment. They are strictly qualified based on their debt-to-income ratio and credit.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  32. Hi,
    Am I only eligible for this program if I use a Fannie Mae homepath mortgage or would I be eligible with a conventional loan through my non Fannie Mae affiliated mortgage broker, as long as I am a first time home buyer purchasing a homepath property?
    Thanks!
    Chrissy

    1. Hi Chrissy:

      In order to qualify for the HomePath mortgage incentive, you have to get the loan through Fannie Mae. We can absolutely help you out with that if you have your eye on a particular property. I’m going to have one of our Home Loan Experts reach out to you.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  33. I was trying to purchase a Fannie Mae home back in May of 2015 I took the course and paid the fee but the home didn’t go through. Does the certificate expire after a period of time?

    1. Hi Sarah:

      Unfortunately, your certificate has expired. You have to put in your application within six months of taking the course as dictated by Fannie Mae. I wish I could give you better news, but hopefully this clears things up.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  34. My former home was included in a bankruptcy 5 years ago, but the title didn’t come out of my name until 2 years ago. Would I qualify as a first time buyer even though the mortgage lender took so long to get the title out of my name?

    1. Hi Cheryl:

      I’m going to pass your question along to one of our Home Loan Experts who will reach out in the next day or so.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

    1. Hi Ladora:

      It looks like Fannie Mae policies may let you use that course for your education if you file an application for a home within six months. That said, I’m going to pass your comment along to one of our Home Loan Experts who can look into your situation and give a more definitive answer. Thanks!

      Kevin Graham

  35. Are there any exceptions to qualifying as a first time homebuyer if you have in fact been co-owner of a home within the last three years?

    1. Hello, Tracy. If you have been a co-borrower in the last three years you cannot be considered a first-time borrower. You would need to be off the title of that home for three years before you could be considered a first-time homebuyer again. Also, the first-time homeowner perk really only matters if you’re trying to put 3% down on a regular conventional loan. Thanks for your question, Tracy!

    1. Hey, Corey! Buying a home is an exciting time, and we’d love to help. The best way is to speak with a Home Loan Expert about your home-financing options. I’ll have one of them shoot you an email. Please let us know if you have any questions.

    1. Hi Dee-

      The preapproval process is no different, although some of the specific approval requirements may be different. In some cases, you can get an FHA loan to finance a HomePath property. If you wanted to take advantage of this 3% down offer with closing cost assistance, you would have to finance through Fannie Mae. Fannie Mae does conventional loans which require a credit score of at least 620 as opposed to FHA loans which go as low as 580. I’m going to have one of our Home Loan Experts reach out to you about your preapproval options.

      Thanks,
      Kevin Graham

  36. For how long is the HomePath ready buyer certificate for? If I completed and have the certificate but I have not found a house yet will the certificate expire after a certain time frame?

  37. So, do I take the course and then just find an agent, or do I find an agent with Homepath and then take the course? I am very interested, however, I truly am a first time homebuyer so I would be much more comfortable talking to someone familiar with the program first.

    1. Good morning, Tamera. A good first step is to speak with a home loan expert. I’m going to have one send you an email. They’ll ask a few questions about your situation and point you in the right direction. Best of luck on your journey to home ownership!

  38. If I have owned a home that I purchased and lived for the last 7 years, and my wife and I wanted to purchase a new home, could we qualify as a first time home buyer? I bought the home before I was married, and this would be our first home together.

    1. Hey David-

      I’m going to pass on your comment to one of our Home Loan Experts who will be able to help you with your question. Thanks for reaching out!

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