United Wholesale rolls out its 1% down program

Is 1% becoming a trend?

United Wholesale Mortgage just announced a new program enabling borrowers to purchase homes with a 1% down payment.

The company provides eligible homebuyers with a 2% lender-paid down payment that gives consumers a 3% equity at closing.

“The 1% down program we’re introducing is a new alternative to the 3% down programs that already exist,” UWM President and CEO Mat Ishbia said. “It’s a conventional loan that is designed for people with a strong credit payment history who want to keep as much money in their wallet as possible when buying a home.”

“By introducing this conventional 1% down program to the wholesale space, we’re equipping mortgage brokers with a distinct competitive advantage in the market and a new way to help borrowers realize homeownership,” Ishbia said.

Many new low down-payment programs are being pushed out due to home prices that continue to increase nationwide, even hitting new highs in several large housing markets in April, according to the S&P Dow Jones Indices Case-Shiller Home Prices Indices released in June.  

UWM isn’t the first company to offer 1% down mortgages. Recently, the City of Chicago and Chicago Infrastructure Trust helped bring more Chicago residents into homeownership through a 1% down payment loan. The homeowner assistance program currently has five banks in their lender program including Guaranteed Rate, American Financial NetworkHome Trust MortgagePacor Mortgage Corp and Wintrust Mortgage.

Also, unbeknownst to many in the market, Quicken Loans began offering a 1% down mortgage late last year.

Previously, UWM announced that it offered a 3% down payment mortgage, along with several others such as Bank of AmericaWells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase.

In fact, in a recent interview with HousingWire, Mat Ishbia, CEO of UWM, explained why these mortgages are growing in popularity, especially among Millennial buyers. When asked if 3% down mortgages were going to become the new normal, he answered, “Absolutely.”

But even 1% down is not the lowest that the market has gone recently, with some lenders even offering zero-down mortgages.

Fifth Third Mortgage recently announcing that it is offering mortgage loans that require no down payment from the borrower, assuming the borrower meets certain and specific requirements.

BancorpSouth is also now offering zero-down mortgages to certain borrowers, the bank said recently in an announcement.

UWM's 1% down program is available to homebuyers in all 50 states with a minimum FICO score of 700 and a maximum debt-to-income ratio of 43%. UWM is one of the first wholesale lenders in the U.S. offering a 1% down-payment option in the form of a conventional loan, as opposed to a government-backed mortgage.

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