Types of Mortgages Offered in Charleston, SC

Woman holding model of Charleston South Carolina Home with Cash Underneath

When our parents were buying their first home, there was only one way to finance the purchase. They went down to the corner bank and asked for a 30-year mortgage. That was it. It was common to stay in the same house for the entire 30 years and they celebrated the final payment. It’s just not the way financing works today. 

First of all, it’s unusual for someone to keep a mortgage for 30 years. The average homeowner moves every 5-7 years. Even paying off a mortgage might not be desirable as it’s one of the few tax breaks still available to the average person. Most financial advisors suggest using a mortgage as a financial planning tool. 

Things have definitely changed. Depending on your needs there are a number of mortgage options you might consider, each with advantages and disadvantages.

Conventional Loan

Mortgage broker with wooden model blocks and cash explaining conventional home loans

A conventional loan is still one of the most widely used types of mortgage. A conventional loan is normally still designed to be paid off in 30 years with equal monthly payments during the term of the loan. There are currently conventional loans that require as little as 5% down, although 20% is still commonplace. 

FHA Loan

Happy couple celebrating their first Charleston South Carolina home using a FHA mortgage Loan

An FHA loan is guaranteed by the Federal Housing Administration and is another commonly used loan. FHA financing is attractive for a number of reasons, especially for first-time homebuyers. The down payment can be as little as 3.5% and that can be a gift. FHA also typically does not have as stringent credit score requirements and other traditional loan requirements. The loan limit varies by state and county, so check with your lender about specific limits in your area.

VA Loan

soldier standing behind american flag - VA home Loans in Charleston, SC

VA (Veteran Affairs) is a loan program offered for Veterans and their spouses. This loan allows the borrower to borrow 100% of the home’s value in the loan. While there will be closing costs, there is no down payment required.

Specialized Options

Real Estate agent discussing specialized mortgage options with client

Your local Charleston, SC lender will also have more specialized options for you, such as adjustable-rate loans and 10 or 15-year loans. They can also explain the additional costs that could be associated with each type of loan program. For instance, all loans with less than a 20% down payment will have Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). 

Bottom Line

Part of purchasing a home is finding the right financing. Your lender will talk you through your options. If you have not already spoken to a lender, or if you need a referral, our real estate agents are a great resource for you. 

Contact Our Charleston Agents To Learn More About Financing Options

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