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We offer many different kinds of mortgage products to help you qualify for the best possible loan. Our experienced staff is ready to help you choose the right product for you. We are happy to have you call us or visit a local branch to meet with one of our qualified loan representatives to help you determine which loan type is best for your needs.

What is the Importance of Your Credit Score?

Before deciding the terms a lender will offer you on a loan (which they base on the "risk" to the Bank), the lender wants to know two things about you: your ability to pay back the loan and your willingness to pay back the loan. For the ability to repay, the lender looks at your debt-to-income ratio. For willingness to repay, the lender consults your credit score. The most widely used credit scores are FICO scores. Your FICO score is between 350 (higher risk) and 850 (lower risk).

Credit scores only consider the information contained in your credit profile. It does not consider your income, savings, down payment amount, or demographic factors like gender, race, nationality or marital status. Credit scoring was developed as a way to consider only what was relevant to a person's ability to repay a loan. Past delinquencies, derogatory payment behavior, current debt level, length of credit history, types of credit and number of inquiries are all factors considered to determine your credit score. Your score considers both positive and negative information in your credit report. Late payments will lower your score, but establishing or reestablishing your ability to make payments on time will raise your score.

Different portions of your credit history are given different weights. Thirty-five percent of your FICO score is based on your specific payment history. Thirty percent is based on your current level of indebtedness. Fifteen percent each is based on the time your open credit has been in use (ten year old accounts are good, six month old ones are not as good) and types of credit available to you (installment loans such as student loans, car loans, etc. versus revolving and debit accounts like credit cards). Finally, five percent is based on your pursuit of new credit — credit scores requested.

Your credit report must contain at least one account that has been open for six months or more, and at least one account that has been updated in the past six months. This ensures that there is enough information in your report to generate an accurate score. If you do not meet the minimum criteria for getting a credit score, you may need to establish a credit history prior to applying for a mortgage.

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