Buying a Home in Pennsylvania
Are you considering buying a home in Pennsylvania? The Keystone State may be the place you find your dream home. Here’s what you need to know about the state.
Pennsylvania has a population that has topped 12.7 million persons, and more than one in ten live in Philadelphia. One in twenty live in the state’s next largest cities (which don’t include Harrisburg, the state capital):
Next, it’s time to calculate how much home you can afford. Pennsylvania ranks 33rd in US homes for sale at average price, and 16th for homes over $1,000,000. If you want to plan your budget before you go look at houses, loan preapproval is key.
First-time homebuyers may qualify for a program administered by the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA), offering 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages with affordable interest rates and fewer fees.
The HOMEstead Downpayment and Closing Cost Assistance Loan can provide between $1,000 and $10,000 in down payment and closing cost assistance as a no-interest second mortgage loan that is forgiven over five years at 20% per year.
The Keystone Advantage Assistance Loan Program offers an interest-free second mortgage for up to 4% of the home price or $6,000, whichever is lower. This can be used toward the down payment or closing costs, and has an easy 10-year repayment schedule.
Some requirements apply to these programs:
- Minimum credit score of 660
- Proceeds must be used for the down payment or closing costs
- Minimum loan of $500
Refinancing in Pennsylvania
If it’s time to refinance a home in Pennsylvania so that you can take advantage of favorable Pennsylvania mortgage rates, here are some strategies to consider:
- Refinance to eliminate private mortgage insurance, or PMI
- Refinance in order to lock in a better interest rate
- Refinance so you can cash out equity from your home
- Refinance your loan so that it has a longer term
You may be qualified to apply for a streamlined refinance depending on your current loan type. Ask your lender for more information.