Find the Best Home Loan for You

August 03, 2023

Are you planning on buying a larger home or downsizing this year? Before you start your search, take the time to understand the mortgage landscape. Getting the right loan can be as important as the home itself. The last thing you want to do is pay unnecessary fees or take on loan terms that might hurt your finances.

As a not-for-profit financial cooperative, SchoolsFirst FCU wants to demystify the buying process, and provide affordable solutions to help you achieve the dream of homeownership. Because we return profits after expenses to Members in the form of lower interest rates and low or no fees whenever possible, we offer highly competitive mortgage solutions, along with expert guidance to help you make the most of your money.

As you start researching your options, here are some loans you may want to consider.

SchoolsFirst FCU HomeAccess™

Most people know that one of the biggest hurdles to buying a first home is saving up enough money for the down payment and having enough cash on hand for closing costs. Because many consumers buy homes without putting 20% down, lenders usually charge private mortgage insurance, or PMI, to protect them if borrowers default on their loans. Our SchoolsFirst FCU HomeAccess™ loan features competitive interest rates, a low down payment — as low as 3% — as well as closing costs and minimal PMI coverage that is lower than FHA loans, making it a smart solution for those want to get into their first home but don't have a lot of savings on hand.

School Employee Mortgage Program

If you're a school employee, we offer a mortgage loan featuring competitive rates and a 30-year fixed term. This means you'll enjoy lower monthly payments than a shorter-term loan offers, and because the interest rate is fixed, your payments stay consistent. This mortgage also offers discounted loan processing fees and no PMI, which can help you save money over the long term and reduce your monthly payments. The School Employee Mortgage program features a 5% down payment option.

Adjustable Rate Mortgages

An adjustable rate mortgage, or ARM, offers a starting interest rate that's lower than a fixed-rate mortgage at the beginning of the loan period. At the end of that timeframe — such as five or seven years — the interest rate will adjust up or down, depending on market conditions. If interest rates drop, your mortgage payment will be less each month, but if they rise, your payments will go up too. Our ARMs feature down payments as low as 5%, and a no PMI option. Frequently, people take advantage of the low rates ARMs offer and refinance before the fixed-loan period ends. If you're considering an ARM, a loan consultant can help you understand exactly how they work, when your payment will adjust, how often it changes, and how high the interest rate could go.

Benefits of SchoolsFirst FCU Home360℠

Members enrolled in Home360 receive a 20% rebate from the commission of the participating agent who represents them in their home purchase and other benefits when both a home sale and purchase are completed.1

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1. Rebate payment is made by First Team Real Estate or HomeSmart Evergreen Realty. Rebate is credited to your benefit at the close of transaction, and will be lowered by any reductions to the commissions paid to the participating agent in a concurrent purchase and sale of a home. Commission will vary. To be eligible for the 20% rebate, Member must complete the transaction with the agent assigned by SchoolsFirst FCU Home360℠. Using SchoolsFirst FCU for a mortgage loan is not a requirement to earn the rebate. Purchase price must be greater than $150,000 after all credit adjustments. All rebates are subject to limitations, lender guidelines, and other requirements. Certain properties may not be eligible for rebates. Rebate is 20% for purchase only of a residential property in California. Please consult a qualified tax professional for advice on tax implications from receiving a rebate. First Team Real Estate and HomeSmart Evergreen Realty are not affiliated with SchoolsFirst FCU. Discounted 1.5% listing fee is for a residential property sale in California when the home is sold and closes escrow. Does not include commission owed to buyer’s agent (up to 3%). Sales price must be greater than $150,000.