Build Home Equity

Thinking about a mortgage? You've got options.

When buying your first home, a 30-year mortgage with 20% down isn't the only loan game in town anymore. 

Explore the mortgage landscape and see what may work for you. There are products designed to offer flexibility and options to help make buying a home feasible for more people. From conventional mortgages and beyond, we break down common mortgage types and who they may work for. 

At Fremont Bank, we recognize that buying your first home can sometimes feel daunting. Fortunately, we've helped thousands of borrowers with their home-buying journeys and are here to assist you. 

Our hands-on approach, exceptional service, and expansive product offering can put you at ease and make your dream become a reality. 

We offer many loan programs, including:

Conventional Mortgages

Conventional mortgages usually originate from a bank, credit union, or mortgage company that underwrites the loan. While traditional mortgages can be sold to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, two government-sponsored entities, Fremont Bank services most of our mortgages in-house.

Details about conventional mortgages include:

  • Minimum credit score of 620, though some loans are available to individuals with lower credit scores. 
  • Affordable low-down-payment options are available with as little as 5% down. 
    • For example, using a $500,000 purchase price, a 5% down payment equals just a $25,000 down payment requirement.
  • Paid back over a term, most commonly 30 years, though terms of 10, 15, and 20 years are also available.
  • Available with a range of terms that may work for a borrower but can require stricter documentation than other loans.
    • A fixed-rate mortgage carries a consistent interest rate for the loan term, usually 15, 20, or 30 years.
    • Adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) have variable interest rates that increase or decrease at set intervals after an initial period with a fixed rate. Some home buyers like ARMs because the initial interest rate is often lower.
  • Many counties within California are defined as high-cost areas where loan amounts can be as high as $1,149,825. Let's discuss your county purchase limit today.

Conventional Mortgages at Fremont Bank

Our conventional mortgages are designed to meet the needs of our borrowers.

Fees can be covered with our No Closing Cost option. Fremont Bank covers non-recurring closing costs such as appraisal, credit report, escrow, lender’s title insurance, loan documentation, and loan origination. Find out more about this unique program.

We also offer competitive points options if you're looking to buy down the rate. This may be beneficial if you are getting a seller credit or have additional funds. 

Some buyers choose to obtain a first mortgage and a home equity line of credit (HELOC)

second mortgage to help cover a portion of the down payment. Reach out to discuss the combo loans available from Fremont Bank.

For some buyers, there are better options than a conventional mortgage due to loan size, credit, income, or collateral restrictions. Other mortgage products may meet these needs.

Portfolio and Jumbo Mortgages

Homebuyers looking for a higher loan amount – greater than limits set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA)– may want to explore a portfolio or jumbo loan, also known as a nonconforming or nonagency loan.

These products are also used by buyers who have:

  • Unique income streams
  • Complex business ownership
  • Use of retirement funds to qualify
  • Alternative credit histories

Portfolio and Jumbo Mortgages at Fremont Bank

Buyers who need a larger loan size with unique credit or financing needs can also take advantage of low rates and exceptional service from Fremont Bank. We offer competitive rate options for portfolio and jumbo mortgages on loan amounts up to $2,500,000 on primary and second homes.

Reach out to discuss:

  • Flexible underwriting, often less restrictive than conventional loan underwriting guidelines
  • Interest-only options available for buyers who want to keep their payment lower
  • No closing cost and points options available
  • Combo loans available. Some buyers choose to obtain a first mortgage and a home equity line of credit (HELOC) second mortgage to help cover a portion of the down payment.

If a conventional or portfolio mortgage isn't feasible, you might want to check out our FHA loan program.

FHA Mortgages 

FHA loans are designed for borrowers with lower down payment availability and a lower credit score. First-time homebuyers and the self-employed may choose an FHA loan because of these less stringent requirements.

FHA mortgages are issued by private lenders but insured by the federal government through the Federal Housing Administration. 

FHA Loans at a Glance:        

  • Can be used to buy, build, renovate, refinance, and even relocate a primary residence
  • Credit and finances dictate how much you qualify for based on limits in your area
  • Flexible underwriting
  • Fixed-rate options are available
  • Downpayment is linked to your credit score; the higher the score, the lower the downpayment you need
  • Mortgage insurance is required

The flexibility that comes with an FHA mortgage means higher upfront and annual costs in the form of mortgage insurance premiums.

Joint or Cosigned Mortgages

If you don't think you'll qualify for a mortgage alone, a joint mortgage or enlisting a cosigner could create more options. 

With a joint mortgage, the person or people buying with you don't have to live in that property with you. Everyone is equally responsible for making payments, but each person's contribution can be protected via legal agreement.

A cosigned mortgage is one in which the other signer can help you qualify for a mortgage and agree to pay if you can't. They don't have an ownership claim on the property. In a joint mortgage, the co-borrowers share ownership. 

Taking out a joint mortgage can help you get approved for a mortgage or increase the amount you can borrow. If all signers contribute to a down payment, you may be able to obtain a lower interest rate. 

You can take out a joint mortgage usually with two to four or more people total, who can include:

  • Partner (in a marriage, civil partnership, or not)
  • Friend
  • Family member
  • Business partner
  • Someone else you trust

The maximum number of borrowers depends on the lender. 

This unique type of mortgage requires additional underwriting and time. Some lenders avoid the challenge of mortgages with multiple co-buyers. Not Fremont Bank! There are various types of joint mortgage products available. Reach out to discuss if this is an option you'd like to learn more about.

Fremont Bank is proud to offer a diverse range of mortgage choices and our straightforward Mortgages Without the MysterySM loan process. Explore products with attractive rates, low-down-payment options, complimentary pre-approval letters, and tailored service. See our other mortgage types or contact a Fremont Bank Mortgage Expert today.