You have discovered the best resource for learning what is available to you in our State of Missouri for First Time Home Buyers. Down payment assistance, first time home buyer programs, low subsidized interest rates, zero down payment mortgage programs, low to no down payment programs, how to purchase a home with ZERO money out of your pocket, get approved for a mortgage AND be a cash buyer, how to get your home offers to the top of the offers stack, get sellers to pay for your closing costs, lock in a rate now and then go home shopping, and more!

Take the 5 Minute Pre-Qualification Quiz at the End 

I will provide you with a very detailed pre-qualification answering what programs are available to you, how to improve your mortgage and house hunting, money saving information, and answer you questions.

My name is Bob Rutledge, I have been  a Mortgage Loan Officer for over 25 years, I live and work in Missouri and I have dedicated this website and my business to helping First Time Home Buyers and other home buyers to purchase a new home with less money out of their pockets, improve your mortgage and house hunting position, and answer your questions. My hopes are that you will be educated to what is available to you, that you will ask questions, and that I can earn the opportunity to go to work for you as your mortgage loan officer. There is a lot of information here for you and it will save you a lot of money! It isn't bragging if it's true, but I am the best first time home buyer mortgage loan officer in Missouri!


Low Down Payment Mortgage Options

There are many mortgage programs that work very well with first time home buyers and when combined with down payment assistance they can provide many with exactly what is needed to get a new home buyer into a new home with less money and a great interest rate. Here is a list of all the LOW Down Payment Mortgage Programs that work extremely well with First Time Home Buyers. You are not required to have a large down payment, these are all low minimum down payment programs. 

FHA: the Grandfather of Mortgage Programs, the FHA mortgage only requires a down payment of 3.5% of the sales price and works very well with down payment assistance programs. If you can provide your own down payment it is very possible to be approved for a FHA mortgage with a middle credit score as low as 580 or higher. The FHA mortgage is more tolerant of higher debt to income borrowers and has easier underwriting guidelines than any of the other mortgage programs designed for first time home buyers.  FHA will allow for a 6% seller concession to help home buyers with their closing costs.   

Home Possible and Home Ready, the two sides of Conventional mortgages, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, that is in competition with the FHA low down payment mortgage program! Both of these programs allow for a 3% down payment and reduced mortgage insurance.  The interest rates on these program are very attractive and at times are lower than a conventional mortgage with larger down payments. The program is designed for low to moderate income home buyers with income limits capped at 80% of the median income for the area your home will be located, credit score requirements are set at 620 or higher, and the debt to income ratio is recommended to be at 45% of you gross monthly income. A Conventional mortgage approval is preferred with home sellers and these two programs are very flexible in their underwriting guidelines to provide you with a Conventional mortgage approval.

Fannie Mae offers a 3% down payment mortgage as well, there are no income restrictions, if for some reason you cannot qualify for the Home Ready or Home Possible mortgage programs this is a possible option for low down payment. 

USDA, this program is sometimes known as a Rural Development Mortgage, and is for low to moderate income households to purchase a home in rural areas outside of the more populated metro areas of Missouri. The USDA mortgage program provides 100% mortgages, no down payment, to qualified home buyers.  The USDA Mortgage Program does not require monthly mortgage insurance. I use this program a lot with home buyers who want to purchase a new home with little to zero money out of their pockets. With a no down payment requirement and multiple ways to help the home buyer with closing costs this program is my #2 favorite mortgage program. The USDA mortgage program generally requires a 640 or higher credit score but at times can be manually underwritten to a 620 or higher credit score. If you are looking to purchase a home outside the city limits and want to purchase a home with little to no money out of your funds, this is a great mortgage program. I can help you determine if a home is within the geographical confines of the program, just ask.

VA, a mortgage program for those who have served in the United States Military and are eligible for this benefit through the Veterans Administration, this is my #1 favorite mortgage program because it serves the home buyer better than any mortgage program! The VA mortgage program has no credit score or debt to income requirement. There is no required minimum down payment until you get into the Jumbo price range or exceed your benefit. Qualifying for the VA mortgage can be quite easy, the guidelines do assure the home buyer are well qualified to own a home. You will need your DD214 and your Certificate of Eligibility for a VA mortgage. If you are a Veteran and are eligible for this great mortgage program, Thank You, and Congrats! Helping Veterans purchase a new home with little to no money out of pocket is simple and something I especially enjoy doing for my VA mortgage clients.



There are over 60 Down Payment Assistance programs available in and throughout the State of Missouri? Would you like to know what DPA programs are available to you? I can help!

Not all Mortgage Lenders offer or make available down payment assistance to home buyers. I can provide you with all the down payment assistance programs available locally or statewide.

The top Down Payment Assistance program is offered by the State of Missouri and is available all through our state. The Missouri Department of Housing Development or MHDC has multiple DPA programs and it can be very complicated, the training manual for lenders is 144 pages! I am an approved lender with MHDC, not all lenders are, and I know this program extremely well.

There are two MHDC First Time Home Buyer Programs, the Cash Assistance Loan (CAL) provides cash assistance up to 4% of the first mortgage for down payment and closing costs. The Non-Cash Assistance Loan (Non-Cal) provides a MUCH lower interest rate to first time home buyers who do not need down payment and closing cost assistance.

The Cash Assistance Program provides qualified first time home buyers a 4% second mortgage of the loan amount to be used for down payment and/or closing costs. The second mortgage is a 10 year forgivable cash assistance, the first 5 years you will pay back all the funds provided to you if you refinance or sell your home. After the first 5 years the amount you would owe if you sell or refinance diminishes every month by 1/60th of the about owed until it is gone. The second mortgage has no required monthly payment and no interest accrues on the second mortgage.

The Non-Cash Assistance Loan provides first time home buyers who do not need down payment and/or closing costs help a significantly lower interest rate that can be applied to your FHA, Conventional, VA, or USDA mortgage. These interest rates are well below what the mortgage marketplace is generally providing to home buyers. In today's higher interest rate environment getting a lower interest rate will help you save money every month plus possibly help you afford a little higher priced home. 

Qualifying for the MHDC Down Payment Assistance Program must be provided by an MHDC approved lender. The program requires a 640 or higher middle credit score for all borrowers. The program is designated for moderate or lower income households, though in some areas that income limit is over $100,000 annual income, household income is determined by family size and location of the house. The debt to income ratio for this program is  45%, but at times can go up to 50% debt to income ratio. You do not have to be a first time home buyer but there are more options available if you are a first time home buyer.


Yes, there is quite a bit left! I have an in-house dpwn payment assistance program that will allow for a credit score as low as a 600 middle score from all borrowers, with a debt to income ratio up to 50% of your gross monthly income. There are many local municipality, county, and regional provided down payment assistance programs, as I mentioned there are over 60 DPA programs and MHDC only offers a portion of what you could be eligible for. I work with every DPA program in the State of Missouri, I will help you find the best program available.  Use the Quiz at the end and I will tell you what DPA programs you are qualified for.


The The State of Missouri MHDC also provides a subsidized Mortgage Interest Rate that will beat any Lender out there! The MHDC Non-Cash Assistance Loan provides first time home buyers who do not need funds for their down payment and/or closing costs help in a significantly lower interest rate that can be applied to your FHA, Conventional, VA, or USDA mortgage. These interest rates are well below what the mortgage marketplace is generally providing to home buyers. In today's higher interest rate environment getting a lower interest rate will help you save money every month plus help you afford a little higher priced home. There is nothing to pay back to the State of Missouri just have the required 640 or higher credit score, be within the income guidelines, and qualify for a mortgage. If you are already pre-approved with another lender the Non-CAL mortgage interest rates may make your mortgage situation better!


Down payment is what most home buyers are saving for when they are wanting to purchase a new home but what many miss is that there are going to be closing costs associated with purchasing that new home and the mortgage you will need. There are lender fees and costs that are part of your closing costs, plus title fees, inspections, home owner's insurance, setting up your escrow account to pay for taxes and insurances, the cost of the appraisal, per diem interest, and a few more items that will make up your total closing costs. Depending on the mortgage program, if there is down payment assistance, and the loan size closing costs could range from 3 to 6 percent of the sales price of your new home! Of course you can save for the closing costs, but there are other ways to have those closing costs paid for you.

All mortgage programs allow for what is referred to as seller concessions to help a home buyer with the payment of their closing costs, these seller concessions are negotiated by you or your real estate agent during the time you are providing an offer on the home. It is very common, even in a seller market, in Missouri for sellers to provide seller concessions to a home buyer. FHA, VA, and USDA will allow up to 6% of the sales price for a seller concession and all conventional mortgage programs will allow up to a 3% seller concession. Keep in mind that the seller concession can only be used for your closing costs and nothing else. 

As you mortgage lender we can provide a lender credit that will help you with reducing your closing costs, the amount that a lender can provide you in a lender credit is not as much as you would get with a seller concession. the most I have every provided to a home buyer was a 2% lender credit to help with closing costs. Lenders provide a lender credit through offering a higher interest rate to you and using the premium they receive to be provided to you at the time of closing. In a time when interest rates are very low using a lender credit becomes very useful. I will mention here that with some down payment assistance programs a lender credit is impossible to provide due to the guidelines of the DPA program.

There is one mortgage program that will allow you to roll in the closing costs into your mortgage, the USDA Rural Development mortgage program. If your house appraises for higher than the asking price it becomes possible to use that additional value in your home to increase the loan amount to pay for some if not all of your closing costs. A combination of seller concession, a higher appraised value, and a lender credit has served many home buyers very well to reduce or pay for all closing costs for you as the home buyer. 



I specialized in helping new home buyers purchase their next new home with little to no money out of their pockets. Why do I specialize in little to no money out of pocket home purchases? Because in many instances new home buyers purchase a new home and use up all or a large portion of their savings and resources when there are better alternatives. Having some or all of those saved funds available not for the new home purchase but for the new home after closing can make a big difference for many home buyers. I read a recent report that stated that the average home buyer will spend $8,000 to $10,000 within the first year of purchasing a new home. I know that is why, per Housing Wire, that the biggest regret of new homeowners is that they don't have enough savings after closing because it all went to down payment and closing costs. I try to help alleviate that regret! 

Learn more about the Missouri ZERO Program            BE A CASH HOME BUYER WITH A MORTGAGE              

The Buyer Accepted Program, BAP, is an exclusive home buying program that helps you get your offers to purchase moved up to the top of the stack. In today's home buying market First Time Home Buyers are under more pressure to find a home than ever, investors are purchasing their homes, institutional buyers are competing too, along with all the other first time home buyers who generally represent 30 to 35 percent of all home buyers every year. Did you know that cash buyers are now about 25% of the purchases in todays home buying environment? 

According to a recent study from researchers at the University of California-San Diego, cash buyers have paid about 12% less than those using a mortgage? The BAP program allows you to be that cash buyer AND have a mortgage. Research also shows that buyers armed with cash offers are going under contract 7 times faster than financed buyers! You can take advantage of this too!

The Buyer Accepted Program will purchase your next new home for you using cash/funds directly from New American Funding, then we will provide the mortgage after the cash closing. Before you go home shopping you will be pre-approved for a Conventional, VA, or Jumbo mortgage by an Underwriter, this will allow you to shop for a home as a cash buyer or if you elect as a mortgage financed home buyer. Whatever works best for you. If you can be approved for a mortgage you can be a cash home buyer too!


By now I am sure you have heard that interest rates have increase and are no longer at historic lows and that interest rates may continue to go up and that they are highly volatile. The Lock and Shop rate lock option with New American Funding will allow you to lock into an interest rate up to 120 days while you shop for a new home. You will need to find a home and close within the 120 days, though we do provide for a 30 day lock extension should you need some more time.  Lock and Shop is available for Conventional, FHA, and VA mortgages. You can use the interest rate you locked in to or if interest rates have gone lower you will have the opportunity to float down.

Interest rates change daily and of late there are days that they change within the same day, sometimes more! Help protect yourself against the volatility of the marketplace by locking in a rate and then shopping for your Next New Home!


Renovation mortgages like the FHA 203k or the Fannie Mae HomeStyle are great option for First Time Home Buyers to have available to them when they are looking for their new home. Sellers today are listing homes As Is, Conventional Only, and other restrictive alternatives that are keeping some first time home buyers from making offers. Renovation mortgages fix nearly all those restrictive items and helps you open your home buying search to nearly every home on the market. In some instances renovation mortgages will help with the removal of some contract contingency like appraisal and inspections making your offer more attractive to sellers. 

An advantage of renovation mortgages for many is that the mortgage finances your repairs and updates plus the purchase costs allowing you to buy a home that you like but has issues, the renovation mortgage can fix those issues, update, and refresh your soon to be new home. 

I am a Certified Renovation Mortgage Specialist, I know these programs very well and better than most. I can answer all your questions about these programs and help get you get prepared and approved for a FHA 203k or HomeStyle renovation home loan. In my website here I have a lot of very useful information about renovation mortgages if you would like to do some home work on renovation mortgages.



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