Top 5 Things to Know About USDA Rural Development Mortgage Appraisals!

When it comes to purchasing a home in rural areas, many homebuyers turn to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development Mortgage program. This program offers attractive financing options, including low-interest rates and zero down payment requirements. However, it’s crucial to understand the appraisal process associated with USDA Rural Development Mortgages. In this blog post, we will discuss the top five things you need to know about USDA Rural Development Mortgage appraisals.

  1. Appraisal Requirements and Purpose: Appraisals play a significant role in the USDA Rural Development Mortgage application process. The primary purpose of an appraisal is to determine the fair market value of the property you intend to purchase. USDA appraisals ensure that the property meets the program’s eligibility criteria, including location in an eligible rural area and compliance with health and safety standards.
  2. Qualified Appraisers: USDA Rural Development Mortgages require appraisals to be performed by a qualified and licensed appraiser. These appraisers are experienced professionals who are knowledgeable about the specific requirements and guidelines outlined by the USDA. Choosing a qualified appraiser is essential to ensure an accurate assessment of the property’s value.
  3. Property Eligibility: USDA Rural Development Mortgages are intended to promote homeownership in rural areas, and the property you wish to purchase must meet specific eligibility criteria. The appraisal process will verify that the property is located in an eligible rural area. The USDA provides an online tool, the Eligibility Map, to help determine whether a particular property is eligible for financing under this program.
  4. Condition and Safety Standards: During the appraisal, the appraiser will evaluate the property’s condition and ensure it meets certain safety standards. The property should be structurally sound and free from hazards that could affect the health and safety of the occupants. The appraiser will examine the roof, foundation, electrical systems, plumbing, and other key components to ensure they are in good working order.
  5. Appraisal Challenges: It’s important to note that USDA Rural Development Mortgage appraisals may present some unique challenges compared to traditional appraisals. Due to the program’s focus on rural areas, finding comparable sales can be more difficult, especially if there are limited recent sales in the area. Additionally, appraisals may take longer to complete due to the rural nature of the properties.

Understanding the appraisal process is crucial when applying for a USDA Rural Development Mortgage. By familiarizing yourself with the top five things discussed in this blog post, you can navigate the appraisal process with confidence. Remember to choose a qualified appraiser, ensure the property meets eligibility criteria, and be aware of the condition and safety standards required. By doing so, you’ll increase your chances of a successful appraisal and a smooth path to homeownership in rural America.

Understanding USDA RD Home Loan for Mobile Homes: A Comprehensive Guide in 2023

Understanding USDA RD Home Loan for Mobile Homes: 

When it comes to purchasing a home, many individuals and families dream of having a place to call their own. However, the process of obtaining a home loan can sometimes be daunting, especially for those interested in mobile homes. Fortunately, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) offers a unique financing option called the USDA RD Home Loan for Mobile Homes that specifically caters to individuals seeking to finance mobile homes in rural areas. In this blog post, we will delve into the details of the USDA RD Home Loan for mobile homes, exploring its eligibility criteria, benefits, and application process.


1. Understanding the USDA RD Home Loan:

The USDA Rural Development (RD) Home Loan program is designed to provide affordable housing opportunities for individuals and families in rural areas. While traditionally associated with single-family dwellings, the program also extends its support to include eligible manufactured and modular homes. Mobile homes, spotify music promotion also known as manufactured homes, can be financed through the USDA RD Home Loan program, subject to certain requirements.


2. Eligibility Criteria for Mobile Homes:

To qualify for the USDA RD Home Loan for mobile homes, applicants must meet specific eligibility criteria, which include:

a. Location Requirements: The mobile home must be situated within an eligible rural area designated by the USDA. These areas are typically characterized by populations of fewer than 35,000 residents.

b. Property Requirements: The mobile home must meet the HUD Manufactured Home Construction and Safety Standards (MHCSS) and be classified as a single-section or multi-section home.

c. Ownership Requirements: Applicants must either own the land where the mobile home will be placed or secure a long-term lease for a minimum of three years.

d. Applicant Requirements: Prospective borrowers must meet the income requirements established by the USDA. The income limits are determined based on the location of the property and the number of individuals in the household.


3. Benefits of USDA RD Home Loan for Mobile Homes:

Choosing a USDA RD Home Loan for financing a mobile home offers several advantages, including:

a. No Down Payment: One of the most significant benefits is that the USDA RD Home Loan does not require a down payment, making homeownership more accessible for individuals with limited funds.

b. Competitive Interest Rates: USDA RD Home Loans offer competitive interest rates, which can result in lower monthly mortgage payments.

c. Flexible Credit Requirements: The program provides some flexibility in credit requirements, making it feasible for individuals with less-than-perfect credit scores to secure financing.

d. No Mortgage Insurance: Unlike many other loan programs, the USDA RD Home Loan does not require private mortgage insurance (PMI). This can further reduce the overall cost of homeownership.


4. Applying for a USDA RD Home Loan for Mobile Homes:

To apply for a USDA RD Home Loan for a mobile home, prospective borrowers should follow these steps:

a. Find an Approved Lender: Research and select a USDA-approved lender who is experienced in mobile home financing.

b. Gather Required Documentation: Prepare necessary documents such as proof of income, employment history, credit history, and identification.

c. Complete the Loan Application: Fill out the loan application provided by the lender and submit it along with the required documentation.

d. Await Loan Approval: The lender will review the application and documentation and determine if the borrower meets the eligibility requirements. If approved, Tornado Cash the loan moves to the closing process.

e. Closing and Loan Disbursement: Once the loan is approved, the borrower and lender will finalize the loan agreement, and the funds will be disbursed accordingly.



The USDA RD Home Loan for mobile homes is an excellent option for those looking to purchase a manufactured home in a rural area. By understanding the eligibility requirements, benefits, and application process, prospective homeowners can make informed decisions and navigate the loan process more effectively. If you dream of owning a mobile home in a rural setting, exploring the USDA RD Home Loan program could be the key to turning your dream into a reality.

Rural Development Construction Loan? Great News! Build a New Home with 0 Down!

Having a hard time locating an existing home that qualifies for Rural Development Housing? Build a New Home with a Rural Development Construction Loan.

Building your dream home is an exciting endeavor, but navigating the complexities of construction financing can be daunting. Thankfully, the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development (USDA RD) offers a valuable solution known as the One Time Close Construction Loan. This financing option streamlines the construction process by combining the construction loan and permanent mortgage into one convenient package. In this blog post, we will explore the key features, benefits, and eligibility criteria of the USDA RD One Time Close Construction Loan.

1. Understanding the Rural Development Construction Loan:

The USDA RD One Time Close Construction Loan is designed to simplify the financing process for individuals or families looking to build a home in eligible rural areas. This loan program eliminates the need for borrowers to secure separate loans for land acquisition, construction, and permanent mortgage financing. Instead, the construction loan and permanent mortgage are bundled into one loan with a single closing, saving borrowers time and money.

2. Key Features and Benefits:

a. Streamlined Process: With the Rural Development Construction Loan, borrowers benefit from a simplified and streamlined financing process. Rather than dealing with multiple loans and closings, they can secure construction financing and permanent mortgage financing in one efficient transaction.

b. Cost Savings with a Rural Development Construction Loan: Combining the loans into a single package can result in significant cost savings. Borrowers only pay one set of closing costs, reducing overall expenses associated with the construction project.

c. Lower Interest Rates: The USDA RD One Time Close Construction Loan offers competitive interest rates, providing borrowers with more affordable financing options. This can lead to long-term savings over the life of the loan.

d. Flexible Financing Options: The loan program offers various financing options, including fixed-rate mortgages and adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs). Borrowers can choose the option that best suits their financial goals and preferences.

3. Eligibility Criteria for Rural Development Construction Loans:

a. Location: The USDA RD One Time Close Construction Loan is available for eligible rural areas designated by the USDA. These areas are typically outside metropolitan regions and have specific population requirements.

b. Income Limits: Borrowers must meet certain income limits to qualify for the loan. The USDA RD sets these limits based on the area’s median income and the number of individuals in the household.

c. Creditworthiness: Like any loan program, borrowers are subject to creditworthiness requirements. While specific credit score requirements may vary, having a solid credit history and a good credit score improves the chances of approval.

4. The Application Process:

To apply for the Rural Development Construction Loan, borrowers can work with approved lenders, such as LeaderOne Home Loans. The application process typically involves providing the necessary financial documentation, such as income verification, credit history, and details of the construction project. AFR and other approved lenders will guide borrowers through the process, helping them navigate the paperwork and requirements.


The Rural Development Construction Loan is an excellent financing option for individuals or families planning to build a home in eligible rural areas. With its streamlined process, cost savings, competitive interest rates, and flexible financing options, this loan program simplifies the construction financing journey. By partnering with approved lenders, borrowers can turn their dream of building a home into a reality. If you are considering building a home in a rural area, the Rural Development Construction Loan is worth exploring as a convenient and affordable financing solution.

Reach out. We are here to guide you.

Stop Renting! Buy a NEW Home with 0 Down – USDA Maine Loan Requirements

Become a homeowner in Maine with zero down.

Wondering what the USDA Maine Loan Requirements are to qualify for a new home?

The USDA RD Loan program is designed to provide affordable financing for eligible individuals and families in rural communities. In this blog post, we will delve into the USDA Maine Loan Requirements, helping you understand the qualifications and steps needed to secure this type of loan.

What is a USDA loan?

USDA home loans are residential mortgages backed by the Department of Agriculture. They’re available to eligible borrowers buying homes in suburban or rural areas of a state. USDA Maine loan requirements are aimed at helping low- to moderate-income families purchase safe homes in less densely populated areas.

USDA loans can go by a few different names, including Rural Development or RD loans, or even “Section 502” loans—named for the USDA rulebook section that describes the home loan program. Despite the “rural” element, USDA loans are only available for single-family, owner-occupied homes; you can’t use USDA loans to purchase farms, investment properties, or vacation homes.

USDA Maine Loan Requirements

Location Eligibility

The USDA RD Loan program primarily focuses on assisting borrowers in rural areas. Before proceeding, it is essential to ensure that the property you wish to purchase or refinance falls within a designated rural area. The USDA provides an online tool called the “USDA Property Eligibility Map” that can help you determine whether your desired location qualifies. Mine is a great place to qualify for a USDA RD mortgage as most of Maine is considered Rural. Tip: Avoid Portland, Lewiston, Auburn.

For more info on eligible areas, head to the USDA property eligibility screen.

Income Eligibility

What are the USDA Maine Loan Requirements for income? The program aims to support low- to moderate-income households. The eligibility is determined based on the total household income, including income from all adult members of the household. USDA uses income limits based on the area’s median income, family size, and the number of individuals who are dependents or elderly.

The majority of Maine falls under the USDA income limit for 1-4 member households of $103,500. Most households in Maine with between 5-8 members have a $136,600 income threshold. You can find all Maine USDA income limits here.

Citizenship or Residency

USDA RD Loans are available to both U.S. citizens and non-citizens who are legally residing in the United States. Non-citizens must provide proof of eligible immigration status, such as a permanent resident card (Green Card), work visa, or other appropriate documentation.


While USDA RD Loans are known for being accessible to borrowers with limited credit history, the loan program does have some credit requirements. Lenders will assess your creditworthiness by reviewing your credit score, credit history, and overall financial situation. It is important to have a reasonably good credit standing and a demonstrated ability to repay the loan.

There’s no minimum credit requirement for the USDA loan, however, borrowers with a credit score of 640 or higher are eligible for streamline processing, an automated underwriting process. Borrowers with a credit score lower than 640 are still eligible to receive a USDA loan, though they will be subject to the standard underwriting process. If you have a nontraditional or no credit history, you might still be eligible for a USDA loan; lenders evaluate such applications on a case-by-case basis.


Loan Repayment Ability

Lenders will evaluate your ability to make regular mortgage payments by considering your income, debts, and other financial obligations. A steady and reliable source of income is crucial for loan approval. Lenders typically require a debt-to-income ratio (DTI) of no more than 41%. This means that your monthly debts, including the new mortgage payment, should not exceed 41% of your monthly income.

Exceptions can be made up to 46% with compensating factors like cash reserves, strong credit, and additional assets.

Property Requirements

USDA RD Loans have specific property requirements to ensure the safety and livability of the homes financed under the program. The property should be located in a designated rural area and must be the borrower’s primary residence. Additionally, the property must meet certain quality standards and safety guidelines.

Things to look for but can be fixed prior to Appraisal: Peeling Paint, Missing Handrails, Broken Stairs

USDA uses property standard guidelines similar to those set out by the FHA.

USDA Mortgage Insurance

When obtaining a USDA loan, borrowers are responsible for two types of mortgage insurance fees: the Annual fee and the Guarantee fee.

Guarantee Fee

At the time of closing, borrowers are required to pay a Guarantee fee that amounts to 1% of their total loan amount. For instance, if you have a $300,000 mortgage, the one-time fee would be $3,000. To make it more convenient for borrowers, many choose to include the USDA Guarantee Fee in their loan, which helps reduce upfront expenses.

Annual Fee

In addition to the Guarantee fee, there is also an annual fee that is calculated at 0.35% of the remaining outstanding mortgage balance. This annual fee is divided into 12 equal portions and is added to the borrower’s regular monthly mortgage payment.

To provide an estimate, for every $100,000 borrowed, the annual fee amounts to approximately $29 per month. So, for a $300,000 mortgage, borrowers would pay an extra $87 as part of their monthly mortgage payment.

Importance of Fees

Both the Guarantee and Annual fees play a crucial role in supporting the sustainability of the USDA loan program on a national level. These fees help maintain the availability of loans and ensure the program remains viable for future homebuyers.

USDA Loan Down Payment and Closing Costs

USDA loans Maine require a $0 down payment. USDA loans allow borrowers to finance 100% of their home’s purchase price.

Borrowers do need to cover closing costs, however, which typically equal between 3-5% of the home’s purchase price. Closing costs include loan origination fees, title fees, and more. Sellers can contribute up to 6% in seller paid closings cost. Your agent can negotiate this for you after your Maine Mortgage Lender prequalifies you.

The USDA does permit borrowers to use other sources, such as monetary gifts from family, to pay closing costs. Your Lender will discuss all options for closing cost that meet USDA Maine Loan Requirements.


The USDA Rural Development Loan program provides an excellent opportunity for individuals and families to achieve homeownership in rural areas. By meeting the USDA Maine Loan Requirements above, you can increase your chances of securing a USDA RD Loan. Remember to verify the eligibility of the property location, ensure your income falls within the guidelines, establish a reasonable credit history, demonstrate loan repayment ability, and select a property that meets the program’s standards.

It is important to consult with a reputable lender who understand the USDA Maine Loan Requirements to guide you through the application process and provide personalized advice based on your circumstances. With determination, proper preparation, and the necessary documentation, you can navigate the USDA Maine loan requirements and make your dream of rural homeownership a reality.

Maine USDA RD Loans are our specialty. We have helped many first time buyers and previous home owners achieve homeownership with no money down and closing cost paid by the seller. If you would like to apply for a Maine USDA Home Loan today with no cost or obligation, please reach out today via phone, email or text! You can apply online right from your phone here.

– Seth

Seth Jacobs is a Branch Manager with LeaderOne Home Loans of Maine.

We are not the U.S. Department of Agriculture. If you wish to contact them you can do so by visiting their site at LeaderOne Home Loans originates USDA RD Mortgage Loans and is here to help navigate borrowers through the USDA Maine Loan Requirements to qualify for USDA RD Commitment. NMLS 249610