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First Time Home Buyer




Who is a First Time Home Buyer?

We consider a First Time Home Buyer as someone who has never owned a home, or has not owned a home within the last 3 years. With a  660 or above, our First Time Home Buyer loan product is designed to

It is important to evaluate your current financial situation and long term goals when deciding if you are ready to purchase a home. If you are currently renting, you should consider the additional expenses you may not have had to pay while renting, like trash, water, or sanitation that could push home ownership out of your budget. Alternatively, reallocating the money you spend on rent towards a mortgage will ultimately give you an asset, which could be the best fit for your future wants and needs, despite the added costs. 

Typically, the rule of thumb is that your mortgage payment should not exceed 28% of your annual income. However, the amount of money you should spend on your mortgage depends on several additional factors like your credit score, the amount you will need to borrow, and the particular loan product you have. Aside from the money you will need for a down payment, you will also need to consider closing and prepaid costs, home inspections, and furnishings or home repairs later down the road. For qualifying buyers, we offer a down payment as low as 10%.

Purchasing your first home can be both exciting and overwhelming. We are here to help guide you to a solution that is a healthy balance between your budget and long term home ownership goals. Send us a message to get started. 


 Our Loan Options


Generally, there are four loan options for first time home buyers : Conventional, FHA, VA, and USDA. We match all first time home buyers with a Convential Loan. FHA, VA, and USDA loans can offer lower minimum down payments, but they each have specific eligibility requirements that require government approval -- increasing processing time, and often require the purchase of private mortgage insurance (PMI).  

Our conventional loan is a tailored mortgage program that addresses typical first time buyer challenges. We offer a minimum 10% down payment for qualifying applicants and a 7 year ARM that gives you flexibility with your monthly payment.

PIGGY BACK LOAN (80/10/10)

For qualifying buyers, we have a unique loan option available described as a "piggy back loan". Structured as two separate loans, a larger loan covers the initial mortgage, or up to 80% of the home's value, and is "piggy backed" by a second, smaller loan, covering 10% of the home's value. The remaining 10% comes from the borrower's down payment. Typically, this loan is used by prospective home buyers to avoid paying private mortgage insurance. Both loans are tax decuctable, and you are only required to pay interest payments on the smaller loan, functioning similarly to a HELOC.

Contact us to learn more about the qualifications to determine if you are eligibile. 


A fixed rate mortgage is a financing option that allows borrowers to effectively maintain a long-term budget. With a fixed-rate mortgage, the interest rate on the loan remains the same through the term of the loan, giving borrowers who want relatively consistent payments the ability to take advantage of low rates while they are available. This loan type is popular among borrowers who plan to live in their newly purchased home for more than 5-10 years. 

We offer fixed rate mortgages for loan terms ranging from 5 years to 30 years. The length of the term determines the amount of your monthly payments. With a shorter term loan, like a 5 year or 10 year, you will have less payments than you would with a longer term loan, but the monthly payment amount will be higher because the payback time is condensed. 


An adjustable rate mortgage is 
a financing option that allows borrowers to take advantage of falling interest rates without having to refinance. With an adjustable rate mortgage, the interest rate on the loan is initially set at a fixed-rate for a certain period of time, and is followed by periodic adjustments to the rate based off the current index value (?). Often having a lower initial interest rate than a fixed-rate mortgage, an adjustable rate mortgage is ideal for buyers who plan to sell their home after a few years, allowing them to avoid a potentially higher index value after the rate adjusts. 

Our adjustable rate mortgages are available for 1,3,5, or 7 year terms. The rates adjust after the term and each year thereafter according to the type of ARM. 

All situations are unique to each homeowner. We will work with you to determine a loan term that is best for your budget and home ownership goals. Let's get started. 




Meet with us to discuss your financing options before you begin your home search. It is important to get pre-qualified for a loan before you begin searching for a new home, so you have a clear idea of what you can afford and estimate associated costs.  To get started, you will need to submit a selection of documents. We will use these to determine the loan program that is the best fit for your needs and budget.  View the complete list, here.
Once we have chosen the loan program that is the best fit for you, your loan will go through the underwriting process - a proccess that assesses your loan to ensure it is of acceptable risk and meets all necessary guidelines. The time to complete the underwriting process varies; during this time, you should begin working with a realtor to shop for your new home. View the list of realtors, here.
After you have chosen your new home and your offer has been accepted, we will request the completion of an inspection and appraisal. These are used to evaluate the condition of the home, and also to ensure the value of the property alligns with the contract price. If you are satisfied with the inspection, you should begin to shop for home insurance. Meanwhile, we will submit the appraisal for approval and begin to schedule a closing date with the title company. Begin shopping for insurance, here. 
After you have chosen your new home and your offer has been accepted, we will request the completion of an inspection and appraisal. These are used to evaluate the condition of the home, and also to ensure the value of the property alligns with the contract price. If you are satisfied with the inspection, you should begin to shop for home insurance. Meanwhile, we will submit the appraisal for approval and begin to schedule a closing date with the title company. Begin shopping for insurance, here. 




We have a simple draw process that is designed to meet the needs of your builder, and you. In general, a draw is simply the process of withdrawing funds from your loan and using them as payment for the various stages of construction. During the first 12 months, your builder will make draws as work is completed. Your down payment funds will be used first in the draw process.These funds will not be released until we have completed an inspection to verifiy that the work has been completed. The inspector is typically the appraiser that has been assigned to your project. Cinfed will maintain the percentage drawn from the construction loan and match the percentage of work that is complete. Keeping this in balance protects all parties involved.

Draw Requests

The builder will request draws as work is completed. The only time a member will need to request a draw, is if there is work outside of the builder’s contract/scope of work. Work outside of the builder’s contract/scope is mentioned in “How it Works” (above) as part of your plans, and will need to be addressed before your loan closing. An affidavit will be signed by the builder and homeowner (provided by Cinfed). Each draw will have a Fee of up to $100. Any draw fees not used can be reimbursed after the final draw is made. A title update will be completed for each draw to verify a clear title is being maintained. Builders can find more information on requesting draws here(link). Members that will have work that is completed by someone other than the builder can find more information here(link).




Cinfed Credit Union
4801 Kennedy Avenue
Cincinnati, OH 45209
(513) 333-3800
Routing #242076656


Liz and the gang have surpassed all my notions about what banking should be, they bring unparalleled customer service to the table. So much that whenever I walk in, I am greeted like good neighbors... 
— D English
I have been a member since 1968. That is the year I started with IRS. I think we have used every service Cinfed has to offer. 2 home mortgages, personal loan ,RCA, car loan. They have always been... 
— Jan, member since 1968
I love Cinfed! They treat us like family!!
— James, member since 1990
Dedicated member since 1972. Cinfed has been there every time I have needed them. Being without Cinfed now, well it would be like losing a member of the family.
— Norma, member since 1972
The one-stop banking capability for home mortgages, automobile loans, savings accounts and credit cards...all with very competitive rates...makes being a member of Cinfed a very smart, invaluable... 
— Carl, member since 1978
When purchasing a car for my daughter, Cinfed came through for me once again. They worked out every detail of the purchase loan right from the dealership lot, including setting up an online account... 
— Crissy, member since 1995
I have been a member of Cinfed almost as long as I've worked at IRS which is since 1975. I'll not bank anywhere else. The service I get from people like Jewel and Jennifer "J" at Gateway... 
— Linda, member since 1978
I joined Cinfed over 18 years ago. I love the chance that they give you to get things right. My family loves this too! What I would love to see this bank do is to notify customers via email... 
— Delores, member since 1986
When my previous bank refused to cash a corporate paycheck with one of the largest financial institutions, I went to Cinfed off of a members recommendation and without a question they cashed my... 
— Phil, member since 2008
I have had Cinfed for 14 years. They are the best bank I have ever had. They are always there to help me out of any jam I get into, with a friendly smile!!! Thank you Cinfed!!!
— Eric, member since 2001
Cinfed is pretty much the best, most helpful bank I've ever used. I previously used another local bank, but was encouraged to try Cinfed by my girlfriend. I've come to expect very little of banks in... 
— Logan, member since 2010
My husband and I have been members of Cinfed for over 25 years. When he retired, we had limited involvement with Cinfed since it was very close to our workplace, but not our home. Recently we... 
— Cheryl, member since 1981
I have been a member of Cinfed Credit Union since 1986 when I started working for IRS. I recently spent a week in the hospital and four weeks in a skilled nursing facility going through rehab. The... 
— Suzanne, member since 1986
Cinfed is special for me. I moved to several states and Cinfed is the only account I kept with me wherever I go. Through the shared branching, I get all the service I need. Whenever I call, I am... 
— Tseagye, member since 2010
Cinfed rocks! I hope you guys understand that what you are offering are not just loans and accounts but things that mean much more than that, things that keep hope alive, that help people like me... 
— Pankaj, member since 2014
I joined Cinfed after my first season working for IRS in the early 1980's. Now over thirty years later, I am still impressed with them. Every customer service representation that I have been in... 
— Ros
I've been banking with Cinfed for almost one year now and it has been a wonderful experience. They get back to you very promptly and can help you for all of your banking needs, quite efficiently. I... 
— Brandon, member since 2014
I have been a member for over 25 years. I think good service should be recognized. Julie at the Roselawn branch always gives great service with a smile. She is also a very dedicated employee. ... 
— Rita, member since 1985
I have had most of my family to join. I will never change banks, the service is great.
— Joen, member since 1988
Love them as a bank and the customer service has always been outstanding...Great job Cinfed.
— Posey, member since 1984
We've only been members for a little over a month and already feel the difference. I don't want to name names, but let's just say Cinfed is WAY better than our previous institution that rhymes with... 
— Jeff, Dawn, & Jordan, members since 2013
I been a member since 1985 and can not imagine banking anywhere else. This credit union as taken care of my every need. 24/7 services is excellent.
— Edward, member since 1985
Just closed on a Home Equity line of credit loan, and the process couldn't have been any easier. With this I was able to pay off 2 high interest credit cards and deposited the rest into a checking... 
— Thomas
Recently I tried to locate the Oakley office using google maps. The google directions did not get me close to Cinfed. I called the office and Liz remained on the phone until I reached the... 
— Debbie G
As a long time member, I have always received great service from all CinFed employees. I just wanted to say a special thank you to Dee Dee Day and Dawn Strickland. I had to make some changes to... 
— John-Member since 1990
Earlier this year my much younger sister passed away and with that many obligations were to be met by my husband and myself ..My sister was survived by a daughter and son. We have since then taken on... 
— Vonda
How lucky I am to have Liz Frey managing the office I use! I live in Florida but maintain Cinfed as my main banking office. Everytime I need special help a simple email or call to Liz and it is... 
— Debbie G
Emily Snyder took the best care of my two auto loans. She was professional, courteous and very knowledgeable of the available services for me. She went out of her way to make sure I felt like I was... 
— Sarah Amyotte

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