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  • USDA Rural Development Loans

    USDA lender MN WI SD

    USDA Loan Application | USDA Interest Rates  | USDA Streamline Refinance |

    Want to buy a rural home?  Like No Down Payment? Then this mortgage loan is for you!

    The US Department of Agriculture administers a means tested mortgage loan guarantee program called the USDA Rural Development Loan. Commonly referred to as just a USDA Loan, RD, or Rural Housing loan.

    This USDA loan is designed to provide low cost housing for those wanting to live in rural areas, and is primarily for first time home buyers, although you do not need to be a first time home buyer to use this program.

    Prospective home buyers in MN, WI, IA, ND, SD can apply for a USDA Home Loan right on this web site.

    You DO NOT need to go through a USDA office to get this loan.

    This is not a “farm” loan. You can not use it to buy a farm. Rather it is a mortgage loan that is designed to support housing in rural communities. Not all “rural” areas are in the middle of a cornfield. Many areas of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota all qualify for USDA financing. We can help you determine if your area is eligible

  • USDA Loan Program Highlights

    • Zero down payment - You can finance 100% of the purchase price
    • Roll your closing costs into the loan (known as seller paid closing costs, or seller concessions)
    • Very cheap mortgage insurance compared to other mortgage loans options
    • Homes more affordable, and more people qualify because of low PMI
    • Good credit or better required - Doesn't need to be perfect, but bad credit not OK (less than 620 score)
  • USDA Income Limits: 

    All USDA loans in MN, WI, IA, ND, or SD have household income limits to qualify. The loan is a "means tested" program, which states that you or your family can't make too much money. There are allowable income adjustments for minor children (family size), child care expenses, and elderly family members. Most moderate to middle income families WILL qualify. You can easily check income limits for your family size, state, and county on the USDA Loan income eligibility web site.

    USDA Rural Areas Only:

    Basically, a rural area for the USDA loan is anything outside a major metropolitan area. This may be closer to the big city than you think, so be sure to check the property eligibility map to make sure the area you wish to buy a home fits USDA's property location guidelines.

    No Down Payment Required:

    Unlike conventional loans and even FHA loans, USDA Home Loans do not require any down payment. This is especially beneficial for first time home buyers. Saving up a down payment can be very difficult. Utilizing a USDA Home Loan means that is no longer an issue.

    House Price Limit: 

    The maximum purchase price of the house you can buy with a USDA loan will vary by State and County. As this is ever changing, please contact us at (651) 552-3681,or click here to quickly send us a question.

    Type of Home: 

    The home must be on a publicly maintained road, or in a development with private roads. It must be a single family home (no duplexes), must be owner occupied (no investment homes), and may not produce income.

    No business can operate on the property. 

    A hobby farm is OK, but agricultural land that is getting farm income (even from renting part of the land), or any property that will be farmed is not OK. Properties that have a significant number of building other than the home itself, such as pole sheds, old barns, and old silo's can be an issue with the USDA Loan, so be sure to contact us to discuss any questionable properties BEFORE signing a purchase agreement.

    USDA Closing Costs: 

    All mortgage loans have closing costs. Lender fees, appraisal, credit report, title company, state taxes, origination fees, and more. These are the buyer costs that need to be paid at closing. The best way is always for the buyer to pay cash.  But as most first time home buyers have limited funds, so this can be a problem.

    You are also allowed with a USDA loan to roll the closing costs into the loan with "seller paid closing costs", also known as seller concessions. Or you can pay them by taking a slightly higher interest rate. Under these two options, you are still paying for the closing costs, but you are essentially paying over time versus cash out of pocket today. How cool is that?

    Sellers Concession

    A sellers concession allows the seller to pay for some (or all) of your closing costs out of their proceeds from the sale of the home. Couple that with 100% financing that is available, and you can be in a home without any of your own money, meaning you can keep your money in savings to cover any expenses that arise.

    Financed Closing Costs:

    On some purchase transactions, foreclosures and short sales in particular, a sellers concession is not possible. A USDA Home Loan allows the financing of the closing costs even if the seller will not agree to a sellers concession. All of the closing costs (except discount points) can be financed, up to 100% of the appraised value of the home. This is extremely beneficial when a sellers concession is not an option, but is hard to depend on, because we don't know if it is available until AFTER the appraisal is completed.

    The next "financed" option is by taking a higher interest rate.  For example, if you take the current interest rate and increase it about 1/2%, the lender can eliminate most, if not all your closing costs.

  • Unacceptable USDA Loan Credit Items:

    If you have any of the following items, you will not qualify for the USDA loan in MN, WI, IA, ND, or SD.  You may qualify for other loans (like an FHA loan), so be sure to contact us for more information on other loan options:

    • Poor Credit (middle credit score BELOW 620)
    • Delinquent Government Debt (back taxes, student loans)
    • More than 2 late mortgage or rent payments in the past 12 months
    • Any credit account turned into a collection account in the past 12 months
    • Unpaid Tax Liens (must be paid off to buy)
    • Foreclosure less than 3-years old
    • Bankruptcy Chapter 7 less than 3-years old
    • Bankruptcy Chapter 13 less than 1-year old
    • You have more than 20% of the purchase price in the bank (this does NOT include retirement accounts like a 401k)

    DON'T QUALIFY FOR A USDA Loan?  There are other home loan possibilities. DON'T ASSUME you can't qualify for something else.

    Call (651) 552-3681 to discuss your personal situation. For example, with an FHA loan, a bankruptcy only needs to be two-years old, and we can offer loans with a credit score of 620. We also offer down payment assistance loans, that require only as little as $1,000 of your own money. If you are active military or a Veteran, a VA Home Loan only requires two-years past a foreclosure or a bankruptcy.

  • Already have a USDA Mortgage Loan Pre-Approval?

    It pays to compare! Especially if you are pre-approved with your Real Estate Agent's own company or a bank.

    Client Testimonials

    "Thanks for all your help and explanations. The people at the USDA office had me confused. I'm sure glad I switch to you for my USDA loan" 
    Mary M.  - Aitkin, MN 

    "Both you and the USDA loan rock!  I bought my dream house with just $250 total out of my pocket. I will gladly recommend you to anyone who is also seeking a home mortgage."
    -Tim W. Hudson, WI

    (Read more client testimonials)

  • USDA Loan Interest Rates

    USDA Rural Development Loan Interest Rates are lower than conventional mortgage loan interest rates, adding to the benefit of using a USDA loan to buy your home. As with all mortgage loans, the USDA loan interest rates can and do change on a regular basis. It is best to complete a full USDA Loan Application, and let one of our licensed USDA loan Experts review your full application to determine qualifications, and what your actual interest rate may be.

    Check USDA Loan Interest Rates

    You can check current national average USDA Loan Interest Rates for MN, WI, IA, ND, and SD.

    The FHA and USDA rates are the same.

    Complete our Quick Qualifier form, to get a Loan Estimate sent directly to you based on your personal situation.

  • USDA Streamline Refinance

    If you have an existing USDA loan in MN, WI, IA, ND, or SD, you are eligible to refinance your home to a lower interest rate just like any other loan, with a streamlined process. 

    The biggest benefit of the USDA streamline refinance is there is NO APPRAISAL REQUIRED, but you do need to be lowering your interest rate at least 1%, and the closing costs can not be rolled into the new loan amount like you can with other refinances.

    You either have to pay them out of pocket, or the lender can roll them into the loan, but we do so by increasing the interest rate.  Because of this, for most people, it may make more sense to do a standard conventional loan refinance if possible.

  • In order to qualify for a USDA Streamline Refinance, you must meet the following:

    • Have an existing USDA Rural Development Loan on your home
    • The existing loan to be refinanced was closed at over 1-year ago
    • You must have been current on your existing loan for at least the past 12-months.
    • Be lowering the existing loan interest rate by 1%
    • The new principal, interest, taxes and insurance (PITI) monthly amount is less that the monthly PITI amount on the existing loan.


  • HUD, The VA, and the USDA requires those who offer their mortgage loans go through a stringent approval process. We are an approved FHA, VA, and USDA mortgage lender.

    We are not acting on behalf of, or under the direction of the VA or the Federal Government. HUD / FHA and the VA do not lend directly to the public, only through approved lending institutions like us here at Cambria Mortgage. 

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