Mortgage Program Overview

Mortgage Program Overview

With the large variety of mortgage options in the marketplace, it is important you know some of the basic differences to help you to determine which program is best for you. What you will find below are some of the basic programs and the primary advantages and disadvantages.

Not all of the programs available are listed below and depending on the overall fiscal policy of the US Federal Reserve and banking institutions some of these programs may be easier or harder to qualify for and have varied availability.

As always we highly recommend that you speak with a reputable mortgage lender about your options and current market conditions. If you would like to arrange for a Free Mortgage Consultation please submit your information by Clicking Here and you will be contacted by the close of the next business day.


Loan Program Advantages Disadvantages

Fixed Rate Mortgages

30 Year Fixed

15 Year Fixed

Monthly payments are fixed over the life of the loan.

Interest rate does not change.

Protected if rates go up.

Can refinance if rates go down.

Higher interest rate.

Higher mortgage payments.

Rate does not drop if interest rates improve.

Adjustable Rate Mortgages (ARM)

1 Year Adjustable

3/1 ARM

7/1 ARM

10/1 ARM


Lower initial monthly payment

Lower payment over a shorter period of time

Rates and payments may go down if rates improve

May qualify for higher loan amounts

More risk.

Payments may change over time.

Potential for high payments if rates go up.

Balloon Mortgages

7 year

5 year

Lower initial monthly payment.

Lower payment over a shorter period of time.

Many balloon mortgages offer the option to convert to a new loan after the initial term.

Risk of rates being higher at the end of the initial fixed period.

Risk of foreclosure if you cannot make balloon payment,  refinance or if you cannot exercise the conversion option.

First Time Buyer Programs

Lower down payment.

Easier to qualify.

Sometimes you may get lower rates.

May be subject to income and property value limitations.

Some programs which have government subsidies may have a recapture tax if you sell the house too early.

Stated Income Programs

Don’t need to verify income.

Faster approval.

Higher rates.

Higher down payment.

No point, No fee Programs

No closing costs.

Less money required to close.

Higher rates.

Higher payments.

Imperfect Credit Programs

Potential for reestablishing credit if you pay your mortgage on time.

When used for debt consolidation, you may be able to reduce your monthly debt payment.

Higher rates.

Terms may not be as favorable.

Harder to get long term fixed loans.

Loans may have prepayment penalties.

Home Equity Line of Credit

You only borrow what you need.

Pay interest only on what you borrow.

Flexible access to funds
Interest may be tax deductible.

Rates can change.

The maximum interest rate is normally high.

Payments can change.

Harder to refinance your first mortgage.

Home Equity Fixed Loan

Fixed payments.

Interest may be tax deductible.

Higher interest rates than on 1st mortgages.

Harder to refinance your first mortgage.