USDA Loan Requirements

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) loans, like FHA loans, are popular among first-time home buyers. These loans are sometimes called “Rural Development Loans” and are only available in rural areas; however, 97% of the U.S. classifies as “rural” under this loan program. The USDA sets minimum income limits for these loans: $75,650 for households of one to four members and $99,850 for families with five to eight members. Income ceilings vary by county.

Unlike FHA loans, there is no federal guideline limiting the maximum loan size, although maximum loan amounts may be set by the county.

Maximum loan amounts for area counties:

  • Collin County        $172,300
  • Dallas County        $157,000
  • Denton County      $167,600
  • Tarrant County      $161,700

USDA loans require a FICO score of 620 for qualification. The USDA typically requires a debt-to-income ratio under 41%, unless you have a FICO score over 660, stable employment, or substantial savings.

Like VA loans, there is no minimum down payment. Up to 6% of closing costs can be rolled into the loan amount. USDA borrowers often get better-than-average interest rates because the USDA discounts their rates. Adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) are not available with USDA loans; all loans are fixed rate loans. Borrowers will pay Mortgage Insurance guaranteed by the USDA for the life of the loan, protecting the lender from loss if the borrower defaults.

More Loan Types


FHA/HUD loans are one of the easiest mortgage loans to qualify for, making them popular for both first-time home buyers and repeat buyers.

Conventional Loans

Conventional loans are often the best option for home buyers with a good credit score and the ability to make larger down payments.

VA Loans

VA loans are available to eligible U.S. military veterans, active duty service members, National Guard, Reservists, and surviving spouses.

Jumbo Loans

Jumbo loans are used for mortgage loans over $424,100. A strong FICO score, generally 680 or better, is required to qualify for a jumbo loan.

Find the Right Loan for You

There are many types of loans available and understanding mortgage options can be complicated. Whether you’re a first time home buyer, looking to refinance, self-employed, military veteran, or public servant- The Tuttle Group is here to help. We’re experienced in working with people who have unique loan situations and we will help you figure out the loan program best for you.


If you’re ready to start the process or starting to think about a new home loan, fill out our quick form to get started. We’ll help answer any questions and let you know what to expect. If you’re ready to get started, we’ll do that too. Just fill out our quick form and we’ll be in touch soon.

Resources & Tools

We’ve compiled a variety of resources to help borrowers of all types make sense of the process. And when you’re ready to get started, our team is here to help.

Mortgage Loan Requirements - The Tuttle Group

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