Are you interested in buying a home but don’t have the money saved for a down payment?  Purchasing a home may actually be more affordable than renting and financing is available with no down payment in rural communities through USDA Rural Development housing programs.

Eligibility is subject to income limits that do not exceed 115% of the median household income of the property’s county.  The Guaranteed loan program provides homeownership loans through approved lenders and a list is available at  The interest rate is negotiated between the lender and applicant and is currently below 4.50%.  The low fixed rates and terms allow for affordable payments.  For example, a $100,000 loan at 4.25% would have a monthly principal and interest payment of approximately $492 plus taxes and insurance.

Eligibility is based on income, acceptable credit, repayment ability and a property located in rural areas. Nebraska State Director Maxine Moul, said, “Home ownership should be an achievable dream and in many cases, USDA housing programs provide the only way for rural residents to buy a home.”

Revisions to the USDA Guarantee Rural Housing (GRH) program guidelines were effective March 9, 2016 to allow additional families to qualify for home ownership. With changes, applicants who have credit scores of 640 or greater, at least two established trade lines on the credit report, and a 12 month payment history will typically be considered as having acceptable credit history.  However, applicants who do not meet this credit threshold may still be eligible by establishing acceptable alternative credit history with rent verification and at least one additional trade reference that is reoccurring (i.e. utility payments, insurance, phone, etc) or three trade reference if rent is not available.

All communities in Nebraska are eligible for housing programs with the exceptions of Fremont, Grand Island, Hastings, Kearney, Lincoln, North Platte, Omaha and South Sioux City/Dakota City.  

The Agency also has Direct loan program available to households that are below 80% of the median household income for the county.  For example, the income limit for the Direct loan program for most counties in Nebraska for a one person household is $34,150, up to $56,600 for a six person household.  However, higher income limits may be applicable in some counties.  These loans are made directly through USDA Rural Development offices and the current interest rate is 3.25% and may be reduced to 1% for qualifying households.   For a $100,000 loan at 3.25%, monthly principal and interest payments would be $413 plus taxes and insurance, and if the household qualifies for additional subsidy at 1%, principal and interest payments could be further reduced to $297 per month for a $100,000 home.


USDA offers Homeownership Opportunities with No Down Payment is available in the following areas/cities

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