Home > Underwriting > Underwriting Guide, summaries and more

Underwriting Guide, summaries and more...

Our guides provide you with the Underwriting Requirements — the definitions, methods, calculations, documentation and other requirements — we use to determine whether a loan is eligible for MGIC mortgage insurance.

MGIC Underwriting Guide

Our Underwriting Guide (UWG) provides the policy, procedures and requirements we use to evaluate loans for mortgage insurance. On a case-by-case basis, we will consider insuring loans that don’t meet requirements stated in our Guide.

We’ve organized our Guide as follows:

  • Section 1 – All Loans provides requirements for doing business with MGIC
  • Section 2 – MGIC Go! Loans focuses on loans with a valid DU Approve or Loan Product Advisor Accept response
  • Section 3 – Standard Loans covers loans that are not processed through an Agency AUS or that do not qualify for MGIC Go!

See our complete Underwriting Guide, last updated 03/01/18, or use the index below to access a specific section.

Section 1 – All Loans

   1.01 Doing Business with MGIC

        1.01.01 Where We Conduct Business

        1.01.02 Our Fair Underwriting Commitment

        1.01.03 Submission Options for Ordering MI

        1.01.04 Incomplete Applications

        1.01.05 Approved Applications and Insurance Activation

        1.01.06 Denied Applications

        1.01.07 Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA)

        1.01.08 Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)

        1.01.09 Identity Theft Procedures

   1.02 Eligibility Criteria

   1.03 Borrowers

        1.03.01 Inter Vivos Revocable Trusts

        1.03.02 Nonpermanent Resident Alien

        1.03.03 Permanent Resident Alien

        1.03.04 Borrower Exposure

        1.03.05 Borrower Claim History


   1.05 Condominium and Cooperative Project Exposure

   1.06 Underwriting Programs

        1.06.01 Delegated MI Underwrite Program

        1.06.02 MGIC MI Underwrite Program

        1.06.03 MGIC MI Underwrite/Full-Doc Review Program with ATR Check

   1.07 Gold Cert Coverage

        1.07.01 36-Month Coverage

        1.07.02 12-Payment Protection

Section 2 – MGIC Go! Loans

   2.01 Loan Underwriting to Agency AUS Requirements

   2.02 MGIC Go! Programs

        2.02.01 National - MGIC Go! Overlays

        2.02.02 Housing Finance Agency (HFA) - MGIC Go! Overlays

        2.02.03 Puerto Rico - MGIC Go! Overlays for a DU Approve/Eligible or Loan Product Advisor Accept/Eligible Response

        2.02.04 - Guam MGIC Go! Overlays

2.03 Credit

        2.03.01 Credit Score

        2.03.02 Borrower Indicator Score

        2.03.03 Representative Credit Score

Section 3 – Standard Loans

   3.01 Loans With an Agency AUS Response

   3.02 Underwriting Summaries

        3.02.01 National Underwriting Summaries

        3.02.02 Housing Finance Agency (HFA) - Primary Residence

        3.02.03 Guam - Primary Residence

        3.02.04 - Puerto Rico Underwriting Summaries

        3.02.05 - HARP and Non-HARP Refi-to-Mod (RTM) Program Requirements

3.03 Loan Purpose

        3.03.01 Purchase Loan

        3.03.02 Rate/Term Refinance

        3.03.03 Cash-Out Refinance

        3.03.04 Other Loan Purposes

3.04 Loan Types and Terms

        3.04.01 Fixed-Rate Mortage (FRM)

        3.04.02 Adjustable-Rate Mortgage (ARM)

        3.04.03 Balloon Mortgage

        3.04.04 Buydown (Temporary or Permanent)

        3.04.05 Ineligible Loan Types

   3.05 Occupancy

        3.05.01 Primary Residence

        3.05.02 Second Home

        3.05.03 Investment Property

   3.06 Documentation Age

   3.07 Debt-to-Income (DTI) Ratio

        3.07.01 Total Monthly Obligation

        3.07.02 Total Monthly Gross Income

   3.08 Income and Employment

        3.08.01 Employment Income

        3.08.02 Self-Employed Income

        3.08.03 Other Income

        3.08.04 Rental Income

   3.09 Assets

        3.09.01 Funds to Close

        3.09.02 Reserves

        3.09.03 Borrower Contribution

        3.09.04 Source of Funds

        3.09.05 Ineligible Sources of Funds

   3.10 Credit

        3.10.01 Credit Report

        3.10.02 Credit Score

        3.10.03 Traditional Credit

        3.10.04 Nontraditional Credit

        3.10.05 Adverse Credit

        3.10.06 Re-Established Credit

        3.10.07 No Credit

3.11 Liabilities and Debts

        3.11.01 Alimony/Child Support/Family Support

        3.11.02 Contingent Liability/Assignment of Debt/Assumption

        3.11.03 Debt Paid by Business

        3.11.04 Installment Debt

        3.11.05 Job-Related Expenses

        3.11.06 Lease Payments

        3.11.07 Loans Secured by Financial Assets

        3.11.08 Open/Monthly Accounts

        3.11.09 Other Real Estate Owned

        3.11.10 Pooled Savings Contributions/Individual Development Account (IDA)

        3.11.11 Revolving Credit/Line of Credit/Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC)

3.12 Property

        3.12.01 Markets

        3.12.02 Appraised Value

        3.12.03 Appraisal Review

        3.12.04 Property Types

        3.12.05 Title Considerations

        3.12.06 Compliance with Law

Underwriting Summaries

The following summaries highlight our most common loan programs. They do not replace our Underwriting Guide, which contains definitions and full details.

MGIC Go! (03/01/18)

National (03/01/18)

Housing Finance Agencies (HFAs) (03/01/18)

Community Lending Summary (12/27/17)

Guam, includes Go! (03/01/18)

Puerto Rico – English, includes Go! (06/04/18)

Puerto Rico – Spanish, includes Go! (06/04/18)

Additional underwriting resources

Construction-permanent loans – Excerpted from our Underwriting Guide, this piece explains your options for handling construction-permanent financing. Refer to our Guide for full details.

Special Market Underwriting Guide – We continuously monitor market conditions nationwide. At any given time, individual market conditions may require special consideration that expands or limits Underwriting Requirements we publish in our Underwriting Guide. We publish these special requirements in this guide. A loan secured in a “Special Market” is subject to these Underwriting Requirements. Special Market Underwriting Requirements are subject to change.

Condominiums and co-ops – We base project eligibility on a number of factors, including our exposure and loan performance in each project. Project eligibility is subject to change. See our Condominium Project Eligibility Checklist for Standard Loans for additional information.

FHFA conforming loan limits – The Federal Housing Finance Agency restricts Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to purchasing single-family mortgages with origination balances below a specific amount, known as the “conforming loan limit.” This FHFA web page provides those limits by county.