STEP 2: USDA Mortgage Income Guidelines

USDA Income Requirements are determined by County

To qualify for the USDA Guaranteed Mortgage Program you need enough income to qualify and show that you can afford the payment. This is pretty obvious as this same basic guideline applies to any type of loan. In addition, however, the USDA says that if you make too much money you can not use their No Down Payment Program. The USDA has imposed maximum household income limits in each of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties. There is some variation in the maximum income requirements depending on the County as the USDA maximum income calculation is based on County census data. To go directly to your County to explore your options, visit the USDA Eligible Counties section in the navigation menu at the top of each page.

Maximum USDA Income Depends on size of your Household

The USDA also has two income levels depending on the number of people who will be living in the home. These levels are calculated based on households with 1 to 4 members and then also households with 5 or more members. It is important to note that the income of ALL household members is used to determine if an application meets the maximum income requirements even if not every member of the household will actually be on the new Mortgage. This means that people who will be living in the home but will not be on the mortgage application will still have their income counted towards USDA household income calculation. A minor who works part time or a spouse who has income but shaky credit will have their income used in the USDA household income calculation.

Pennsylvania USDA Mortgage Maximum Annual Household Income

Even if your income exceeds the figures here, you may still qualify. The USDA allows for several deductions which may allow your Household Income to fit within their Maximum Adjusted Income Guidelines.

Deductions to reduce your USDA Household Income Calculation

  • $480 from the annual total for each minor child living in the household

  • $480 from the annual total for each student living in the household who is not on the mortgage application

  • $400 from the annual total for each disabled household member who is not on the mortgage application

  • Documented Child Care Expenses for household members under the age of 13

  • Documented Medical/Disability Expenses for household members age 62 or older (this deduction is allowable if the expense exceeds 3% of the household income)


Key Points: USDA Income Requirements

  • USDA has targeted this program for middle class families

  • Income needs to be enough to qualify but not too much

  • Income received by ALL household members is calculated

  • Income level varies by County