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First-time Homebuyer

Here to Guide You Home

Trusted Solutions

Our mortgage experts have guided generations of families to homeownership. When you choose Civista Bank, you’ll find seasoned lenders, connected to your community and equipped with the knowledge and experience to answer your questions every step of the way.

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Get Your First-Time Homebuyer’s Guide

There are a lot of parts involved when it comes to buying your first home. Enter your information below for free tips and resources with your journey to homeownership.

Looking for Help with Your Down Payment?

Choosing your first home is exciting and one of the largest purchases you’ll ever make. Wow! That sounds intimidating, but no worries. Not when you are working with your local Civista Bank.

Low Down Payment Programs

Frequently Asked Questions

Fixed Rate Loans offer the stability of a fixed payment amount throughout the term of the loan.  Fixed rates may be right for you if you plan to be in this home for a longer period of time or want to know the payment through the life of the loan.

Adjustable Rate Mortgages (ARMs) can change the interest rate of the loan up or down with market rates.  The timing of the adjustment period is established at the time of the loan.  Caps are placed on adjustments to protect borrowers from extreme changes.  An ARM may be right for you if you are looking for a lower payment initially or plan to stay in the home for a shorter period of time.

The amount of money you’ll need to put down depends on the price of the home and mortgage program you choose.  Some loan programs allow little to no down payment, however, other restrictions may apply or mortgage insurance may be required that will add to your monthly payment amount.   

Mortgage insurance helps homebuyers pay less for their down payment while protecting lenders from loss if a homeowner can’t repay the loan.  With conventional mortgages this is called Private Mortgage Insurance or PMI and traditionally is required for loans with less than 20% down. 

An escrow account allows the bank to pay the ongoing homeowner’s insurance and taxes on your property for you. As part of your monthly mortgage payment, you pay a portion of your taxes and insurance premiums. Then, when taxes and insurance premiums are due, we’ll make the payments on your behalf with the money in your escrow account.

Closing costs are costs incurred with purchasing a home and are paid at the closing of the real estate transactions.  These costs include items like loan origination fees to the bank, appraisal fees for assessing the value of the home, title policies and recording fees.  Your lender will itemize and review closing costs with you so you know what to expect.

The bank will consider your income, how much debt you have, any assets you already own and your credit history when determining the amount you can afford.  Contact our lending team for a free preapproval to know what price range you should consider when shopping for a home.

What to Expect with Civista


We offer a large selection of mortgage programs with a variety of down payment options. More importantly, you’ll have someone to personally help you choose the best program for you. Learn more about our mortgage programs.


Someone to explain the advantages and disadvantages of each mortgage option. Fixed or adjustable rate? How long you plan to stay in the home may help determine which option is better for you.


We’ll keep you updated throughout each stage of the loan.


Your satisfaction is our top priority, and we are honored when you refer family, friends, neighbors and coworkers to us.

Meet Our Mortgage Team

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