With financial counseling from Naca, my fico score has improved from 670 or so to 723 in about 5 months. Our assigned counselor helped us with practical strategies to put together a budget, calculate our money flow each month, and ultimately determine how much of a home we'd be able to afford.
Naca is a program that provides loans to 'everyday joes' with imperfect credit after lengthy counseling and planning. Getting a loan through the program won't be fast, but it's definitely worth it. If you're in a major city, there's likely a Naca office nearby (https://www.naca.com/offices/officeMap.jsp).
With $0 down and no closing costs, my wife and I are going to be closing on a home in the next few weeks. Our rate for a 30 year fixed mortgage was locked-in at 4.25% after buying down 5 points (the Naca rate as of this morning was 5.5%). This is for a 350K loan! There is no PMI... There are maximum limits that you can borrow....
Realistically, you won't get approved right away. They take time making sure you're prepared to buy a home before you get approved. They make sure you're actively putting money into savings and such to prepare for purchasing a new home. It's certainly not as fast as getting a mortgage through another company, but the pros far outweigh the cons. Additionally, loans are not through mom and pop vendors, but very reputable companies. Check out the website and tell me what you think.
Feel free to send me a message and I'd be glad to tell you more about the program. It is for people who do not currently own a home - you don't necessarily have to be a first time homebuyer. There's no "income requirement", though they do of course verify your employment and check your credit. Their goal is to stave off predatory lending.... they also do re-financing of predatory loans.
That's great that your received a blessing and then passed it on for others to look into getting the same opportunity. He's not lying when he says they are backed by reputable lenders - Bank of America and CitiFinancial (I think?).