To have a credit score, you need to have taken out some loan before or had a credit card. If you have not done either of these things, you will not have a credit score at all. In that situation, you can still purchase a home; you just are going to need to do things a little differently.
Tip #1: Consider an FHA Mortgage
If you don't have a credit score, you may want to consider an FHA mortgage. An FHA mortgage is willing to work with people who have no credit score or who have very low credit scores. Instead of focusing on your credit score, they are going to be looking at your employment, your income as documented via your personal tax returns, your savings and cash reserves, and your assets.
You will need to show that you are financially responsible in other ways outside of a credit score. With an FHA loan, you are going to be able to put down a much smaller down payment as well. Your exact down payment will be determined by how the FHA judges your creditworthiness. An FHA loan is designed to allow lower-income individuals an opportunity to purchase a home with less strenuous down payment and financial history requirements.
Tip #2: Consider a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac Loan
You could also consider a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loan. Both loan programs approve borrowers who don't have a credit score. Instead, you are going to need to show a 12-month history of making on-time rent payments. You will need to make a larger down payment than an FHA loan but not as large as a conventional loan. They may also ask to see bills that you have paid over twelve months as well.
With a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loan with no credit score, the loan will have to be manually underwritten, which means that someone will have to manually review all your information and approve you for a loan instead of using a computerized underwriting system. Not all lenders that service these types of loans will manually underwrite a loan for someone without any credit history. You have to find a lender who is willing to work with someone without a credit history.
Tip #3: Consider a VA Loan
If you are a veteran or current military member or a surviving spouse of either and are eligible for a Veteran's Administration loan, that is another viable option. A VA loan doesn't require you to have a credit file.
With a VA loan, the lender will review your entire loan profile. That means that you will need to provide information and proof of on-time rent and utility payments. They may also ask to see on-time payments for other things as well, such as your phone bill. Once again, you have to find a lender willing to work with someone with a non-traditional credit history.
Reach out to a professional for more information on no-credit financing options.