An FHA is a government mortgage loan that is insured by the Federal Housing Administration. These loans typically have more attractive rates for borrowers at a credit score below 700 as well as less stringent requirements. The purpose of the home being purchased must be for it to be owner-occupied. No investment properties! These loans can be used to secure financing on single family homes, town homes, or condominiums. It can be used to secure up to a 4-unit property, in which one unit must be owner-occupied.
FHA loans do require mortgage insurance that lasts for the life of the loan unlike conventional mortgage insurance is cancelled once you reach 22% equity. The terms of this mortgage insurance is not tiered based on credit score, but the monthly mortgage insurance does decrease if you make a down payment of 5% rather than 3.5%. FHA loans allow for a minimum down payment of 3.5% and the loan amount can go all the way up to $625,500.
When purchasing a Condominium using an FHA loan, the requirements are slightly more strict. Be sure the entire condominium development is "FHA Approved" before moving forward with an offer. FHA Approval lookup can be found here, https://entp.hud.gov/idapp/html/condlook.cfm
VA loans are also government loans and are guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). This means if a borrower defaults on their loan, the VA will assist with covering the lender's loss. These loans are offered to those who have served or are serving in the U.S. military and are purchasing or refinancing a primary residence.
VA loans allow for a 0% down payment depending on the purchase price, and often have more favorable interest rates. The minimum down payment requirement will be tied to the amount of VA Eligibility. If you have full eligibility on your VA loan, you can get financing with 0% down up to $636,150 in the DC area. For every dollar you spend above $636,150, you’ll need to put down .25. So for a property priced at $716,150 your down payment is $20,000. Or on a property priced at $1,000,000, your down payment is $90,963.
Rather than Mortgage Insurance, VA loans have a "funding fee", unless the home buyer is exempt due to disability. This funding fee will depend on the type of military member (active vs reserves) and the amount of down payment. It can be paid up front in cash as part of the Veteran's closing costs, or financed into their loan amount. Whether or not this is their first time using their VA eligibility will also have an impact.
Funding fee amounts: https://www.benefits.va.gov/homeloans/documents/docs/funding_fee_table.pdf