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A Comprehensive Guide To Mortgages For The Self Employed

Updated: Feb 18

A comprehensive guide to getting a mortgage when you're self-employed

Navigating the world of mortgages can often feel like a labyrinth, particularly for those who are self-employed. The journey towards securing a mortgage can seem more complex due to the intertwining of personal and business finances, necessitating a deeper dive into paperwork such as tax returns and profit & loss statements.


However, with Bennett Capital Partners Mortgage, this process becomes less daunting. We understand the unique challenges faced by self-employed individuals and are dedicated to simplifying the mortgage journey. So, let's start reading and unlock the door to your dream home together.



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Types Of Mortgages For The Self Employed

Types Of Mortgages For Self-Employed Borrowers

Self-employed borrowers have a variety of mortgage options available to them, including conventional mortgages, FHA and VA loans, non-QM mortgages, no ratio, profit and loss-only mortgages, and bank statement loans.



Conventional mortgages are one of the most popular options for self-employed borrowers. This type of loan typically requires proof of income documentation, including personal tax returns or business profit and loss statements, and a good credit score to qualify for a conventional loan.


Generally speaking, Conventional mortgages can offer some advantages over other loan products due to lower interest rates and closing costs. However, it is important to note that these conventional loans require more in-depth paperwork such as verification of self-employment status along with years in business and income sources.


Conventional mortgages require a higher minimum credit score than some other home loan types, but they allow as little as 3% down for first-time homebuyers and also have some of the lowest mortgage rates of any mortgage program type. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgages are the most commonly known types of conventional mortgages. For example, Fannie Mae Condo Mortgages for self-employed borrowers would be considered a conventional mortgage


To learn more about the different types of conventional mortgages click here


➡️ FHA And VA Loans


For self-employed borrowers, FHA and VA loans are great options for obtaining financing. FHA loans provide an easier route to homeownership as they facilitate low down payments with good terms and conditions.


They are also more flexible in regard to lower credit scores and have fewer restrictions on debt-to-income ratios than traditional mortgages. The eligibility requirements typically consist of two years of a steady income and proof that you can afford the loan payments monthly plus other debts or living expenses.


VA loans are available only to veterans who meet certain service criteria but offer exceptional benefits such as no required down payment and high debt to income ratios up to 60% in some cases.



Non-Qualified Mortgages (non-QM) are a type of mortgage loan designed to serve borrowers who don’t fit traditional lending guidelines. These loans can provide self-employed borrowers with the financing they need to purchase or refinance properties, even when they have less paperwork than what is typically required by a bank or other traditional lender. Non QM mortgages are geared for alt documentation mortgages for the self employed.


Non-QM mortgages are also different from traditional mortgages in that income verification requirements may be more flexible, often relying on alternative methods such as bank statement deposits and balance sheets rather than income tax returns.


When it comes to non-QM, mortgage loans for self employed mortgage borrowers, there are several options available depending on individual circumstances and needs including No Ratio My Community Mortgage Programs, Profit and Loss Only home loans, and Bank Statement Mortgage Loans for self-employed borrowers and loans for newly self employed.


A reputable mortgage broker should always be consulted to ensure the right loan program is selected for each unique situation.



No Ratio Community Mortgages are specialized home loans tailored to borrowers who are employed or self-employed and have a hard time documenting their income. Unlike traditional mortgages, which rely heavily on a borrower's debt-to-income ratio as an eligibility measure, these unique loans do not take into account the employed or self-employed borrower's mortgage payments or income ratio when they apply.


While each lender is different, No Ratio Community Mortgages usually require less paperwork from applicants, as there is no need for tax returns or financial statements in the application process.


No employment or income is listed on the loan application, making this part of the process no documentation. The lender does not verify employment or require it to be disclosed on the mortgage loan application. No income documentation is required to be submitted.


The loan qualifies based on the borrower's credit score and down payment funds. Additionally, the borrower must maintain adequate reserves, in addition to funds for the down payment and closing costs. The amount of reserves and down payment required for qualification may vary depending on the borrower's credit history, FICO score and down payment.


Thus it can be much easier for self-employed borrowers to qualify with this type of mortgage loan option compared to conventional mortgages that look closely at income documents such as W2s and 1099s.


If you would like one of the mortgage brokers at Bennett Capital Partners to review your eligibility for this program please call us 1-800-457-9057



Profit and Loss Only (PLO) mortgages are a great option for self-employed borrowers to consider when seeking financing. These loans are different from traditional mortgage programs in that they only require the applicant to submit their Profit and Loss Statement in order to qualify.


Though an attractive option due to its simplified application process, profit and loss only mortgages typically have higher interest rates than standard loans due to the increased risk taken on by lenders which don’t receive as much income verification documentation under this loan type.


Borrowers should compare all loan types available before making a selection so that they have an understanding of all terms, conditions, fees, and potential impacts of their choice.


➡️ DSCR Mortgages


DSCR mortgages are designed to benefit self-employed borrowers or real estate investors who don’t have a consistent flow of qualified income. Also known as debt service coverage ratio loans, they offer real estate investors the ability to purchase investment properties without having their qualifying income verified by a lender.


Lenders use DSCR to determine if the borrower has enough cash flow from the investment property – above what is needed for operational costs and monthly mortgage payments – in order for them to qualify for a loan.


This helps lenders evaluate whether an investor can afford the loan even when self-employment status makes traditional approval difficult or impossible.



Bank statement loans are a type of home loan specially created to help self-employed or contractors qualify for mortgages without providing pay stubs and W-2's from the past two years of employment.


To get approved, self-employed borrowers will still need to document their income, but with bank statements rather than traditional paperwork. Bank statement loans require at least 12 months of consecutive banking statements from one bank account, with only deposits counting towards the program’s requirements.


Withdrawals do not factor into qualification for this kind of mortgage loan. Other eligibility criteria may also be considered such as minimum credit score, average monthly balance in the applicant’s particular accounts, money market balances and other investment accounts, historical financial documents like property tax payments, and previous mortgage payment history that demonstrate satisfactory cash flow over time despite inconsistent income sources throughout the year.



Private lending mortgages are an increasingly popular option for self-employed borrowers looking to purchase a home or refinance their existing mortgage. Private lending mortgages offer flexibility, as they don’t necessarily have the same rigid guidelines as major banks and traditional mortgage lenders require. They offer DSCR, Construction Mortgage, Fix N Flip or Renovation Mortgages, Bridge Loans, Hard Money, and Commercial financing.


With private loans, self-employed applicants can leverage their credit score and cash flow stability along with other factors such as their credit history, of paying off debt, monthly payments on time and how long taxes have been filed in order to qualify for the loan that best meets their needs.


Private lenders look at one's overall financial picture, not just the conventional mortgage DTI (debt-to-income ratio) calculations when approving mortgage loans, allowing potential borrowers with more complex financial histories more opportunities for loan approval compared to other types of mortgages like FHA or VA loans.


They may also require smaller down payments depending on individual circumstances and provide easier access than traditional businesses regarding loan modifications should changes occur in the borrower’s life circumstances or finances during the course of repayment.




Documenting Your Income And Preparing For A Mortgage Application

Documenting Your Income And Preparing For A Mortgage Application

Self-employed borrowers must obtain the necessary paperwork and organize it in order to prepare for a mortgage application.


Gathering And Organizing The Necessary Paperwork


When applying for a mortgage, self-employed individuals need to provide proof of income and document their self-employment. This includes signed and completed federal tax returns for the past two years, bank statements, credit report, letters from current clients, and other documents of taxable income.


A CPA statement can also be submitted in order to demonstrate consistent self-employment. Keeping track of all income and expenses is essential as they will be used when filing taxes at the end of each year or if an audit arises.


It's important that this paperwork is accurate and up-to-date in order to increase your chances of obtaining financing desired by lenders.


Bank Statement Income Calculations For Self-employed Borrowers


For those who are self-employed, the mortgage process of securing a mortgage can be difficult. Many mortgage lenders may not be comfortable with the unpredictable monthly income that is frequently associated with owning your own business.


Fortunately, bank statement mortgage programs exist to help bridge this gap and give self-employed applicants greater access to financing opportunities.


Bank statement loans allow self-employed borrowers to verify their gross monthly income using documented deposits instead of tax forms such as a W2 or 1099s. During the underwriting process, lenders carefully review personal and business bank statements over an extended period (typically twelve months but sometimes 24 months) in order to determine an applicant’s average monthly income that they will use when evaluating the borrower’s financial situation for loan approval eligibility.


This approach removes many of the obstacles faced by entrepreneurs whose incomes fluctuate month-to-month or year-to-year due to seasonal businesses changes, growth phases, etc., allowing them to rely on recent business bank statements and bank transaction records representative of their typical earnings patterns rather than several years' worth of tax returns which could potentially no longer reflect their current financial status accurately.


While it does require additional verifications and calculations from the lender, using documented deposits from business checking accounts often provides applicants with more options. This is particularly beneficial for those who have a high debt-to-income ratio but possess ample liquid capital reserves in other investments or assets, which can be used for down payments.


Additionally, it offers more flexibility when shopping around for loans, as these types of programs are now widely available at most major lenders. This is a significant change from a few years ago, when such programs were mostly restricted to smaller, specialized nonbank and online-only lenders, which often offered fewer terms and benefits compared to the more comprehensive options available at larger, full-featured retail outlets today


Verifying Self Employment Income


Self-employment income, business expenses, and business tax returns and records require special attention when applying for a mortgage. Lenders will ask to review self-employed borrowers' financial documents, including taxpayer's return, business income & expense statements, 1099s, or other types of proof of payment received from clients.


On the tax returns, lenders look out for any fluctuations in taxable income or net profits over the past two years., as this could lead to questions about the stability of earnings. It is important for self-employed applicants to show that their self employment income status is stable by providing continuous and consistent proof such as occupancy with prior residency history if applicable.


In order to expect lenders to verify employment status as a self-employed person or employed individual, paperwork such as bank transfers from employers' paychecks or W2s should also be provided where necessary, If a large loan sum has been requested to make sure everything goes smoothly during the verification process it is best practice to contact the loan officer at your lender well before submitting an application so they can check which documents are needed upfront.


A mortgage professional at Bennett Capital Partners is experienced in calculating bank statement deposit income and verifying self-employment. Please call one of our representatives and they can walk you through the pre-approval process 1-800-457-9057



Conclusion

Conclusion

In order for self-employed borrowers to obtain a mortgage, the most important step is to gather the necessary documentation and paperwork. This includes income documents such as bank statements, tax returns, profit and loss statements, business registration papers, property taxes, credit reports, etc., that prove your financial stability. If you a


It’s also important to ensure your credit score is in good shape before making an application; improving it can help you get better terms on a loan or more favorable interest rates.


Lowering the debt-to-income ratio can make personal savings and also greatly assist with successfully obtaining a mortgage when self-employed.


Borrowers should also become familiar with various types of mortgages available – traditional mortgages through FHA loans right up to nonconforming and private lending products – as well as discuss options with experienced professionals like those found at Bennett Capital Partners Mortgage Brokerage. At Bennett Capital Partners, we specialize in providing individuals with mortgage options tailored to their unique needs, including those who are recently self-employed. Our experienced professionals are dedicated to helping borrowers secure a recently self-employed mortgage and achieve their homeownership goals.







FAQ's Mortgages Loans for Self Employed Borrowers

FAQ's Mortgages Loans for Self Employed Borrowers

What are some of the unique challenges that self-employed individuals face when trying to get a mortgage?

Self-employed individuals often struggle to provide proof of stable income, which can make it more difficult to get approved for a mortgage. Additionally, mortgage lenders often may require more documentation from self-employed borrowers than they do from traditional W-2 employees.


How can self-employed borrowers improve their chances of getting approved for a mortgage?


Self-employed borrowers can improve their chances of getting approved for a mortgage by having a strong credit score, saving up for a larger down payment, keeping accurate and organized financial records, and working with a lender who has experience working with self-employed borrowers.


What documentation will self-employed borrowers need to provide when applying for a mortgage?


Self-employed borrowers will typically need to provide at least two years of tax returns, as well as bank statements and other financial documents that show a stable income and a credit history, and track record of successful business operations.


Are there special mortgage programs available for self-employed borrowers?


Yes, there are several mortgage programs specifically designed for self-employed borrowers, including bank statement loans, low-doc loans, and non-conforming loans. Working with a lender who specializes in these types of mortgages can help self-employed borrowers find the best loan for their needs.


What should self-employed borrowers look for in a mortgage lender?


When looking for a mortgage lender, self-employed borrowers should look for a lender who has experience working with self-employed borrowers, offers competitive interest rates, has a streamlined application process, and is willing to work with borrowers to find the best loan for their unique financial situation.


 
Philip Bennett

Philip Bennett


Philip is the owner and Licensed Mortgage Broker at Bennett Capital Partners. He earned his degree in Accounting and Finance from Binghamton University and holds a Master's Degree in Finance from NOVA Southeastern University. With more than 20 years of experience, Philip has been a leader in the mortgage industry. He has personally originated over $2 billion in residential and commercial mortgages.


Learn more about Philip Bennett's background and experience on our Founder's page. Whether you're a first-time homebuyer or a seasoned real estate investor, our team is here to help you achieve your real estate goals. Don't wait any longer, contact us today and let us help you find the right mortgage for your needs.


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