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Can You Get a Mortgage With an E-2 Visa?

Posted on May 30, 2022
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By Heather Beliles, M. Ed.

If you are an E-2 visa holder, you may be asking "Can You Get a Mortgage With an E-2 Visa?"

The answer is Yes, absolutely!

E-2 investors currently residing in the United States are able to get a loan for the purposes of purchasing a home. There will be some additional information needed, but overall, the process is the same for E-2 visa holders and U.S. citizens alike.

Generally speaking, here are the steps for obtaining a mortgage for an E-2 investor:

  1. Have a credit score of at least 620
  2. Talk to a couple mortgage lenders and choose one to work with
  3. Select a preferred loan type
  4. Apply for the loan
  5. Work with the lender in getting pre-qualified
  6. Receive the pre-approval letter from the lender

Unlike the larger, more recognizable banks such as Wells Fargo, Chase and Bank of America who do not typically loan to E-2 investors, the somewhat smaller-scale lenders oftentimes do. While the above steps highlight the process of getting a home loan, they do not encapsulate the process of buying a home.

Home loan consultants keep the E-2 borrower’s debt-to-income ratio as a foundation when determining their maximum approval for a home loan.

Purchasing a Home With a Mortgage, as an E-2 Visa Holder

Obtaining a home loan frees up capital the E-2 investor may otherwise have. He or she can utilize this option and pay monthly mortgage payments over the course of the loan.

The first step to obtaining a home loan would be to speak with a mortgage lender regarding which loan products would best fit the borrower’s needs. Real estate professionals usually have preferred lenders based on experience in working with them, and can recommend one they truly believe would be a great fit for the buyer. Especially knowing those lenders do in fact work with E-2 visa holders. Once a connection is made with a mortgage consultant, he or she will discuss the loan types with the buyer, including Conventional, VA, FHA, and USDA loans. After the buyer gains a better understanding of the loan types, he or she will be better equipped to decide which one will truly work best.

The next step would be for the E-2 investor to apply for the home loan, which is part of the pre-approval stage. It is at this point where the E-2 visa holder will decide which one would achieve the best outcome for them. After moving past the pre-qualification stage, so long as they truly qualify, he or she will receive a pre-approval letter from the lender, stating the maximum amount the buyer can borrow for a home. Of course it is now time to go shopping for a home, and at the end of about 4-6 weeks, finally close the escrow account on the new home.

To speak with an immigration attorney who has experience in working with foreign nationals who are, or who are looking to become an E-2 investor in the United States, contact our office today.

Credit Concerns

The minimum credit score for an E-2 investor to get a home loan in the United States is a 620.

If the applicant has a credit score that does not satisfy this requirement, their loan consultant will be able to assist the applicant in improving their credit score. If the loan consultant does not have a process dedicated to this, he or she can recommend a specialist who assists individuals looking to improve their credit score. Once the credit is at the desired rating, the applicant will work with the lender for the remainder of the process.

Other Considerations

It is imperative the borrower refrains from making any changes financially until after they officially purchase the home from the seller. Certain factors are scrutinized by the mortgage 

lenders and their underwriting team.

  • Do not change jobs
  • Do not make large purchases, 
  • Do not gift money, as this too decreases the borrower’s assets
  • Do not get a loan for a new vehicle
  • Do not buy appliances or other furnishings for the new home
  • Do not open any new lines of credit

Do:

  • Ensure the credit score is at least 620
  • Be transparent about finances
  • Be timely when responding to requests from the lender
  • Wait to open lines of credit, make large purchases, or otherwise gift any money
  • Remember a lot of the success of the loan process falls on the borrower – not just the lender

Conclusion of Can You Get a Mortgage With an E-2 Visa?

While many mortgage lenders across the United States offer loan packages to foreign nationals who have an E-2 visa, larger banks like Bank of America, Wells Fargo and Chase do not. The mortgage process for securing a home loan is largely the same as it is for U.S. citizens.

Home loans are obtained through a process which includes proving a satisfactory debt-to-income ratio and a sufficient credit rating to the mortgage company, applying for and getting pre-approved for the loan, receiving a pre-qualification from the lender, and then gaining an official underwritten status on their loan application.

Real estate professionals usually have long-standing relationships with many lenders, therefore they can recommend a couple of lenders to the E-2 visa holder, who can be of assistance to them as an E-2 borrower.

Frequently Asked Questions About Can You Get a Mortgage With an E-2 Visa?

What is the minimum credit score in order for an E-2 investor to qualify for a home loan in the United States?

So long as the E-2 investor in fact does have a credit score in the United States, the minimum score is 620.

Can an E-2 investor qualify for a VA loan?

The requirements are the same for E-2 visa holders and U.S. citizens alike, for all loan types. However, if an E-2 investor qualifies for a VA loan, he or she will not technically need an E2 visa any more. 

What is the average range of interest rates and down payment requirements for E-2 individuals?

Not every applicant is the same. As there are so many different factors taken into account, it would depend on the E-2 visa holder’s personal situation.

Do I have to submit additional copies of my E-2 source of funding for my business – in order to get a loan?

No, as this has already done on the immigration law side, lenders do not request E-2 business sources of funds. 

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