Buying a house is more than choosing the perfect property and signing on the dotted line. It’s a complex transaction of personal and financial assessments, and as part of the process, borrowers typically provide their Social Security number (SSN).
Lenders use this to verify a borrower’s identity and access their credit report—but not everyone has this number.
If you’re someone who doesn’t have a Social Security number, you might think that homeownership is out of reach. However, there’s a way to make your dream of owning a reality. Rather than getting a traditional loan, you can apply for an ITIN loan and use an Individual Tax Identification number (ITIN) to qualify.
What is an ITIN?
A SSN is issued by the Social Security Administration (SSA) to citizens, permanent residents and certain non-immigrants who are authorized to work in the U.S.
On the other hand, an ITIN is a number issued by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to individuals who are required to file a U.S. tax return—but not eligible for a Social Security number. This includes non-resident aliens, foreign nationals and their spouses and dependent children. An ITIN acts as a form of identification for individuals who are not eligible for SSNs.
To obtain an ITIN, you’ll need to fill out the IRS Form W-7 Application for Individual Taxpayer Identification Number and attach a federal tax return (electronic returns are not allowed without an ITIN).
You’ll also need to provide proof of foreign status and proof of identity with your application. Acceptable documents include a passport, driver’s license, birth certificate or other government-issued identification.
Once you’ve completed your application and gathered the necessary documentation, you can either mail it to the IRS or apply in-person at an IRS office. While processing times can vary, you can typically expect to receive your ITIN within seven weeks.
What is an ITIN loan?
You can apply for an ITIN loan if you have an ITIN number instead of a SSN. The loan process is similar to the process of getting a traditional mortgage, so you must complete a loan application and meet the income and credit requirements. The main difference is that you’re using an ITIN to apply for the loan.
FirstBank Mortgage is proud to offer ITIN loans as part of our loan options. Basic requirements for getting an ITIN loan include:
Proof of valid identification (a drivers license, passport, ITIN, etc.)
No Visa required
Proof of income and employment (12 months of income documentation)
Two years of tax returns
A good credit score and history (debt-to-income ratio up to 55%)
Minimum 20% down payment (gift funds allowed)
Cash-out refinance available up to 75% with a minimum 640 credit score (not available in TX)
Most property types eligible for financing
If you’re not a U.S citizen, don’t assume that you’re ineligible for a mortgage loan. Even though the home loan process is slightly different, you have options.
Working with a lender that offers ITIN loans can help you achieve the goal of homeownership. To learn more about this program, contact one of the loan experts at FirstBank Mortgage to start your application. Our loan experts can provide guidance and help you navigate the loan process with confidence.