Immigrant Lending: An Odd Discussion With A Banker

Immigrant Statue of Liberty“Mike, I’d like to refer you a typical immigrant client who doesn’t have a social security number and runs a ‘cash business’ – and I think you know what I mean”.

“No, actually, I don’t know what you mean.  Does their business generate a lot of cash earnings that they do not report to the IRS?”

“Well, I didn’t say that – but okay”.

“Sorry, I can’t help you – I don’t risk my reputation by recommending that my capital sources conduct business with someone who illegally evades taxes.  Moreover, I think it’s offensive to imply that immigrants typically operate cash businesses to evade taxes”.

“Well then what exactly do mortgage brokers do?”

Before quickly ending my conversation with the banker (for obvious reasons), I indicated that I would be happy to work with self-employed people who legally minimize their taxes with legitimate expense deductions.  Also, I would be happy to source mortgages for those who have not yet become U.S. citizens, do not have U.S. permanent residency, or even have not yet qualified for a social security number.

Surprised?!

As long as a “foreign national” or non-U.S. citizen can evidence an adequate two-year foreign or domestic credit history, there are capital sources who will gladly underwrite their mortgage.  In fact, it is a preferred business platform because statistics prove that these borrowers work hard to repay their debts – and tend to have solid liquidity and reserves.  One key issue is that all required documents written in a foreign language need professional translation.

Here’s the Point: Not having a social security number or green card doesn’t mean you can’t qualify for a mortgage – but you must be properly reporting your income.
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