If you are wondering about the documentation aspect of the home loan process, this page is for you! On this page of the Complete Beginner's Guide to Home Buying, you will discover what may be required of you to document your income, debts and more.
You will also see some excellent tools and resources on this page to help you through the digitizing process of submitting documentation.
Below, you will find a button that will take you to a printout version that you can use to physically check off items as you gather your documentation. The printout doesn't include everything you may need but it is an excellent start!
Income Documentation for the W2 / Salary / Hourly Worker
Income documentation for traditional W2'd employees including hourly, salary or similar fixed income employment will be a bit easier to document compared to the self-employed borrower.
- 30 days paystubs from all employers.
- 2 years W-2s for all jobs worked.
- Employer verification with company name, supervisor name, address(es) and telephone number(s) of all borrower's employers for two years.
- Annual award letters: Social security, disability, pension, etc.
- Alimony / child support income* (elective / optional).
- Proof of any other reoccurring monthly income.
Note: If you rely on child support income and wish to use this income as part of your qualification, you will need to provide a copy of the court order showing the child support award along with 6 months bank statements, canceled checks or deposit slips to show that payments are regularly made.
Note About Employment History: Employment history does not necessarily need to be 2 years without lapses in employment or with the same employer. Simply provide 24 months of employment history skipping months where you received unemployment, elected for an extended break, studied abroad, etc.
Rental income? If you want to utilize your rental income for qualification, we will need two years tax returns, all schedules. Additional documentation will be required for every property you own regardless of using the income as qualifying income. Please ask me for details.
Income Documentation for the Self Employed
Am I Self-Employed? If you own 25% or more of any business that you are using as qualified income, most loan program guidelines consider you a self-employed borrower.
The majority of loan programs require an average or your profit income over a two-year period based on your taxes. Dramatic changes in year-over-year income may require a Letter of Explanation and additional documentation.
- 2 years business tax returns including all schedules and K-1s.
- 2 years personal tax returns including all schedules and K-1s.
- An audited P&L reporting business revenue, expenses and net income -or-
- An unaudited YTD P&L signed by the borrower reporting business revenue, expenses, and net income and 3 months business depository account statements.
- Your business will need to be documented as open, operating and producing revenue. Example: CPA letter about the health of business.
Profit and Loss (P&Ls) should be no older than 60 days of your home closing date and should be current to your most recent submitted bank statements for verification.
Note: This is not intended to be an all-inclusive list as each borrower and loan scenario is unique. Additional documentation may be requested such as 1099-INT for interest income, 1099-DIV for dividend income, 1099-B for capital gains from brokerage accounts and much more.
Most loan programs require your most recent 2 months bank statements but there are instances where you may need to provide 3-12+ months bank statements depending on the income being verified or the loan type.
Most commonly, the following asset documentation is required:
- 2 months bank statements, all pages including blank pages.
- 2 months or a quarterly retirement / investment account statements.
- Gift funds verification and gift letter if using gift funds for cash to close.
Additional circumstantial information about you may be requested. Besides state or federally issued ID and SSN, the remaining items shown may or may not apply to you as a borrower.
These and additional other information may be requested during your mortgage journey:
- Social security number for all borrowers.
- State-issued photo ID such as a driver's license or federally-issued passport.
- Divorce or separation information when using child support or alimony as qualifying income for your loan application. A copy of the divorce decree or maintenance agreement along with any amendments to these agreements.
- School transcripts or diploma if you don't have a full 2 years employment history.
- Gift letter for gift funds. If you elect to use Scott Buehler as your loan officer, an easy-to-fill template will be provided.
- Derogatory credit explanations that appear on your report.
- Homeowner's insurance, property tax statement and flood insurance declarations for any properties you own or co-own.
- Bankruptcy discharge documentation.
Documentation Tools and Resources
Hopefully this page gave you a good idea of the documentation that may be requested during your mortgage application.
The fastest way to provide your documentation is to complete your loan application. From there, at any time, click the "Loan Portal" link on the top of any page on this website then log in with your email and password you've entered during your application.
The Loan Portal provides you an easy and bank-secured way to upload your loan documentation. Additional secure methods are available upon request.
"I Don't Own a Scanner"
The easiest way is to meet me at my local office in St George, Utah. If you are nearby, please give me a call to set up an office appointment. From there, I will take your large stack of documentation and scan them direct into your loan.
If you are too far away from my office, please visit my Tools to Digitize My Loan Documentation guide which is an amazing resource to help walk you through digitizing your documents.
Once your documents are digitized, please log in to the loan portal to upload or ask for my other secure transferring methods.
Avoiding Heavy Stress for a Smooth Home Loan: Part of my process as your Senior Mortgage Consultant is to guide you along the process. I will periodically update your Loan Portal, text and email you with doc request updates. Be sure to log in and check it regularly throughout the mortgage process.
I've found through all of my loans that it is better to request as much documentation earlier along the mortgage process. This will help result in a smoother, less stressful and happier loan experience for you.
That being said, over-documentation is a real issue as well. For instance, if you apply on the 20th of the month and go under contract with a home fairly quickly, it's better to send a single month bank statements and a paystub now and send the next month's statement and stubs when they come available.
Please help avoid loan delays and stress by promptly providing your documentation when requested.