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How To Get An FHA If You Are Self-Employed

Successful self-employed individuals demonstrate perseverance and resolve in running profitable ventures. They excel at devising innovative solutions to obstacles. While securing an FHA loan may not be a typical business challenge, it can pose a hurdle for self-employed individuals aspiring to own homes.

Acquiring an FHA loan while self-employed is achievable. Although the criteria may be more stringent than those for traditional employees, business owners are eligible for FHA loans. This comprehensive guide aims to assist self-employed individuals in preparing for their FHA loan application.

Is it Possible to Secure an FHA Loan When You’re Self-Employed?

Self-employed individuals can qualify for Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans, as well as mortgages in general. While the standards may pose more challenges due to the complexities of managing one’s own business, being self-employed should not impede one’s ability to secure a mortgage.

Lenders impose specific requirements on self-employed applicants seeking FHA loans. These include owning a minimum of 25% of the business, maintaining a favorable debt-to-income ratio, and furnishing adequate financial documentation to demonstrate eligibility.

Qualifying for an FHA loan while being self-employed

To qualify, you need to meet specific financial criteria, provide proof of your business, and fulfill other documentation requirements. Here are the specifics on FHA guidelines for self-employed individuals.


Self-employed individuals seeking an FHA loan must satisfy specific financial criteria, including:

  • Minimum credit score requirement of 500
  • Minimum down payment requirement of 3.5%
  • No instances of bankruptcy within the past 2 years.
  • Earning a substantial income from a business where you have a minimum ownership stake of 25%.
  • Before business-related debt shows up on your credit report, ensure your business possesses a financial strategy to tackle the debt effectively.

Proof Of Business

To qualify for an FHA loan, your lender needs to confirm that your business has been active for a minimum of two years and falls under one of these categories: sole proprietorship, limited liability corporation, partnership, or corporation. Each lender may have unique requirements to validate the legitimacy of your business. Depending on your lender, you might be asked to provide your business license, verified commercial address, membership in a relevant industry organization, or business insurance.

Other Documentation

Self-employed individuals need to submit specific documents to be eligible for an FHA loan. Generally, your lender will ask for 

  • Last 2 years Tax Returns (all pages and schedules)
  • Current Year Profit and Loss (P&L) Statement
  • Personal and Business Bank Statements

Guidance on Securing an FHA Loan When Self-Employed

To ensure you’re fully prepared for your FHA loan application, meticulously gather the required documentation by following these steps.

  1. Assess your credit score and history. Tackle any outstanding debts and ensure timely credit payments. Consider postponing applications for a few months to enhance your creditworthiness and secure a lower interest rate. Also, be cautious about using personal funds for business expenses, as it could negatively impact your credit. Maintain a clear boundary between your business and personal finances, whether for new equipment purchases or maintenance costs. By having your business cover all work-related expenses, you can enhance your personal financial position.
  2. Increase your down payment to reduce monthly costs, making your mortgage more manageable. A lower monthly payment decreases the income necessary to qualify for an FHA loan.
  3. Reduce your debt-to-income ratio (DTI). FHA guidelines are more lenient than conventional loans, allowing DTIs up to 57%. While FHA approves high DTIs, managing your DTI can enhance your financial well-being and strengthen your mortgage application.
  4. Gather evidence of your self-employment track record. Remember, you must provide evidence demonstrating ownership of a minimum of 25% in a thriving business with a tenure of at least 2 years. Hence, it is vital to furnish documentation indicating your business establishment date. Ideally, you should present a history that showcases your diligence as a resourceful entrepreneur who diligently nurtured a successful business.
  5. Compare options. FHA loans are supported by the federal government but issued by commercial lenders, leading to varying rates and fees. It’s prudent to collect data from multiple lenders and select the one aligning with your financial situation.

Key Takeaways

Self-employment presents challenges, yet it doesn’t disqualify you from obtaining an FHA mortgage loan. When you apply, precision in submitting the required documentation is crucial. Demonstrating the financial well-being of both yourself and your business is paramount. Moreover, you must own at least 25% of a business that has operated for a minimum of 2 years.

If you’re self-employed and aiming to finance your home purchase with an FHA loan, kick off the approval process today.

Picture of Reed Letson

Reed Letson

Reed offers two decades of expertise as a mortgage broker, focusing on veterans and first-time home buyers. With a strong grasp of real estate and mortgage markets, he empowers clients with practical insights. Reed's passion is guiding clients to build wealth through real estate investments and financing solutions.

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