Last month, St. Louis mortgage prospects who own their own businesses got a shot of welcome news: a long-overdue innovation that should streamline their application process. For those who’ve been frustrated in the past after applying for St. Louis mortgages, it signals the introduction of a process more similar to what typical wage earners experience.
You don’t have to tell anyone who runs their own small business that undergoing any kind of financial review is bound to result in reams of paperwork. If their bookkeeping hasn’t been updated recently (often the case when financial reporting is only completed at the end of the fiscal year), it can be maddeningly costly and time-consuming.
It isn’t that banks and financial institutions enjoy putting the self-employed through the wringer—it’s just a fact of life that income verification is much more difficult when the paymaster is also the employee. Now Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac—the two largest sources of mortgage cash —have introduced automated systems to process the applications of self-employed much more efficiently. The promise is bold: to “reduce the cost of processing from days to hours.”
This isn’t just some esoteric back-office paper-shuffling detail. According to Fannie Mae’s SEL 2018-09 Bulletin, their new “Loan Product Advisor®” software, introduced last month, will enable automated income assessment for self-employed borrowers. Its workings are predictably complex—but the thumbnail summary is that it uses the applicant’s more readily available tax return data to establish asset and income levels. As a practical matter, when Fannie and Freddy make life easier for their lender clients, the lenders should find it more cost effective to court those borrowers affected—in this case, business owners seeking St. Louis mortgages will be among them.
If you are one of the local small business owners who’s been discouraged by bouts with previous versions of the mortgage application machinery, this could be a true game-changer. Especially now, with St. Louis mortgage rates still pegged at historically low levels, this could be the moment when it’s possible to make the move to the kind of St. Louis home you’ve had to put off in the past. Call me! 636.329.4100