Buying A First Home With Mom Could Be A Bad Idea

by Alyce
(Windsor, North Carolina, USA)

Ask Kate if buying a first home with mom could be a bad idea: I want to buy a house for myself with my son as my co-borrower because I can't qualify at the present time, no income.

Alyce continues... My son is eligible for VA financing because he is a partially disabled veteran and wants to eventually buy his own house.

If he becomes my co-borrower, will that prevent him from buying a house for himself, using his VA home loan eligibility?

Kate Answers: Buying A First Home With Mom Could Be A Bad Idea

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Dear Alyce,

Is your son's income substantial enough to qualify for two mortgages?

If your son co-borrows with you to bolster your income so you can buy a house, he is just as responsible to the mortgage company as you for your monthly house payments.

So when the time comes to buy his own home, he should prepare himself for a worst case scenario - to be asked to qualify for his house payment and 100 percent of yours, even if you pay the entire amount.

Buying A First Home And Qualifying For Two Mortgages

If this concerns the two of you, even in the slightest, do more than bite your fingernails. Find the most reliable VA approved mortgage lender in town and make an appointment to discuss the scenario.

To get an adequate answer, expect to supply W2s, bank statements, pay stubs and a copy of his credit report. The more information your son provides, the more dependable the outcome.

VA Mortgage Guidelines For Buying A House

Let's say the VA approved mortgage lender gives your son a thumb's up. He thinks your son is capable of carrying your mortgage payment and his own VA home loan.

Both you and your son should keep in mind this is not a guarantee. That's because lending guidelines can turn on a dime. So I have two cautions for your son...
  1. It is possible if you co-borrow with your mother, buying a first home for yourself could be harder. You might not qualify at all unless your mom would refinance her mortgage or sell her home.

  2. If for any reason your mom's monthly house payments turned unaffordable for her, you would be on the hook for them. In the case of late payments, your credit history could be adversely affected.

Buying A House With Family Members

Alyce, I hope you understand in light of these cautions that I am not downplaying family members buying a house together. I have four daughters and we practice helping each other in our family.

So I applaud your son's effort to help his mother! And I think you are a good mom to ask this question before your son commits to your mortgage.

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