Buying a home can be challenging for anyone, including physicians that’s why Citizens Bank designed a Mortgage specifically for physicians.
With flexible terms, reduced fees, and the ability to qualify for a higher loan amount, this specialized mortgage helps doctors nationwide achieve the dream of home ownership, even early in their careers.
Keep reading to learn more about this valuable offering and see if it suits your needs.
What Is a Physician Mortgage?
So what exactly is a physician mortgage? It’s a special home loan created specifically for doctors and physicians.
These mortgages are designed to accommodate the unique circumstances of those in the medical field.
As a physician, your income is typically higher and more stable, allowing you to be labeled as a good risk and qualify for larger loans.
Physician mortgages typically have more flexible underwriting guidelines that take into account factors like:
- Your massive student loan debt. Lenders understand you have a negative net worth right now due to the cost of med school, so they’ll allow for a higher debt-to-income ratio.
- Your delayed income. It may take 3-7 years of residency and fellowship before you start earning the big bucks, so lenders will consider your future earning potential.
- Your unpredictable schedules. Being a doctor often means long, irregular hours, so lenders provide more leeway when reviewing your work history and income documentation.
The benefits of a physician mortgage are huge. You’ll likely qualify for a larger mortgage amount and be able to buy your dream home sooner.
You may get lower interest rates and down payment requirements. Some lenders even offer special programs for residents and fellows.
Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage
Doctors can borrow up to $1 million to finance their homes with Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage.
You’ll only need a minimum down payment of 5% – much less than the typical 20% required for conventional mortgages.
Even better, Citizens Bank won’t charge private mortgage insurance (PMI), which can save you hundreds per month.
Citizens Bank understands that Doctors have a complex income structure with your base pay, bonuses, and other compensation as a doctor.
They will consider your full income potential when determining how much you can borrow, not just your base salary. This can allow you to qualify for a higher mortgage amount.
Deferred student loans with a more than one-year deferral period are not included in Citizens Bank physician home loans’ debt-to-income (DTI) ratio calculation.
Additionally, Citizens Bank allows applicants to use Income-Based Repayment (IBR) plans and reduced student loan payments to qualify for the physician home loan program.
This provides flexibility for borrowers with lower incomes due to their student loan obligations.
Rates on the Physician Mortgage are competitive, and you’ll have the choice of a fixed-rate or adjustable-rate mortgage.
Loan Amounts and Terms Available
Citizens Bank offers competitive physician mortgage loan amounts and terms for doctors.
As a doctor, you have a lot of options to consider with this program.
Citizens Bank physician mortgages come in a range of loan amounts to suit your needs, whether buying your first home or upgrading to a larger one. You can borrow between $250,000 to $2 million.
Down payments start at just 5% of the purchase price for loan-to-value ratios up to 95%. Have a larger down payment? You’ll get an even better interest rate.
Physician mortgages from Citizens Bank come with flexible terms from 10 to 30 years.
A shorter term, like 10 or 15 years, will allow you to pay the loan off faster and save on interest charges. However, the trade-off is higher monthly payments.
A longer 25- or 30-year term means lower payments but higher interest paid over the life of the loan.
It depends on your financial goals and how long you intend to stay in the home.
Fixed and Adjustable Rates
You can choose between fixed or adjustable interest rates. A fixed-rate physician mortgage has an interest rate that remains the same for the entire loan term, providing predictability.
An adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) has an interest rate that changes periodically based on the market rate.
ARMs typically start with an initial fixed-rate period of 3, 5, 7 or 10 years before rates adjust.
While adjustable rates are often lower initially, fixed rates provide more long-term stability.
Eligibility Requirements for Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage
To qualify for the Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage, there are a few requirements you’ll need to meet.
The qualifying degrees for the Citizens Bank physician mortgage program include the following:
- MD: Medical Doctor
- DO: Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine
- DDS: Doctor of Dental Surgery
- DMD: Doctor of Dental Medicine
Citizens Bank allows medical residents with a new license to apply for a mortgage within 60 days of commencing new employment.
Also, self-employed doctors will need at least two years of experience to qualify for the loan. The least is ten years of completed residency.
Down Payment and Income Requirements
You’ll need at least a 3% down payment for this physician-focused mortgage. Citizens Bank looks at your income from the last two years of tax returns to determine how much you can borrow.
You’ll need a minimum credit score 620 to qualify for this mortgage. The higher your score, the lower your interest rate.
Check your credit report for errors before applying, and take steps to improve your score if needed.
Your debt-to-income ratio (DTI) compares your monthly debt payments to your monthly income.
Citizens Bank allows a higher DTI for the Physician Mortgage, typically up to 50%, since physicians often have higher student loan debt.
Your DTI must be reasonable for your income level, but this flexibility is helpful.
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In addition to the standard mortgage application documents (pay stubs, tax returns, bank statements), you’ll also need to provide:
- Medical school diploma
- Residency program completion certificate
- Proof of board certification (if applicable)
- Current medical license
States, where Citizens Bank physician home loans are available include
- District of Columbia,
- North Carolina,
- New Hampshire,
- New Jersey,
- New York,
- Rhode Island,
- South Carolina,
- Washington, and
- West Virginia.
Pros of Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage
Advantages of the Citizens Bank physician mortgage loan include:
1. Competitive Rates and Terms
Citizens Bank offers very competitive interest rates and loan terms for physician mortgages.
The Citizens Bank physician loan allows borrowers to choose between fixed-interest rates or adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs).
You’ll find options for fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages with terms of 10 to 30 years.
This variety of choices allows borrowers to select what suits their financial situation best and provides a clearer understanding of the total loan cost.
2. Flexible Qualifying Options
As a doctor, you have a unique financial profile that can be complicated to evaluate for a mortgage.
Citizens Bank provides flexible qualifying options to make it easier for physicians to obtain a home loan.
They understand medical school debt and offer ways to offset it in their underwriting calculations.
They also account for signing bonuses, yearly income increases, and the potential for side income from consulting and teaching.
3. Flexibility in Property Usage
The Citizens Bank physician loan allows the financing of various properties, including primary residences, construction projects, and cash-out refinances.
Borrowers can use the loan to purchase a new primary home, build a new property, or obtain cash through refinancing.
4. No Requirement for Mortgage Insurance
Saving up for a substantial down payment to avoid private mortgage insurance (PMI) can be time-consuming.
However, with the Citizens Bank physician loan, there is no mandatory mortgage insurance requirement.
This eliminates the additional cost of PMI, providing relief for borrowers who have saved a smaller down payment.
5. Additional Perks
Some additional benefits of a Citizens Bank physician mortgage include:
- Rate lock periods of up to 12 months so you can lock in a low rate even before starting your job, and
- Free preapprovals to shop confidently for a new home.
They also provide dedicated mortgage bankers to guide you through the loan process, from application to closing.
Cons of Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage
Before applying for a Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage, borrowers must consider certain limitations when evaluating the suitability of the loan for their circumstances.
Some downsides of the Citizens Bank physician mortgage loan include the following:
1. Limited Eligibility by Profession
While some doctor mortgage programs have expanded their eligibility criteria to include various types of doctors, such as optometrists and veterinarians, the Citizens Bank physician loan is exclusively for medical doctors and dentists.
This narrower eligibility scope may restrict the number of healthcare professionals qualifying for this loan program.
Additionally, eligibility is limited to those within ten years of residency completion.
2. No 0% Down Payment Option
Some physician mortgage loan programs offer the benefit of obtaining financing with zero down payment, which can appeal to doctors with limited initial capital.
However, Citizens Bank does not provide this option and requires a down payment of at least 5% to qualify for financing.
3. Potential State-Specific Restrictions
Citizens Bank operates in multiple states, but the loan programs and restrictions may vary from state to state.
Borrowers must check the eligibility criteria specific to their state of residence and ensure compliance with any additional requirements imposed by the bank.
How to Apply for Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage
Applying for the Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage is simple. As a doctor, you’re in a great position to qualify for this loan program.
Here are the steps to get started:
Gather Your Documents
To apply, you’ll need to provide income verification and other documentation. This includes:
- Your two most recent pay stubs to show your income
- Your last two years of tax returns (including W-2s)
- Your medical board certification or license
Check Your Credit Score
Ensure there are no errors on your credit report by obtaining free copies from AnnualCreditReport.com.
Your credit score will determine your interest rate, so check that it’s in a good range. Scores of 700 and above will qualify you for the best rates.
Complete the Application
You can apply for the Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage on their website or by phone.
The application will ask for your income, employment, down payment amount, and the property you want to purchase.
Provide Supporting Documents
Upload or send in the documents gathered in Step 1 to verify your information. The bank may request additional paperwork to substantiate your application fully.
Once your application and documents have been reviewed, you’ll receive a pre-approval letter stating the loan amount you qualify for.
This helps in your home search by showing sellers you’re serious.
Find Your Dream Home and Get an Appraisal
Work with your real estate agent to find a home in your price range. When you accept an offer, the bank will order an appraisal to confirm the property value before finalizing your mortgage.
Sign Final Paperwork
You’ll review and sign your final mortgage paperwork if everything checks out.
Congratulations, the home is yours! Enjoy this next chapter of homeownership.
If you’re a doctor looking to buy a home, the Citizens Bank Physician Mortgage deserves your consideration.
With competitive rates, flexible terms, and benefits tailored to physicians, this mortgage offers many advantages over a standard mortgage.
The low down payment, cash-back options, and student loan forgiveness can help make home ownership more affordable and accessible up your budget.
And with their specialized underwriting process, you won’t have to deal with the hassle of explaining your medical degree or residency to a traditional lender.
Whether you’re looking to buy your first home as a resident or upgrade to a larger property as an attending physician, they have an affordable mortgage solution.
Talk to a Citizens Bank mortgage specialist for more details and get started.