Struggling to obtain HELOC

3 Replies

I am looking to take out a line of credit on a property valued at $140,000. I owe less than $80,000 and should be able to obtain a HELOC for just around $40,000. The issue is that I have been working for a private real estate investor being paid in cash and have no legitimate proof of income. Therefore the bank would not grant me the line of credit as they see no way for me to pay it off despite never missing a payment or having a late payment on the property.

I'm now searching for any and all options to somehow make this loan possible. Any feedback is greatly appreciated!

If you want to be able to tap traditional financing sources on single family properties, you must have provable income. Until you have a couple of years of tax returns showing you paid taxes on that cash income, you are locked out of most typical financing.

@Donald Anthony I could not tell if you were seeking this on your primary home or an investment property.  If it's your primary home, then plenty of lenders will offer HELOCs but you will be very hard pressed to find a product without income.  If it's an investment property, it will be harder to find a LENDER but if you do they won't be so stringent on the income.  Now, just as some quick references most that offer a Line of Credit will limit it to around 75% of the value if it's a single family home....so maybe a Line of Credit of $20k is all that you should expect. 

Now, a local lender will be your HIGHEST probability of success when trying to find "Line of Credit" lenders on investment properties. The unfortunate thing here is that investment properties foreclose at a higher rate than primary homes so many banks just don't want the exposure to this. But it is 100% possible to find but you have to put in the time or at least know someone that ALREADY has the connection. Here's my 3 suggestions:

  1. Post in the Bigger Pockets STATE forum that you are looking in. There are usually some good, local investors that monitor those forums. Maybe they already have a suggestion or recommendation for you? Certainly try there.
  2. Visit your local REI groups. There are many groups that meet across the country. Some post here on Bigger Pockets. Many post on meetup.com. Networking is always a great practice and you never know who you might meet there and what good information they have to share. Would certainly recommend visiting if one is close to you.
  3. Calling - and then there's this option. Which is what I had to do. I had to call about 200 lenders (no exaggeration) to learn of 4 lenders who did this and I have some tips. First, when calling banks target the smallest most community based banks you can first. If you have never heard of them, and they have one location - that's a good candidate. No big, national, publicly traded banks will do this loan type. Second, try to ask for "LINES OF CREDIT" instead of "HELOC". I know it sounds like I'm splitting hairs but some banks write HELOCs in their residential department....which won't write Investment Properties. And that residential department will often not speak to the commercial department. So they'll just say "sorry, we don't do it"....not even knowing that they really do! So if you ask for a "line of credit on an investment property" that should get you to the COMMERCIAL division. That's the section of the bank we want. Now, most of these smaller banks may only have 12 employees or so. So don't get frustrated if they don't return your call or aren't in the office. Just call back and be friendly. Maybe play dumb a little "I don't know if I'm in the right place..." "I'm sorry to disturb you, you may not be the right person for this....", etc. Maybe someone can get you to the right person. Again, be prepared to call A LOT.

Anyway, hope these ideas help in some way.

Originally posted by @Donald Anthony :

I am looking to take out a line of credit on a property valued at $140,000. I owe less than $80,000 and should be able to obtain a HELOC for just around $40,000. The issue is that I have been working for a private real estate investor being paid in cash and have no legitimate proof of income. Therefore the bank would not grant me the line of credit as they see no way for me to pay it off despite never missing a payment or having a late payment on the property.

I'm now searching for any and all options to somehow make this loan possible. Any feedback is greatly appreciated!

There are still regional banks doing stated income HELOCs in my area. Might be true in your area as well. Only way to find out is to dial for dollars.