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  • Writer's pictureNathan Zarcaro

Amerant Mortgage Physician Loan: What Makes it Unique?

Updated: Dec 20, 2023


Key Insights:


  • Amerant Mortgage's physician loan is available to doctors, dentists, oral surgeons, podiatrists, veterinarians, and lawyers.


  • Some physicians may qualify for 100% financing (up to 97% for lawyers).


  • The program is best for those buying second/vacation houses.


Amerant Mortgage physician loan

Eligible States

​AK, CO, CT, DC, FL, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MN, MS, MO, MT, NV, NH, NJ, NC, OH, OK, PA, PR, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA.

Minimum Credit Score

​720

Qualifying Degrees

​MD, DO, DPM, DDS, DMD, DVM, JD

Financing Options

​Vary by degree and state


Amerant Mortgage physician loan program


Amerant Bank, headquartered in Coral Gables, Florida, is the largest community bank in Florida and a subsidiary of Amerant Bancorp Inc. With 23 branches split between Florida and Texas, the bank offers a variety of checking, savings, and loan options.


Amerant also offers physician loans to qualifying physicians and lawyers all over the country.



Eligibility


To be eligible, you'll need to buy in one of the following states: AK, CO, CT, DC, FL, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MN, MS, MO, MT, NV, NH, NJ, NC, OH, OK, PA, PR, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA.


To qualify for an Amerant mortgage, you will need to be:


  • A physician or podiatrist (MD, DO, DPM)

  • A dentist or oral surgeon (DDS, DMD)

  • A veterinarian (DVM)

  • An attorney (JD)


Additionally, as is the case with most physician lenders, residents may participate up to 90 days before their employment start date, with a valid offer letter or employment contract.



Financing guidelines


Amerant’s financing options vary by location and career type. For example, physicians may receive:


  • 100% financing up to $750,000

  • 95% financing up to $1.25 million

  • 90% financing up to $2 million


Attorneys don't have a 0% down payment option available to them, but they may finance 97% of their home purchase up to $950,000.


Finally, program applicants in Texas and Florida have slightly different financing guidelines:


  • 100% financing up to $1 million

  • 95% financing up to $1.5 million

  • 90% financing up to $2 million


No matter which level of financing you qualify for, you will not need to pay PMI.



Pros and cons to Amerant physician mortgages


Here are the best and worst parts of the program.



Pros


1. Borrowers with high student debt qualify


Amerant Mortgage uses flexible underwriting criteria to help doctors with high levels of student loan debt qualify for a mortgage. Furthermore, your student loan payments will be excluded from your debt-to-income ratio calculation if they have been in deferment for at least one year as of on the date of your loan application.


If buying a home as a resident or fellow, you'll probably need to use future income to qualify. In this case, your student loans will be considered, though you may still be accepted.



2. Both fixed and adjustable-rate options


Home buyers may also choose from a selection of fixed and adjustable-rate loan options. This is unusual for physician loans, which normally have few, or even one term option(s).


While the exact term options offered are not advertised, you can reach out to an Amerant Mortgage loan officer for more details.



3. Available to more professions


Instead of the typical physician loan which is open to physicians (MDs and DOs), Amerant Mortgage offers expanded eligibility to podiatrists, veterinarians, and lawyers.



Cons


1. High credit score requirements


The program has a high 720 credit score requirement, which means that certain professionals may not qualify. Those with a past track record of consumer debt may be rejected, but there are other options for those with lower credit scores:




2. Exclusion of NY and CA buyers


Though the program is available in 35 states across the country, it is unfortunate that buyers in California and New York, two of the nation's most populous states, are excluded from eligibility.


This will not impact those in qualifying states, of course, but it would be nice to see buyers in some of the country's biggest (and most expensive) metro areas have the opportunity to participate.



Applying for an Amerant mortgage


Once you decide that an Amerant physician loan is right for you, simply follow these three steps.



1. Connect with a loan officer


Begin by connecting directly with Amerant to be paired with a loan officer. Once in contact, he or she will begin to build your profile. You'll be asked for personal and contact information and may also be asked about the home you're purchasing.


Prepare to provide:


  • Contact information: Name, email, phone number, current address

  • Home information: Purchase price, expected down payment, property location, and address



2. Submit your application and required paperwork


After collecting the required information, the loan officer will provide you with a link to the mortgage application. Some of the information you've already provided may already be populated, but you'll also need to upload or provide lots of financial information, like:


  • 2 or more recent paystubs, if already practicing

  • 1-2 years of tax return, if already practicing

  • Bank and investment account statements

  • Verification of your degree and employment (or offer letter)



3. Get approved


Once you submit your application, you'll wait for notice of acceptance or rejection. If approved, Amerant will provide you with loan estimates, disclosures, and a contract to sign.


These documents will contain information about your loan's interest rate and estimated closing costs.



Who should take an Amerant mortgage?


There are a couple of unique aspects to Amerant physician loan program that are not commonly found in the industry. With this in mind, the program typically works best for:



1. Those buying a second property


One of the most interesting parts of Amerant's physician loan program is that participants may use it to buy a secondary property. Virtually all other physician loan programs on the market are geared towards helping doctors to buy their primary residence that they will live in full time.


Combined with Amerant's high credit score requirement of 720, this program is best suited for slightly older physicians and lawyers with more cash savings. Since borrowers have 10 years to participate after completing their education, it is common to use the Amerant program to buy a vacation home.



2. Those with good credit


Of course, plenty of younger doctors and lawyers have good or great credit scores, regardless of their student loan situation.


Depending on interest rate conditions, buyers may qualify for slightly lower rates than they would with other physician mortgage lenders. There is no guarantee, of course, but higher credit scores can lead to superior financing rates.



Conclusion


Amerant Mortgage is a solid option for physicians and lawyers to consider when buying a new home. Though they don't offer anything substantially different from other physician lenders, opening up eligibility for second homes make the program a good fit for slightly more experienced doctors.



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About Nathan Zarcaro

Nathan Zarcaro is the founder of The Student Debt Destroyer and is passionate about personal finance related causes.  A 2018 graduate of Providence College's Liberal Arts Honors Program, Nathan studied Finance, and has worked for industry leaders in both finance and healthcare.  In his free time, Nathan enjoys playing golf and traveling with his wife Brigid.

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