Does Sponsoring an Immigrant Affect Buying a House?

If you’re a U.S. citizen or green card holder sponsoring a family member for a green card, you might wonder how it affects your home purchase.

Sponsoring means signing a binding affidavit and committing to assist financially if needed.

Does this impact your mortgage eligibility or make the immigrant count as your dependent for creditors?

How long will this obligation last?

Does Sponsoring an Immigrant Affect Buying a House?
Does Sponsoring an Immigrant Affect Buying a House? | photo courtesy | Bing

 

In this article, we will answer these questions and more, based on the information available from reliable sources.

What is an Affidavit of Support?

Affidavit of support (Form I-864) proves your ability to aid an immigrant’s green card process.

It prevents public charge issues, a potential denial factor.

This form also binds you to repay the government for means-tested benefits like:

  1. food stamps
  2. Medicaid
  3. SSI

How Does Sponsoring an Immigrant Affect Your Ability to Buy a House?

Sponsoring an immigrant won’t impact mortgage eligibility directly.

However, it may affect debt-to-income ratio, a key factor for loan approval.

Honest disclosure is crucial. A credit score is also vital, influenced by payment history, credit usage, history length, and types.

Failing to repay public benefits or support can harm your score.

Regularly check and dispute any errors in your credit report due to sponsorship.

How Long Does Your Sponsorship Obligation Last?

Your sponsorship obligation lasts until one of the following events occurs:

  • The immigrant becomes a U.S. citizen.
  • The immigrant has worked 40 qualifying quarters (10 years) in the U.S.
  • The immigrant dies.
  • The immigrant permanently leaves the U.S.
  • You die.

You cannot terminate your sponsorship obligation by divorcing the immigrant or withdrawing your affidavit of support.

However, if you divorce the immigrant, you may be able to modify or reduce your spousal support or alimony payments based on your sponsorship obligations.

READ ALSO: Can an Illegal Immigrant Fly Within the U.S. 2022?

Conclusion

Sponsoring an immigrant for a green card is a significant commitment with potential financial implications.

It doesn’t automatically hinder your ability to get a mortgage or own a home.

Know your rights and responsibilities, plan for possible scenarios, and consult an immigration attorney and a financial advisor before proceeding.

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