We have been members of USAA for over 20 years.  We had always been thrilled with insurance, car loans and the like.  We went to do a home loan with USAA and I discussed over and over our self employment concerns with our processor.  We were pre-qualified, conditionally qualified and I asked for a special review of our tax returns to ensure we did everything right in documenting our income for self employment.  I had every document submitted within a few hours of a request and all of the original documents were submitted the first day of application.      A week ago we were told we simply had to show 3 months of reserve in our personal account - we did - and everything "looked good".  Friday - after still not hearing a final answer - I called a supervisor as my processor was out of the office.  Our processor returned our call and said that now it wasn't "looking good".  I asked if they needed us to pay anything off or move forward on something else - she said it was up to the senior underwriter's final review but that we couldn't do anything more at this point.  Upon original review - I had asked if underwriting sent back "needs" - for example a need to pay off a debt or anything that might assist getting to closing.  We were told yes - we would be directed as to what more we could do if needed - we wouldn't simply be declined.  But according to our processor on Friday we couldn't do anymore.  Supposedly USAA is counting a "loss against" us from 2012 start up of a business that shows as profitable on the 2013 tax returns.  But on the same token won't take lease income from a small bus lease business that we have that has shown on our tax returns for two years. We haven't been able to find out how far we are off and have not been asked any questions other than bank statements nor have we been told if we put more money down we'd be good - all things we are able to do.  Here we are a few days away from our closing date and we don't have a for sure answer but it is looking like a "No".  We have been told we would know something in "48" hours over ten times.  Our credit is in the high 700's, we have proven we have 3 months reserve and more.  We are leaving the sellers hanging - we don't know if we are moving and could very easily end up without a home - due to our lease on our current dwelling.  I don't believe I've ever been so disappointed in an organization nor been taken so far to find out we might be declined and have to start over after paying for inspections and the like.  I'm hoping that by a miracle the senior underwriter might understand small business and where to pigeon hole income on the regluated income sheet.  But as we have seen USAA go down in many areas - including length of time on a claim - we are seriously considering just using local insurance and finance companies from here on out.  I probably bragged about USAA to more people than anyone and now I don't really have much good to say because of the frustration of this experience.  To put this in perspective - one of our employees was able to get a $325,000 loan on his house - we are trying for a $290,000 and we own the company and have higher credit and  a lower debt/ income ratio.   He went through a local mortgage broker who worked with him, we went through USAA - that really sheds a light on our wishing we would have gone through someone we could sit down at their office and discuss in advance.  Our realtor said he's never seen a bank funciton this poorly this far into the game.  If we were going to be turned down it should have been back when we first submitted tax returns and literally begged to have someone look at them to ensure this wouldn't happen in underwriting at the very end.  We got out of the military 15 years ago after my husband served 12 years.  Although there was not really benefits to show after 12 years, it had always seemed as if USAA was a benefit.  But now after two slow claims processes and the mortgage issue - I think we are better off going through local agencies.  If I could make a couple of recommendations to USAA - train the employees in customer service and pay well enough that they care about the plite of its' customers, secondly hire your own underwriting teams - don't outsource and finally, don't let bureaucracy creep in to this extent.  Our realtor assumed USAA must be a federal institution to function like this.  As military we have enough government scuttle - USAA used to help us feel like someone was watching our back - now it just seems to function like an arm of the government with care only for regulation and not the customer.  


I completely understand your complaint. Our bid was accepted on a new house and I thought it would be a perfect time to consolidate my mortgage, bank, and insurance into one company. We were originally told that our closing cost would be about $6000. However, when I received the good faith estimate, it increase to over $10,000. Is USAA that bad at doing initial estimates that the closing costs increase by 2/3 of the originally amount in the course of a day? I am now looking for a new place to get a mortgage and insurance; probably switch banks too. I have bought 3 houses before and none of the companies I used in the past were this bad at estimating costs.


A mortgage specialist should be reaching out to your shortly to talk about your situation and how there could have been such a large discrepancy in the cost expectations. Thank you for posting in the community and please let us know how your closing goes!

Dear Fedoflynn,

First, thank you for your long time membership. I cannot imagine the frustration with the back and forth you have been put through regarding your qualification. I would like to apologize for the stress this has caused you. A mortgage expert should be in touch with your shortly to make sure this is all sorted out. Thank you for posting and please keep us updated.

I am scared now.  I just submitted an application for Mortgage loan, purchased a USAA homeowner policy, have a contract on a home that states a closing date.  We have a $100 per day per diem if we close after that date.  The date is far enough that we SHOULD be able to get everthing done but .... after reading your post - yes, I am worried.  We also have self employment income and have for over 17 years so I really didn't think is would be a problem.  REALLY chewing my nails tonight that all will be done in time.   I have every item already uploaded to USAA and other than a credit inquiry form that is supposed to be in a Fed Ex package they will send out tomorrow, they should have everything else. 

I will not sleep for the next 30 days .....

Hi NC Lady,


I understand your concern.  If I may - I would strongly recommend having your things into another bank just in case.  I had everything uploaded to USAA the first day after we made an offer on our home.  We have been self employed for over 15 years now and have a credit score in high 700's.  We were supposed to close today - on top of all of the above -USAA didn't order our IRS transcripts until last week  so now we are waiting on IRS transcripts before we can even have a closing date.  The cost to us for not closing today is astranomical. Our loan became so volatile and back and forth - the people selling the home won't let us move in early as originally planned (understandably).  Documents were lost that were uploaded and communication is scarce unless I keep pushing.  I called Quicken Loans last week as a back up - they said we could close within 10 days - right now it might honestly be quicker to go with a new company as we are being asked to extend out to the 19th for closing just in case.  This would mean moving right over Christmas even though we started this process mid October with the owners agreeing we could move in over the long weekend of Thanksgiving.    I spoke with several other people and our realtor and they say USAA is a nightmare, the only people we have heard from whom were happy with the USAA mortgage process is a family that has a government job with very easy and clean w2'd income and had a huge down payment as they had just sold a home and were downsizing.  Quicken Loans does more Self Employment and VA loans than anyone according to the gentleman I talked to (who got back to me within an hour of calling).  I fear the USAA processors (who are very ice)  are simply overloaded and then underwriting is out sourced making communication  sketchy.  I'm sorry to add more stress, but I wish I had gone with a back up plan and that might be wise for you all.   I'm still hoping something happens and we can miraculously close this week - my duaghter-in-laws baby shower is this Saturday - and was supposed to be at our new house :( I'm very sad on top of frustrated.    I hate to keep giving a bad review - but this has been the most stressful loan we've ever done - and we've done massive SBA loans in the past - one of the most beurocratic processes ever was a cake walk to this.  I will be beyond thankful if everything goes through at this point, but sitting on pins and needles until then.  

Thank you for all the information.  I will keep Quicken Loans as a backup.  I hate working with multiple companies as each one dings your credit.  When you are Self Employed, those dings can have a nasty lasting effect especially when setting up with new vendors.   Anyway, I am set now to be as proactive as possible and keep your suggested plan as an option.  USAA says 45 days and it seems like that is what it will take.  I am mostly worried to get near done then, as in your case, the brakes get put on. 

I am sorry for your problems and have my fingers crossed that you are able to celebrate at least ONE holiday meal at your new house and very soon.