We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a No Documentation Mortgage?

Tricia Christensen
By
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A no documentation mortgage is a loan for a residence or vacation home that requires little in the way of proof of income from the borrower. These loans may also be called no income/no asset verification loans or NINA mortgages, and they have some appeal to people who cannot prove income sources, but who have strong credit ratings. They can also be disadvantageous financially, since loans may be offered at several points below prime and can be more costly. Borrowers who can provide documentation on income are advised to stick to loans that are less expensive over the long run, and there are a few intermediary or low documentation loans that might be a good alternative.

There is no argument that a no documentation mortgage is the easiest to apply for. People simply provide their social security number so their credit can be evaluated. A lender can’t even assess debt versus income ratio, so a very high and desirable credit score is just about the only way to obtain a NINA mortgage. Downpayment size may also influence a lender’s decision to offer one of these loans. If downpayment is very large, the likelihood of getting a NINA increases.

Many wonder why anyone would want a higher priced loan if he or she has any means of verifying income. There are actually several reasons why a no documentation mortgage can be attractive. First, there are people who make money in ways that isn’t documented, such as by working under the table, working on tips, or by getting paid in non-traditional and perhaps, occasionally criminal ways. These people literally can’t prove their income and could possibly owe huge amounts in back taxes which raises suspicions about their work activities. It should be firmly stated that many people who make income legally and pay taxes have a hard time verifying earnings and might search for a NINA loan.

Alternately, the no documentation mortgage can be useful for those who need to guard their privacy. Celebrities, for example, might see this as a good option. They don’t have to give information about income, work activities, etc., when applying for loans. Other people simply hate paperwork or want the most expedient means of getting a loan, and with excellent credit, they might be able to use this method of borrowing.

There are several types of loans called low documentation, where borrowers might give more information about their finances, though still not as much as is needed on a full-documentation application. More information could include statements of present income, submitted yearly, or lists of debts or assets. Borrowers still pay for the privilege of providing less information, and this might cost a quarter to half a point below prime, to two or three points, depending on how much information is provided. From a financial prospective only, the low or no documentation mortgage is not sound, but the extra cost may be worth it for people with special circumstances and strong credit scores.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a WiseGeek contributor, Tricia...
Learn more
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.