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Certified translations in the housing industry

Certified translations in the housing industry

When banking goes personal: Certified translations are frequently required when procuring a home mortgage. Here’s what to do. 

Photo by Breno Assis on Unsplash 

Don’t let the language barrier get in the way of your dream home. Or in the way of your dreams, full stop.  

Bank statements, amongst other legal paperwork, need translating. Be it securing a home mortgage, applying for immigration permits, or university applications. English (at least in the US) is the only way. Do you want to go for your very own home? Finally, get to replay your favorite movie scene where someone screams “get off of my lawn!”? 

When banking goes personal, and tedious translations meddle with your hopes and aspirations, we can help out. If you are a non-permanent resident, specific documents are what prove how you intend to live in the United States under the established legal frame.  

Here are the typical papers you’ll need, why they are required, and how it can be solved.  

TO START, WHAT IS A BANK STATEMENT 

A bank statement is a monthly document issued by your financial institution. In it, you can see a summary of the revenue and spending activity associated with that specific bank account. All of the transactions of the month are compiled in one form. 

WHY IS IT USEFUL 

Simple as this document may be, it can be used, and most time is required, for filing: 

  • Taxes 
  • Loans 
  • Mortgages 
  • Visa applications 
  • Rent 

And so on. Asides from being your number one source when it comes to personal finance and keeping track of where your money is going. Banks, both here and internationally, will often require bank statements as proof of an individual’s history and will need to see these in a language they can understand. 

DO I NEED A PROFESSIONAL?  

Yes, unlike any other personal document, you can’t translate your bank statement by yourself. When applying for mortgage, loans, or any of the above, a certification of the document and certification letter will be demanded. And that is a certificate only a professional translator can provide. 

Why? Well, it makes sense. Countries don’t automatically recognize the authenticity of a given legal document if it’s from abroad. To be safe and avoid any bumps on the road, an official translation will be needed.  

What’s more, ideally the translator will be familiarized with the financial industry, laws, and so on to avoid any misinterpretations. The language may be Greek, but finance should not be Greek to them.   

Most of these documents are also time-sensitive, which means the translation has to be performed within strict deadlines and properly. 

THE IMPORTANCE OF TRANSLATION WHEN IT COMES TO REAL ESTATE  

The US property market is relatively inexpensive, with a wide range of homes on offer. But, as aforementioned, it has its challenges. A home loan can be hard to get if you are a foreigner, but it happens every day. Even overseas mortgages are sanctioned if applicants meet income, age, visa, and other criteria. Having a good credit history in your home country also helps quite a bit. 

IS A TRANSLATED BANK STATEMENT ALL I NEED? 

Well, formally maybe. But if you want to do things like a pro, we’d recommend a few extra efforts that are well worth it considering you’re striving for the place you want to spend every day in.  

Negotiating 

If you are not completely at ease when it comes to negotiating, a property broker should do it on your behalf. But if you’d like to be a part of that conversation, and you don’t feel at ease speaking English, then go for an interpreter. You can schedule one in a matter of minutes if it’s online, or schedule for a face-to-face meeting.  

The written contract 

The result of your negotiations should be set straight in a written legal document. Payment terms, exceptions, details, everything. Again, it’s best to count with a language professional to take care of this and read it over with you. 

Alternative paperwork 

The paperwork requested is any paperwork that can provide certainty you’ll be able to make your down payment and bear additional costs. If you can justify your wealth through assets outside of the US, it’s OK as long as you can also present your foreign accounts and assets in English. 

Need a lending hand? Contact us at LST. 

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