7 Best Physician Mortgage Loans in South Carolina


Physician mortgage loans in South Carolina are available to medical doctors, dentists and other professionals depending on the specific loan program of the lender.

Key Terms

  • A South Carolina physician mortgage loan comes with high loan limits and options for up to 100% financing.
  • Student loan payments typically receive favorable treatment with a doctor loan, making it easier to qualify for a mortgage.
  • Physician mortgages don’t require private mortgage insurance (PMI) even with a 0% down payment.

With about 60 miles of beachfront resorts in the Grand Strand and the historically charming Coastal Charleston, South Carolina brings with it a lot of character. This state has some of the best beaches in the country, beautiful open farmlands, and it also happens to be the golf capital of the country with numerous courses in cities like Myrtle Beach. It certainly has a lot to offer to its residents, including some 12,000+ doctors

The South Carolina Realtors Association lists the median home price in the state at $326,000, which is over 20% higher than the same time last. There is no doubt that home values are on the rise here and that’s not even taking into account the price increases in the urban areas that are desirable to most medical doctors.

For doctors and physicians thinking about buying or refinancing a home here, doing so with the South Carolina doctor loan program may help make it a bit easier to do so. For qualified professionals, this loan program allows buyers to purchase or refinance with a low down payment or, in some cases, none at all.

Show Me Lenders

Pros/Cons of South Carolina physician mortgage loans

Are there both pros and cons that come with entering into a South Carolina physician loan? Of course. Anyone doing their due diligence will want to look at both sides, as well. 

Pros associated with South Carolina physician mortgage products:

  1. You can enjoy higher limits on these loans when compared to conventional loans or FHA loans
  2. You do not have to take out Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)
  3. Your student debt will receive special consideration by these lenders
  4. You can receive 100 percent financing in some cases

Cons associated with South Carolina physician mortgages:

  1. Higher limits can cause you to buy more house than you can afford
  2. You may have to pay a higher interest rate

Get Quotes for Your Physician Loan

7 Top South Carolina physician home loan lenders

Some lenders only offer physician mortgage loans to attending physicians, while other programs can lend to those still in residency or fellowship.

1. TD Bank

TD Bank is one of the largest banks in the United States. While primarily operating on the east coast, in recent years they have expanded their footprint through a series of acquisitions and now rank as one of the top 10 banks in the country. The bank offers a full suite of financial products, including a physician loan.

We reached out to a loan officer at TD Bank to find out more details about their doctor mortgage. Our key takeaways and program highlights are below:

  • 0% down up to $750,000
  • 5% down up to $1,250,000
  • 10% down up to $1,500,000
  • The following degrees qualify: practicing physician (MD, DO or DPM), dentist (DDS or DMD) and oral surgeon.
  • Licensed medical resident or fellow and licensed dental resident or fellow qualifies
  • If self employed doctor or dentist, you must have owned your practice or have been otherwise self-employed for at least two years
  • Available property types: single family residence, condominium, co-op (in specific markets only) and property in a planned unit development (PUD).
  • Fixed or adjustable rate loans available
  • No private mortgage insurance
  • Flexible approach to debt-to-income understanding that medical professionals have significant student loan debt
  • Contract for new employment can be used to qualify for mortgage
  • Minimum credit score of 720 (for loans below $750,000) or 740 (for loans above $750,000)
  • Must be within 10 years of residency or fellowship

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer experienced in doctor mortgages, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

2. Keybank

Keybank has over $170 billion in assets and is the 24th largest bank in the Untied States. They operate throughout 39 states but can originate mortgages in nearly all 50, making them a popular choice among medical doctors throughout the country. One of their key financial products is a physician loan.

While Keybank doesn’t post a lot of information about their doctor mortgage online, we were able to get in touch with a loan officer at the bank to get all the important details. See below for an overview of the program details:

  • 0% down up to $1,000,000
  • 5% down up to $1,500,000
  • 15% down up to $2,000,000
  • No private mortgage insurance
  • Gifts permitted for down payments
  • Can close on the strength of an employment contract up to 90 days prior to the start of employment
  • Minimum credit score is 700
  • Student loan repayments can be calculated based on income driven student loan payments
  • Fixed loans offered in 10, 15, 20, 25 or 30-year terms
  • Adjustable-rate mortgages offered in 5/6, 7/6 and 10/6 options
  • No minimum or maximum years in practice for eligibility
  • Reserve requirements are: 2 months (loans under $500K), 4 months (loans between $500K – $750L), 6 months for loans over $750K plus an additional 2 months if closing prior to start date. Retirement accounts count toward reserve requirements.
  • US Citizens, Permanent Residents and H1B Visa holders are eligible
  • California loans require a minimum of 5% down

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer experienced in doctor mortgages, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

3. Huntington Bank

Huntington Bank is the 26th largest bank in the United States. Operating primarily out of the Midwest, their mortgage group can service a large part of the country. Huntington has a competitive physician loan product with no money down financing options.

We contacted a loan officer at Huntington Bank to gather information about the doctor mortgage and here’s what we heard back:

  • 0% down payment up to $1 million
  • 5% down payment up to $1.25 million
  • 10% down payment up to $2 million
  • Maximum financing up to $2 million
  • Eligible degrees are: MD, DO, DDS, DVM or DMD
  • Residents are eligible
  • Minimum credit score is 700
  • 2 months reserves required (6 months for jumbo loans) – reserves can be held in bank or investment accounts
  • Gift funds for down payment are OK
  • 30-year and 15-year fixed-rate mortgages
  • ARMs available in 7/6, 10/6 or 15/6 terms
  • Can close on the strength of a new employment contract without paystubs
  • No private mortgage insurance
  • No prepayment penalty

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer experienced in doctor mortgages, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

4. Alerus Mortgage

Alerus Financial Corporation is a publicly traded chain of financial institutions headquartered in North Dakota. They offer banking, mortgage, wealth management and retirement services, including a physician loan for those doctors looking to buy a house.

We contacted a loan officer at Alerus to learn more about their physician loan program and here are the key terms that you need to know:

  • Must be within your first two years of practice to qualify.
  • 0% down up to $750,000
  • 5% down up to $1,000,000
  • ARM and fixed rate financing available

Alerus also has a special $20,000 closing guarantee with all mortgages. The $20,000 guarantee is paid to the seller if the loan does not close based on the conditions and expiration date of the approval as outlined in the Alerus pre-approval letter.

In other words, this $20,000 guarantee gives you extra negotiation leverage when competing with all-cash home purchase price offers. If your mortgage doesn’t close, the seller is compensated $20,000 for their trouble.

Of course there’s some fine print on the guaranty so keep in mind that it’s not available for new construction and isn’t applicable if:

  • Borrower, seller or any third party cause the delay or elect not to close on the real estate sale.
  • Borrower fails to sign required disclosures or provide key documents by the requested due date.

The $20,000 guarantee, if applicable, is available to the seller only and not any of seller’s agents, representatives or related parties.

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

5. Flagstar Bank

Flagstar Bank was chartered in 1987 and holds around $23 billion in assets, making it a medium-sized bank. However, they punch well above their weight when it comes to mortgages and operate as the sixth largest bank mortgage lender nationally. Not surprisingly, a big part of their success has been a doctor mortgage program.

We contacted Flagstar Bank to learn more details about their physician loan. Here are the key terms that you need to know?

  • 5, 7 & 10 year ARM  products
  • 0% down up to $1,000,000 (first time homebuyer – have not owned in last 3 years)
  • 5% down up to $1,500,000 (first time homebuyer – have not owned in last 3 years)
  • If not a first-time home buyer
  • 10% down up to $1,000,000
  • 15% down up to $1,500,000
  • 20% down up to $2,000,000
  • 25% down up to $2,500,000
  • Fixed products
  • 10% down on the jumbo fixed to a max loan amount of $1,000,000 with no PMI
  • 20% down on the jumbo 30 year fixed with a max loan amount of $3,000,000
  • For first time home buyer (have not owned within last 3 years):
  • 3% down up to $647,200
  • If not a first time home buyer:
  • 5% down up to county limit (with and without PMI)
  • Medical doctors and lawyers are eligible. We weren’t able to confirm that the program is available to dentists and other (non-doctor) medical professionals, but encourage you to contact them to confirm.

The total reported lender fees as of the date of this article were $1395 ($550 processing and $845 for underwriting).

Another benefit of Flagstar is that they can submit a full file to underwriting for an actual loan approval (not pre-approval) without having a purchase contract signed, which makes you competitive with all cash offers and the process less stressful for you. There is no application fee or prepayment penalties. They also offer a float down, buy down, and recast option.

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer experienced in doctor mortgages, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

6. First Horizon Bank

First Horizon Bank is a full-service bank located in Memphis, Tennessee. They recently completed a merger with Iberia Bank and are scheduled to be merged into TD Bank in 2023, making this an active bank. They also happen to have a competitive doctor mortgage program.

We spoke with a loan officer at First Horizon Bank to get some inside information on its doctor mortgage program for you. Here’s what you need to know:

  • 0% down up to $1,500,000
  • 30 Year Fixed Rate
  • ARMs available
  • Primary residences only
  • Student loan debt is not included in calculating debt-to-income ratio when deferred for more than 12 months.
  • Maximum financing amount is $2 million
  • No PMI
  • No pre-payment penalty

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer experienced in doctor mortgages, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

7. Citizens Bank

Citizens Bank is one of the largest banks in the United States. I bet you didn’t know that it’s headquartered in the smallest state: Rhode Island. With over $160 billion in assets, it’s no surprise that Citizens offers a full range of financial products, including a physician loan.

We contacted a loan officer at Citizens Bank to learn more about their doctor mortgage loan program specifically. Here are details you won’t find anywhere else:

  • 5% down up to $850,000
  • 10% down up to $1,000,000
  • Practicing licensed medical doctors (MD and DO), dentists (DDS and DMD), residents and research physicians are eligible
  • Licensed residents, fellows and interns can borrow a maximum of $600,00 (or $400,000 if unlicensed)
  • No more than 10 years out of residency
  • Self-employed professionals are eligible with a two-year history of self-employment income
  • New medical professional graduates who are under contract for residency within 60 days of closing and have not yet obtained a license are eligible
  • No private mortgage insurance
  • 40% max debt-to-income ratio
  • Student loan debt that’s deferred for more than 12 months from the date of closing can be excluded from DTI calculations
  • Construction-to-permanent loans available with a maximum of 89% financing
  • Fixed rate or adjustable-rate mortgage options
  • Interest-only option on certain adjustable-rate mortgage options (max financing at 89%)

When you’re ready to connect with a loan officer experienced in doctor mortgages, use our form to quickly match with eligible loan programs based on your specific circumstances.

Is a South Carolina physician mortgage loan right for you?

After reviewing all of your options when it comes to physician home loan lenders in South Carolina, you may be asking if one of these loans is right for you. A good rule of thumb is to hold off on a mortgage until you have spent at least a year or two in a job. 

You never want to be in a situation where you are unhappy in a position, but now tied to it because of your mortgage. If you know that you will love your job, you might be happy to know that you can get approved for a doctor mortgage off of an offer letter alone, streamlining the approval process. 

Run the math on the interest rate you are offered, too. Over the life of your mortgage, a higher interest rate can add up to a tidy sum. If you want to save up and try to qualify for a conventional mortgage, that may save you some money. Keep in mind, however, that doctor mortgages come with no PMI, offering you some savings in that respect. 

Examples of doctors who use physician loans in South Carolina

Doctors from all parts of South Carolina are taking out physician loans. Their reasons for doing so may sound familiar to you, and we’ve listed just a few below. 

Doctor who wants a bigger home

With a thriving family practice outside Myrtle Beach, Randy is ready to upgrade his family to a larger home. He can certainly afford one, but the limits on conventional mortgages are holding him back. A doctor mortgage features much higher limits, providing him with more leverage on a competitive housing market. He is ready to make an offer on a 5-bedroom home with plenty of acreage thanks to a physician loan. 

An anesthesiologist who doesn’t have a big enough down payment

Twenty percent down on a home in Columbia means that Tammy, an anesthesiologist, will need at least 60k on the table for down payment and closing costs. That would mean taking a big portion out of her family’s savings. A doctor mortgage offered by a local lender is extending 100 percent financing to high earners like Tammy, meaning that she can get her first home without compromising her safety net. 

If you’re looking to explore physician mortgage loans in other states, check out our national overview and faqs of physician loans as a starting point in your search.

Find a Physician Loan Specialist

Joshua Holt

Joshua Holt is a licensed mortgage loan originator (NMLS #2306824) and founder of Biglaw Investor. His mortgage expertise lies in the areas of professional mortgage loans, particularly for lawyers, doctors and other high-income professionals. Prior to Biglaw Investor, Josh practiced private equity mergers & acquisition law for one of the largest law firms in the country.

Save more money than your friends

One email each week covers personal finance, financial independence, investing and other stuff for lawyers that makes you better.