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Investment Properties

By John Aretos, CEO of Police Mortgage

If somebody walks into a Chicago police credit union, and we all know that almost certainly is going to be us, and wants to buy investment property we want to know if it will be a secondary residence or something like a rental or VRBO.

An example of a secondary residence would be if I own a home in the suburbs and I want to buy a condominium unit on the lakefront of Chicago. That condo unit, if I’m using it for personal use and it’s enough miles away from where I presently live, that’s going to be considered a secondary residence. Thus, I’m going to be able to get the same interest rate I would if that were my own primary residence because I’m not using it for rental income.

All of the qualifications are the same as a primary residence. That’s a very rare transaction because not many people have the disposable income to buy a second home and use it as a vacation home for their own personal pleasure. That’s rarely an example of a police home loan.

When it comes to investment properties, we’re usually dealing with one to four-unit single family homes. Anything above four units is considered a commercial transaction.

If a client wants to buy a single-family home in another town in another state, and they want to use that for VRBO or for Airbnb that’s fine but he or she is going to have to show assets. They’re going to have to show a greater threshold to demonstrate the ability to withstand an economic event that would cause an inability to rent the property. In commercial business lingo that’s called vacancy rate, which usually is 75% of the total amount that you would be taking in for monthly rents for investment property.

If it’s a single-family home, you can go as low as 10% down but we’re going to recommend that you put 20% or 25% down because the rate adjustments are astronomical. In today’s day and age with rates going up, it’s going to be even harder to justify buying one of those properties.

When it comes to mortgages for police officers, we’re going to be looking for six months of your qualifying monthly payment on deposit, whether it be in a liquid account or a brokerage account that can be liquidated. That’s going to be a requirement to show that you have what they call the reserves to be able to make the payment.

Today is a difficult market for investment properties but if somebody has 20% to put down and they have a 800 credit score along with more than six months’ worth of qualifying payments in reserves, absolutely, we can handle that transaction.

I cannot stress enough that you must have really good credit and you have to have the assets. This isn’t one of those deals where somebody thinks that they like the idea of buying an investment property and they’re going to save a down payment as they go along.

Again, this is not for the inexperienced. This is not for the meek.  This is for somebody understands that the burden of proof is going to be on the client to be able to qualify.

Police Mortgage specializes in conventional mortgages, purchase money transactions, FHA loans, and VA loans. Led by founder and CEO John Aretos, Police Mortgage is known and respected for providing clients with exceptional service, customized terms, quick and easy closings, and low money down options. To learn more about Police Mortgage, go to  or call 312-499-8878.

Police Mortgage for First Responders Who Are Second To None.

Vivian Abraham
NMLS #2451439

I have my bachelor’s in business administration and have been involved in the banking industry for over 10 years. During that time, I managed two of the Chicago Patrolmen’s Federal Credit Union branch locations prior to transitioning to Police Mortgage. I have family members who are police officers with the Chicago Police Department. My work has been very rewarding, and I take pride in having assisted countless members and their families with their financial needs and financial wellness. My hobbies include exploring new restaurants in the city and running in marathons that support pediatric cancer foundations and Chicago Police Memorial Foundation’s Run to Remember. I come from a large family primarily from the south side of Chicago and love to share all the diversity and beauty the city has to offer with my two children.

Patrick Doah
Loan Officer
NMLS #2025761

I am honored to grow up in a multi-generational family of Chicago Police Officers. I joined Police Mortgage in the summer of 2020 and love the opportunity to help both first-time buyers and repeat clients alike achieve their dreams of purchasing a home. Having been born and raised in the south suburbs of Chicago, I happily live in the Lakeview neighborhood today. Along with my two younger sisters, I am a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a lifelong Chicago Bears fan. I have a strong passion for food and love exploring the vast array of restaurants throughout our city. Nothing makes me happier than spending a summer afternoon on a golf course with family and friends!

Connor Walsh
Loan Officer
NMLS #2221708

I joined my brother at Police Mortgage as a loan officer in August of 2021 after a 10-year career in sales and marketing. Most recently, I worked as a Senior Account Executive for Ricoh North America, an office electronics company, where my main responsibilities were building new client relationships and maintaining over 400 existing customer accounts. I believe my work experience has transferred over to the mortgage industry well, because I am able to multi-task effectively while working with multiple customers. The skillset I learned in my previous employment allows me to stay organized and to manage my time well for my customers. My number one goal is always to make the loan process as quick and painless as possible for our borrowers. I am excited to further develop the Police Mortgage brand with my brother. It is a unique situation, and I believe working in an office together allows us to help our borrowers even more due to streamlined communication and our ability to help each other with our respective files. I like to spend my free time relaxing, watching sports, exercising, going out to eat with my wife, and trying to keep up with our three daughters – all under five years old!

Dylan Walsh
Loan Officer
NMLS #180970

After graduating from the University of Missouri in 2015, I moved to Chicago where I began a career in marketing at a firm called Ansira. I sought a career change and contacted Police Mortgage, where I was first introduced to the mortgage industry. I have spent the last 5 years training with our CEO, John Aretos, who has taught me all of the intricacies of the mortgage process. I love finding solutions for our clients to help them purchase the home of their dreams. I feel a huge sense of accomplishment when helping homebuyers, especially first-time homebuyers, all the way through the loan process, from pre-approval to closing day. I recently moved back to my hometown of St. Louis, where we opened a new office. I am excited to help start this new chapter for Police Mortgage. My wife, Megan, and I are happy to be back in our hometown. We are always checking out new outdoor events such as music or food festivals – anywhere we can take our dog, Remy!

John Aretos
NMLS #268165

As the CEO of an organization associated with serving the Police and their loved ones, I am privileged to play a role in helping our clients achieve their life’s financial goals. Our mission is to make the home buying or refinancing process as comfortable as possible, providing our clients with competitive products and excellent service.

I was born and raised in the Chicago metropolitan area, and I have a deep-rooted love and appreciation for the diverse culture which makes our city so special. My two older siblings and I grew up working in our parent’s restaurant, which instilled a work ethic and sense of family that I carry with me to this day.

I am a graduate of Indiana University and have been involved in the mortgage industry for nearly 25 years, helping thousands of clients save money or finance the home of their dreams. My passions are passing down my love of food, music, art, snow skiing, and red wine to my three children, who motivate me to be a better person each and every day!