FHA does allow a non owner occupied coborrower. However I'm just not sure about the two family residence. It may be possible, I just gon't know. As for shopping around that's ok but I do not recommend online lenders. They tend to overpromise and charge extra fees in addition some will send your application to too many investors causing your credit score to drop. Better to contact a couple local lenders someone you can see face to face. From any lender you do have preapprove you make sure you get a GOOD FAITH ESTIMATE OF CLOSING COSTS This is a written estimate that will document their fees that you can use later if they try to tack on extra fees. Good luck!
I would strongly recommend speaking to a local, reputable lender about FHA loans and the guidelines. You may want to speak with a Realtor in your area and ask them if they can give you a couple names of reputable lenders.
It is never a good idea to go online for preapproval, it is much safer financially and wiser to find someone you can sit down with and have them show you your best options for your situation.
Deja Lett, Associate Broker
Assist 2 Sell Home Team Advantage
207-282-0990 Ext. 403