Thanks for the response. I work for a nationwide mortgage bank and have been in the bsiness for over 20 years (and still having a great time!) The 43% that you reference is related to manually underwritten files, not AU files. If LP or DU accepts the file, it is done as long as the underwriter can validate the data. That being said, some lenders have overlays that limit them to a specific DTI regardless of findings. This is an investor issue and will vary from lender to lender, but is not an FHA standard. In fact, if you are having problems closing FHA loans with DTIs above 43%, please let me know. I am sure that we have an office nearby that would love to have you on their team. :-) Again, my comments regarding the banker vs broker was related to getting more flexibility (in some areas) with a mortgage bank as opposed to a commercial bank. Anyway, thanks for the great comments and perspective.