What is a VA – Guaranteed Home Loan?
They are Loans made by private lenders (banks, savings and loans, and mortgage companies). There loans are made to eligible veterans for the purchase of a home for themselves and their families. The home you purchase must be a 1-4 family house that you will occupy. Investment property purchases are not allowed. Again, the home must be for your own personal use.
VA does not actually make any loans. The Veterans Administration only guarantees the loan. They guarantee the lender who makes the loan will not lose money if the payments are not made. This encourages lenders to make loans to veterans with more favorable terms, such as 100% financing, low rates, low fees, and reduced closing costs. The guarantee is not automatic. You must still qualify for the loan based upon the lending guarantee guidelines set by the VA. This insures they are only backing qualified borrowers and lessens their risk of loss.
What can this Loan be used for?
A VA Loan can be used to buy a home, condominium, townhouse, or co-op. It may also be used to build a home, repair or improve an existing home, add energy efficient improvements (solar heating/cooling systems, water heaters, insulation, storm doors and windows, etc.), or to refinance a home to reduce the interest rate.
Who is Eligible for a VA Loan?
- A Veteran (served 181 days during peacetime or 90 days during war)
- Reservist or National Guard (served 6 years)
- A Veteran Married to a Non Veteran
- Two Married Veterans
- Unmarried Surviving Spouse of a Veteran (Veteran must have died due to service or service related causes)
- Spouse of any member of the Armed Forces serving active duty who is listed as M.I.A or a P.O.W. and listed for more than 90 days
What are some of the advantages of a VA Loan?
- Zero Down Payment
- Limited Closing Costs
- No Monthly Mortgage Insurance
- VA Funding Fee can be Financed
- Mortgages are Assumable
- Easy Refinancing to Lower Rates
How Do I Prove that I am Eligible?
The good news is now most information can be accessed online in a few minutes! A lender will need your Certificate of Eligibility.
Full instructions are available on how to register and access your Certificate of Eligibility (COE) from the United States Department of Veteran Affairs on their website. There”s also an instructions link on my website (below).