VA Mortgage: The Affordable Home Loan for Service Members and Veterans
The VA home loan program was created in 1944. Since then, it has grown in popularity among service members and has helped well over 21 million brave men and women to acquire their dream homes. The loan features low-interest rates and lenient application requirements that make it possible for eligible applicants to purchase homes with ease.
On this page, our mortgage experts here at Mortgage Right have covered everything you need to know about the VA home loan and whether it is right for you.
What is a VA loan?
This is a unique mortgage loan program that is accessible to service members and veterans. Although the federal government insures the loans through the Veteran’s Affairs (VA), eligible applicants usually apply to private lenders who are VA approved. That enables service men and women to get homes affordably and easily; which is in line with the primary aim of the mortgage program.
Essentially what the Veterans Affairs does is guarantee the loan against defaulters. That is why unlike conventional mortgages, VA home loans do not require collateral such as a car or title deed. The benefit of the government’s insurance is that lenders find it easy to offer the loan with relaxed and flexible terms.
Who qualifies for the VA mortgage loan?
You may have already noticed that the VA loan is meant for veterans and service members. But it doesn’t end there, and their spouses may be eligible too.
Here is a more comprehensive list of the people who are eligible:
- Most members of the National Guard, reservists, veterans, and military are qualified to apply for the VA loan.
- Spouses of military members who died or suffered disability in line of duty.
- Active duty members qualify for the loan after six months of service.
- Members of the National Guard and Reservists are fit to apply for the loan after six years. However, if they are called for duty before the six years elapse, their eligibility is acquired after 181 days of service.
- During war periods, Reservists, active duty and National Guard members are eligible after 90 days of service. If you fall in any of the stated categories and you were on any foreign soil, eligibility is guaranteed.
Do you fit in any of those categories? Mortgage Right can help you get approved for a VA home loan. Talk to us, and we will assist you from the very first step before you get an eligibility letter until you get the keys to your dream home.
What Are The Requirements For A VA Loan?
Similar to any other type of loan, the VA mortgage comes with some essential requirements that are checked during underwriting.
Here are the details:
Credit scores for VA loans
The Veteran Affairs does not have a minimum credit score for VA loans. However, individual lenders usually set their credit score requirements. Most prefer 620 and above, but you can still qualify easily with less than that.
Keep in mind that a low credit score may attract a higher interest rate. If you are worried that your credit score might lock you out of the VA loan, contact Mortgage Right and we will help you get the mortgage regardless of your credit history.
Type of house
The sole purpose of the VA loans program is primary residence. This means that you cannot use the loan for investment or vacation property. The house is also required to meet the minimal living standards.
The Veteran Affairs does not have a loan limit, but most lenders have it at the conforming loan limit. That is $424,100 rising up to $625,000 in high-cost areas such as California and Hawaii.
VA loan fees
The closing cost of VA loans is a one-time funding fee which is mandatory paid to the Veteran Affairs. The one-time funding fee aims to keep the program running to fund future generations and also reduce the taxpayer’s burden for defaulted loans. As a first time borrower, you will pay a fee equal to 2.15% of the house value is to be paid. Your cost will reduce from 2.15% to 1.25%if you opt to make a minimum down payment of 10%.
If you need a mortgage loan for the second or third time, you will pay 3.3% of the total loan amount.
The VA guarantees a fee waiver if you are entitled to disability compensation entirely.
You can also opt to roll over the fee into your loan so that you do not have to pay it from your pocket immediately.
Certificate of eligibility
If you are a potential buyer, it is mandatory that you have the VA’s eligibility certificate. However, this should not bar you from starting with the mortgage process since most of the lenders can do it on your behalf during the preapproval phase.
Don’t have your certificate of eligibility? Not to worry, Mortgage Right can help you get one and still get started in the meantime.
What Are The Benefits Of A VA Loan?
- No down payment required by the Veteran Affairs. The down payment only applies when you have a co-borrower who is not a VA-entitled borrower or spouse.
- No private mortgage insurance (PMI) is required. This means you get to save that money to for bills or to put towards your mortgage.
- There are no prepayment penalties. You can pay your loan earlier either entirely or some part thus saving on future interest cost.
- Easy to access for the VA-entitled borrowers.
- The requirements are lenient compared to conventional home loans.
- The system is the most flexible when it comes to requirements and verification, when compared to the conventional loans programs. For instance, borrowers that are below the set credit score by lenders can still access the loan and get their dream home.
Is The VA Loan A Good Idea?
Yes, it is! A great idea in fact. The VA loan is perhaps the most affordable home loan today. To eligible veterans and service members, it is a convenient way of getting an affordable home that can help you save. So if you meet the requirements, then a VA home loan is well worth your consideration.
If you need more information about VA home loans, or any assistance with the application process contact us here at Mortgage Right, and we promise it will be worth it.