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Who Is Eligible For Va Loans

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Do Ask Your Lender For Help

VA Home Loan Program: Eligibility

Common delays may be prevented if you go straight to your VA-approved lender to get your COE. Most approved lenders have access to the VA online system and can print most COEs on the spot in a matter of seconds. Not all COEs can be obtained this way, but many can. If your document cannot be obtained instantly, its still a very good idea to enlist your lenders help in obtaining it another way.

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Applying For Va Coe As A Surviving Spouse

Surviving Spouses have a special set of procedures to follow when applying for a VA COE.

To apply, VA Form 26-1880 must be accompanied by the veterans discharge documents and/or enlistment paperwork as well as a marriage certificate, death certificate, and any paperwork showing receipt of VA Dependency & Indemnity Compensation benefits.

If you need to apply for DIC,. youll need to include VA Form 26-1817, Request for Determination of Loan Guaranty EligibilityUnmarried Surviving Spouses.

What Is The Va Guarantee

The US Department of Veterans Affairs guarantees a certain amount of the loan. This means that if a borrower defaults in any way on paying back the loan, the department will pay back a certain amount to the lender, depending upon your VA loan entitlement.

This VA guarantee makes it easy for lenders to provide mortgages at lower interest rates.

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Can A Veteran And Non

There are lenders who will make a joint loan for a veteran and a non-spouse, non-veteran co-borrower . A combined VA loan is when a veteran takes out a loan with their brother, father, or unmarried significant other.

These possibilities are entirely plausible, but they differ significantly from a conventional VA purchase loan. Because the VA only guarantees the veterans portion of the loan, this is the case .

To get more information on VA Loans or to get Prequalified click Cain Mortgage Team or contact us today at 803 261 9267!

Minimum Credit Score For A Va Loan

What is a VA Loan Certificate of Eligibility

The VA has established no minimum credit score for a VA mortgage.

However, many VA mortgage lenders require minimum FICO scores of 620 or higher so apply with many lenders if your credit score might be an issue.

Even VA lenders that allow lower credit scores dont accept subprime credit.

VA underwriting guidelines state that applicants must have paid their obligations on time for at least the most recent 12 months to be considered satisfactory credit risks.

In addition, the VA usually requires a two-year waiting period following a Chapter 7 bankruptcy or foreclosure before it will insure a loan.

Borrowers in Chapter 13 must have made at least 12 on-time payments and secure the approval of the bankruptcy court.

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Will A Short Sale Affect My Va Loan Eligibility

In general, the answer to this question is no. Because short sales are handled by the lender and are typically completed outside of typical mortgage processes, it generally does not affect your eligibility for a VA loan.

That said, there may be some exceptions to this rule depending on the circumstances surrounding your case. For example, if you have been delinquent on your payments or issued multiple mortgage modifications in the past, a short sale may still impact your eligibility to borrower from certain lenders.

Veteran Mortgage Relief With The Va Loan

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, or VA, provides home retention assistance. The VA intervenes when a veteran is having trouble making home loan payments.

The VA works with loan servicers to offer loan options to the veteran, other than foreclosure.

In fiscal year 2019, the VA made over 400,000 contact actions to reach borrowers and loan servicers. The intent was to work out a mutually agreeable repayment option for both parties.

More than 100,000 veteran homeowners avoided foreclosure in 2019 alone thanks to this effort.

The initiative has saved the taxpayer an estimated $2.6 billion. More importantly, vast numbers of veterans and military families got another chance at homeownership.

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Next Steps For Applying For A Va Loan

The process of applying for a VA Loan may seem daunting to some borrowers. However, it becomes easier to comprehend the process when broken down into simple steps.

  • Make sure your lender is VA-approved
  • You need to get a Certificate of Eligibility
  • Check your loan amount pre-qualification
  • The lender orders a VA appraisal and processes the application
  • Getting Your Loan Closed

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What The Coe Tells The Lender

VA Home Loan Public Service Announcement

Your VA Certificate Of Eligibility tells your participating VA lender a variety of things including:

  • How much VA loan entitlement you have to use
  • Your current status in the military
  • The last four digits of your Social Security NumberAny applicable VA entitlement code

If you have never used your VA home loan benefits before, you have 100% entitlement to use. However, you may or may not use all 100% of the entitlement for your home loan.

Any remaining entitlement is technically available to use on another VA loan at some point down the line. Those who have used their VA home loan benefits before but have paid off the original VA mortgage can apply to have their VA loan entitlement restored to 100% to use for another loan.

But that entitlement restoration is not automatic. It must be applied for and reflected on your VA COE when you go to use your VA loan benefits again. Your lender should check to see how much VA loan entitlement you have to use before approving or denying the mortgage loan.

The VA COE also tells your lender if you are currently receiving or are eligible to receive VA compensation for service-connected medical issues.

This is crucial because receipt of such VA benefits makes you eligible to apply for an exemption to the VA loan funding fee. That fee is normally calculated as a percentage of the loan and can amount to a savings of thousands depending on circumstances.

As with many other VA loan issues, this option is not automatic and must be applied for.

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Who Can Be On The Title On A Va Loan


Only the following parties are permitted to appear on the title of a VA loan:

  • The military member or veteran
  • A veteran or military member, as well as their spouse
  • Two veterans/military personnel or
  • If permitted, a veteran/service member and a non-veteran/service member, with a 12.5 percent down payment required to cover the VA guarantee deficiency.

The home must be the primary residence of all parties mentioned in the title.

Q: I Sold The Property I Obtained With My Prior Va Loan On An Assumption Can I Get My Eligibility Restored To Use For A New Loan

A: In this case the veteran’s eligibility can be restored only if the qualified assumer is also an eligible veteran who is willing to substitute his or her available eligibility for that of the original veteran. Otherwise, the original veteran cannot have eligibility restored until the assumer has paid off the VA loan.

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Getting The Lenders Help With Your Va Coe

As mentioned above, its possible to apply for a VA COE yourself using the VA eBenefits portal, or by mail. You can also get the lenders assistance to obtain your Certificate of Eligibility but there are some instances where the lender may not be able to help.

One of those situations is when a qualifying surviving spouse wants to apply for the VA COE. VA loan rules require these applicants to apply through the VA directly. It may be best for surviving spouses to call the VA at their toll-free number for the most current guidance for the COE process.

Lenders also may not be able to help service members who have had a VA loan in the past that went into loan default and foreclosure, and those who have any military discharge other than Honorable will have to contact the VA directly for assistance.

Who Is Eligible For A Va Home Loan

Bob Pezzella

Servicemen/women and/or their spouses can be eligible for these loans, provided that they did not remarry.

You can find the exact details of eligibility in this link. However, the basics will be listed and outlined below.

  • World War II Veterans that served at least 90 days.
  • Post-WWII and served at least 181 continuous days.
  • Korean War and served at least 90 days.
  • Post-Korean War and served at least 181 continuous days.
  • Vietnam War and served at least 90 days. *For Vets who served in the Republic of Vietnam, the beginning date is 2/28/1961
  • Post-Vietnam War and served at least 181 continuous days. *The ending date for officers is 10/16/1981
  • 24-Month Rule served at least 24 continuous months OR the full period for which you were called or ordered to active duty.
  • Gulf War served at least 24 continuous months OR the full period for which you were called or ordered to active duty.
  • Currently on Active Duty for at least 90 continuous days.

National Guards and Reserves are also eligible if they meet the following:

  • Gulf War and 90 days of active service.
  • Six years of service in the Selected Reserve or National Guard, AND
  • Were discharged honorably, OR
  • Were placed on the retired list, OR
  • Were transferred to the Standby Reserve or an element of the Ready Reserve other than the Selected Reserve after service characterized as honorable, OR
  • Continue to serve in the Selected Reserve

Spouses can also be eligible to apply for a VA Loan if they:

Property Eligibilities:

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Va Entitlement: What Is It

All veterans start out with the same amount of entitlement. This amount may be reduced due to prior usage. Veterans must have sufficient VA entitlement to guarantee 25% of the loan, or a combination of VA guaranty, equity, or down payment to cover 25% of the loan in order to sell the loan on the secondary market.

A basic requirement of the law governing the VA home loan program is that the veteran has a bona fide intention of occupying his or her property as a principal residence.

Home loan entitlement is not being used properly if the veteran arranges to sell or convey the property to a third party prior to closing the loan.

An eligible veteran must still meet credit and income standards in order to qualify for a VA-guaranteed loan.

Still have questions about who is eligible for a VA loan? Get matched with a VA loan expert who can help answer any questions you have. Filling out the short form below only takes a minute! Shopping multiple VA approved lenders is the easy way to get the best deal. Get started today!

Do You Know if You Qualify?

  • No credit check required by the VA
  • No employment verification required by the VA
  • No home appraisal required by the VA
  • Switch your ARM to a fixed-rate VA loan
  • Lower your interest rate, save money

If you are a veteran with an existing VA loan or mortgage, you may qualify to save with a VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan, or VA IRRRL.

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Va Mortgage Loan Options

Purchase loan:

If you are a conventional home buyer, you will most likely be looking to secure VA-backed purchase loans. This loan will help you buy, build, or improve a home with a competitive interest rate and the option to put no money down without restriction.

Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan :

If you already have a VA home loan and would like to reduce your monthly mortgage payment or interest, an Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan could be the right choice for you.

Cash-out refinance loan:

A VA-backed cash-out refinance loan can help you take cash out of your home equity. This loan will replace your current loan with a new VA loan under different terms. You can also use a VA cash-out refinance to refinance a non-VA loan into a VA-backed loan.

We would also like to mention that the VA offers a Native American Direct Loan . If you are veteran, and either you or your spouse is Native American, you may qualify for this loan. Because the VA directly backs this loan, you do not need to contact a private lender the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will serve as your lender.

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How Spouses Can Verify Their Va Loan Eligibility

Surviving spouses will also need a COE to verify eligibility and utilize their VA loan benefits. Getting a COE as a surviving spouse depends on whether or not you’re receiving Dependency and Indemnity Compensation.

Spouses receiving Dependency and Indemnity Compensation benefits must fill out VA Form 26-1817 and obtain a copy of the Veteran’s separation paperwork, such as a DD Form 214.

If you’re not receiving Dependency and Indemnity Compensation benefits, you’ll need to apply via VA Form 21P-534EZ and submit to your state’s VA Pension Management Center .

Additionally, you’ll need to provide a copy of your marriage license, the Veteran’s death certificate and the Veteran’s separation paperwork.

Surviving spouses can reach out to a Veterans United loan specialist with questions or for more details.

Finding Assumable Va Loans

Explore VA Benefits: Overview of home loans and how to apply

There are several ways for home buyers to find an assumable VA loan.

Believe it or not, print media is still alive and well. Some home sellers advertise their assumable home for sale in the newspaper, or in a local real estate publication.

There are a number of online resources for finding assumable mortgage loans.

Websites like and give homeowners a way to showcase their properties to home buyers looking to assume a loan.

With the help of the Multiple Listing Service , real estate agents remain a great resource for home buyers.

This applies to home buyers specifically searching for assumable VA loans as well.

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How To Qualify For A Va Loan

Looking to buy or revamp a home on considerably better financial terms than you’d get from a standard mortgage loan? If you’re a current or former U.S. service member, or the spouse of one, a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs loan could be just what you need.

To qualify for a VA loan, borrowers need a stable income and adequate credit. Qualified borrowers can use a VA loan to buy a house or a condo , to finance construction of a new home, or to renovate or add on to an existing property where they live. Lower down payment requirements , lower interest rates and no private mortgage insurance requirement make them very attractive loans.

How Do I Check My Va Loan Eligibility

Loans from the Department of Veterans Affairs, commonly known as VA loans, are some of the most attractive home loans out there offering the potential for zero down payments and qualification with credit scores as low as 620. If you served in any branch of the U.S. military and separated under any condition that is not dishonorable, you might qualify for a VA loan.

In addition, if you served in the National Guard or Reserves and served active duty for the full period upon which you were called, you might also quality for a VA loan. Active duty service members, as well as the surviving spouses of veterans are also eligible.

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Why Va Loans Are Good

If eligible, VA Home Loans can be used to build a home, purchase and/or improve a home, condo , make improvements to a home or even purchase a mobile/manufactured home and/or lot. They have lower fees and are guaranteed loans, backed by the U.S. Department of Affairs .

VA Loans offer those eligible with 103.15% financing, without the need for mortgage insurance , and/or a 20% second mortgage with up to $6,000 for energy related improvements to the home.

No Down Payment: if you are qualified for a VA loan, one great advantage is that you can purchase a home thats worth up to $415,000 and not pay a penny down. While most loans require a significant down payment , youll be off the hook.

Bankruptcy or Foreclosures arent automatic disqualifications: most conventional loans are backed by lenders that will most likely disqualify anyone with a foreclosure or bankruptcy on their credit history over the past 2 years. However, this isnt the always the case with VA Loans. You may be still be eligible for the loan after 2 years.

No PMI : while most conventional loans require a down payment, many cant afford to pay down 20% of the loan. PMI will usually be required for those who cant afford the down payment. While these fees vary, theyre irrelevant to this type of loan. Good for you.

Higher DTI: you can qualify for a VA loan with a debt-to-income ratio of 41 percent or less, which is much higher than FHA or other conventional loans.

Who Qualifies For A Va Loan

Which Credit Score Do Lenders Use For Home Loans: Who Is Eligible For ...

For those who are eligible, VA loans are attractive because they dont require a down payment. They also have lower interest rates than many other types of mortgage loans you can get for similar terms. They dont have monthly mortgage insurance.

Although lenders set their own requirements for certain aspects of qualification, VA loans have more lenient credit requirements than many other mortgage programs.

Not all who have served in the Armed Forces qualify for a VA loan. You must meet at least one of the following criteria to qualify:

  • Youve served 181 days of active service during peacetime.
  • Youve served 90 consecutive days of active service during wartime.
  • Youve served more than 6 years of service with the National Guard or Reserves or 90 days under Title 32 with at least 30 of those days being consecutive.

Youre the spouse of a service member who lost their life in the line of duty or as the result of a service-connected disability. You generally cannot have remarried, although there are exceptions, as well as other requirements for a spouse getting a VA loan.

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