A Loan Program Specialized for Those Who've Served for Our Country
- Sep. 11, 2014
- Sarah Montoya
- Home Loans
There are many different types of loan options, but there is a loan specifically for those consumers who've served or are presently serving in the U.S. Military. Since 1944, these flexible, no-down payment loans have made it possible for more than 18 million service members to become homeowners. For the vast majority of military borrowers, VA loans represent the most powerful lending program on the market.
This program offers tremendous mortgage benefits to active-duty service members, veterans, and some surviving spouses. I will go over a general synopsis of the benefits of a VA loan which I believe is well-deserved by these individuals.
Benefits of a VA Loan
The U.S Department of Veteran Affairs mission is to fulfill President Lincoln's promise "To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan" by serving and honoring the men and women who are America's Veterans.
VA loans are beneficial to prospective homeowners as it offers a low interest rate with no down payment or mortgage insurance requirements. Veterans who would not otherwise qualify for a home loan due to poor credit or not having a down payment are usually able to finance a home through the VA program.
The main purpose of the VA home loan program is to help veterans finance the purchase of a home with favorable loan terms and a competitive interest rate when compared to other mortgage loan programs. In essence, as gratitude for honorable military service, the government is vouching for the Veteran's trustworthiness to repay his/her debt. This special home loan has many advantages such as:
- No Down Payment Required. This depends on the lender.
- Competitive Interest Rate.
- Reusable. It means you can use the VA entitlement over and over again as long as you pay off the loan each time
- Available Despite Foreclosure or Bankruptcy. Service members with a history of bankruptcy or foreclosure can secure a VA loan. Even borrowers who have had a VA loan foreclosed on may still utilize their home loan benefit
- VA Loan Saving at Closing. VA regulates the closing costs that a Veteran can be charged when obtaining this type of loan. The closing cost regulation is designed to keep lenders from charging Veterans those closing costs that VA has determined as being beneficial to the lender and not necessarily beneficial to the Veteran.
- VA Loans Do Not Have Prepayment Penalties. You can make extra payments at any time, which will be saving you money long term.
- Mortgage Insurance Isn't Required. Mortgage insurance is a monthly fee borrowers pay with other programs when 20 percent isn't being put down. The VA's guaranty eliminates the need for any mortgage insurance or mortgage insurance premium.
What Is Needed to Get a VA Loan
After reading about all the benefits of a VA Home Loan, you're probably wondering, "Am I eligible?" If the following applies to you, then the answer might be yes!
- You have served 90 consecutive days of service during wartime.
- You have served 181 days of services during peacetime.
- You have more than 6 years of service in the National Guard or Reserves.
- You are the spouse of a service member who died in the line of duty or as a result of a service-related disability.
- You must occupy or intend to occupy the property as your home within a reasonable period of time after closing the loan. VA Loans are for primary residences only, they are not meant for an investment property or vacation home.
- You'll also need to obtain a certificate of eligibility from the VA.
The VA loan program offers unique benefits and quirks. Hopefully some of the questions you've been thinking have been answered! I personally think that this is a great program for those who qualify. If you're interested in proceeding with a VA Loan, learn more here.