Service members, Veterans and eligible spouses can become homeowners through use of the government-backed VA loan. All too often, eligible borrowers don’t take advantage of this opportunity because they don’t fully understand eligibility requirements or aren’t aware of these valuable benefits.
The Veteran’s Administration originally introduced this program to assist p war veterans who may have missed the opportunity to establish a credit rating necessary for borrowing to purchase a home or start a business. The program is available to nearly every veteran or active duty member of the military, provided they meet certain qualifications such as time served, conditions of discharge, etc.
The features and benefits of a VA home loan include:
- An eligible buyer may purchase a home with little or no down payment.
- No mortgage insurance is required, allowing a significantly lower payment when compared to other loan types.
- The qualifying buyer may borrow up to the prevailing Federal Housing Finance Agency’s limits, with the maximum loan amount adjusted upwards in areas with higher home prices.
- Refinance options are available, including the VA Streamline Refinance program (Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan, or IRRRL) to allow homeowners with a VA loan to easily refinance into a lower interest rate mortgage if rates have dropped, with no appraisal or credit underwriting requirement.
- Disabled veterans may be eligible for additional benefits, such as a waiver of the VA Funding Fee.
So why don’t more eligible borrowers take advantage of a VA Loan? The biggest obstacle is probably simply a lack of awareness of the program. It’s important when shopping for a lender to find one who offers all types of loans and has the expertise necessary to recognize what programs are best for each client’s unique needs.
On the other hand, a veteran shouldn’t assume that a VA Loan is always going to be their best option! After consultation with one of our expert Loan Officers, you may find that there are alternatives that work better for your situation. At HomeStreet, we offer a wide variety of loan options and will take the time to get to know you – an important part of the home buying process. Borrowers often worry more about the home selection process than they do about how they are going to finance the home. Both are incredibly important choices! If you put as much thought into selecting a lender as you do an agent, you are far more likely to experience smooth sailing into your new home, regardless of the type of loan you end up with!
To meet a local HomeStreet Loan Officer, use the form below to provide your contact details. We’ll have an expert get in touch with you. Don’t forget to mention that you may have VA eligibility!