VA loans are home mortgages designed specifically for veterans that have served a minimum of 90 days on active duty. Developed and guaranteed by the United States Department of Veteran Affairs, approved lenders can issue home loans to veterans without the stipulations of a traditional loan. Here’s everything you need to know (and more) if you’re a veteran looking to buy, refinance or modify a home.
It Starts With The VA
During the loan approval process, the Department of Veterans Affairs vouches for veterans and active duty service members – and even surviving spouses – by helping lock in a lower-than-typical interest rate. Additionally, eligible borrowers can have the benefits of a 100% financing, which means there may be no down payment necessary.
To begin the VA loan application process, service members can apply for a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) through eBenefits or their desired lender.
VA loan holders are allowed to omit mortgage insurance premiums from their payments, and can sometimes get more flexible terms with lenders. Depending on the state in which the applicant resides, service members may qualify for property tax reductions.
After comparing the VA loan holder’s discharge character and length of service, veterans might be eligible for beneficial refinancing terms. It’s called an Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan (IRRRL) or a Streamline Refinance VA to VA Loan, which is only available to current VA loan-holders. If VA loan-holders feel they’d like to pay off their loan sooner by moving from a traditional 30-year to 15-year loan, it might be a good idea to research after building some equity in the property.
Options For Disabled Veterans
If a veteran is disabled as a result of service, they may choose to apply for an Adapted Housing Grant which assists in obtaining land and homes designed specifically for inhabitants with disabilities. The VA also offers resources on design for disabilities connected to injuries sustained while on active duty. If the service member owns a house or is purchasing a home that has no modifications yet, the plans and instructions are freely available to the grantee or builder.
We are proud to honor our veterans this month, and every month. If you think a VA loan might be right for you, reach out and we can help you start the process.