Military Members, Are You Taking Advantage of Your Benefits?

With Memorial Day coming up, I thought I'd share a little something for those that have served or are serving in our military.

If you are a Veteran or active duty military member and are looking to purchase a home, you may be eligible for a VA Loan. Check with your loan officer to see if you qualify in order to take advantage of the benefits you earned.

What is the VA-Guaranteed Home Loan?

The Veterans Affairs created the VA Loan Guaranty Program to aide those who served with their home purchase. Along with special advantages not available through any other loan, the VA has guaranteed the loan to the lender — this means the VA will repay about a quarter of a borrower’s loan if he or she or a later owner were to default. About 8 in 10 service-persons are unable to qualify for a conventional loan because of the stricter conditions. With the VA backing the loan, borrowers with poor credit are not automatically disqualified as they typically would be with a conventional loan.

Am I Eligible for a VA Home Loan?

There are exceptions and special circumstances for which someone may be eligible, so please check with your VA Loan Specialist. Below are some VA Loan eligibility requirements:

  • Have served as an active duty member for 181 consecutive days or for 90 days during war time
  • Have been in the National Guard or Reserves for at least six years
  • Are an un-remarried spouse of a Veteran who died during service or from a service-connected disability
  • Are a spouse of a military member missing in action or a prisoner of war

If you would like to learn more, go to the VA’s Web site Eligibility Frequently Asked Questions page. Do note that children of Veterans and active duty members are not eligible for the loan unless they themselves serve.

Why choose a VA Loan over others?

This program is just one small way to thank the military men and women. Not only does the VA Loan help people get into a home when a conventional loan may not, but it also offers many more advantages available exclusively to the Military:

  • No down payment
  • No private mortgage insurance
  • Right to prepay—penalty free
  • Mortgage interest rates are negotiable
  • Limitations on closing costs
  • Loan backed by the VA

When you choose to begin your home purchase, be sure to pick a loan officer who specializes in VA Loans. Many banks and mortgage brokers rarely work with these loans, meaning they are unfamiliar with the process, so your experience could take much longer than it needs to be. Review a list of the latest VA mortgage rates, which are currently at all time lows.

Photo by Randy Son Of Robert

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  1. A lot of my buds who just got back from overseas are renting right now. It probably would be better if they took advantage of their VA loans especially since prices and rates are so low right now.