Active duty service members, as well as veterans who meet certain requirements, may qualify for a home loan that’s backed by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. Because these loans are meant for those who have served this country in the military, there are some stringent requirements about who qualifies for them.
In order to get a VA home loan, you have to go through the process of receiving a Certificate of Eligibility from the VA. This isn’t a difficult task, but your lender will need this document if you’re going to utilize a VA home loan for your purchase.
Who Qualifies for a VA Home Loan?
The specific qualifications for VA home loan eligibility depending on when you served in the military. They also depend on the type of service you provide. Requirements are different for active duty, National Guard, and reserve members.
It’s sometimes possible for individuals to qualify for a VA home loan even if they don’t meet the time-in-service requirements. The only way to find out for sure is to contact the VA for a Certificate of Eligibility.
Active Duty Service Members
With the exception of some active war periods, you must serve at least 24 continuous months or the full period you were ordered to serve on active duty. There are exceptions for people discharged due to a service-related disability, reduction in force, or hardship.
Vietnam and World War II veterans and those who served in the post-period, which includes those who served from September 16, 1940, through September 7, 1980, have a lower service time requirement. This ranges from 90 to 181 days minimum, depending on the dates of service.
National Guard Members
Any National Guard member who’s served from August 2, 1990, through today qualifies if they served at least 90 days on active duty. Those who served prior to that date can qualify without active duty service if they have six years of service in the National Guard.
The time in service requirement is the same for Reserve members as it is for National Guard members. These individuals have an added requirement. They must either be placed on the retired list, discharged honorably, or placed on the Standby Reserve or Ready Reserve. Individuals who are still in the Selected Reserve can also qualify for a VA home loan.
Why are VA Home Loans Attractive?
These are affordable home loans that don’t require a down payment or mortgage insurance, so they’re an attractive option for those who qualify. There’s no prepayment penalty, and VA loans typically have good loan rates.
Closing costs, funding fees, and qualification requirements are also favorable. Another huge benefit is that they’re assumable loans, which means you can transfer the loan to another VA-eligible home buyer if you decide to sell the home.
Active duty service members and veterans who are ready to purchase the home of their dreams should contact The Potempa Team to learn more about VA home loans and their benefits. Our experienced team can walk you through the process so you can enjoy your new home as soon as possible.