By Rodney Anderson
This is the time of year when we celebrate and thank our veterans for their sacrifice to America., it’s also a perfect time to note that the U.S. Government’s offering of VA loans is a part of that. It’s a terrific program and a popular one. Here are 4 Get-Educated Points on the availability of VA loans …
1 First off, know that with some banks tightening their lending standards, the Veterans Affairs mortgages, known as VA loans, can be a savior for people. These VA loans are among of the few mortgage options for borrowers who don’t have down payments. They are available to more than 22 million veterans and active military members. And VA loans are somewhat easier to qualify for than conventional mortgages. We’ve seen nearly 500,000 loans guaranteed by the VA this year … and my office is ready to pitch in and help!
2 Now to the matter of eligibility. Most members of the military, veterans, reservists and National Guard members are eligible to apply for a VA loan. You can get a certificate of eligibility before applying for a loan. You can even submit the form online, and again, my office can guide you there.
3 No down payment is needed here. There are many ways to solve the challenges, and even with conventional loans, hey, if you’ve got good credit, this is a time for you to buy and re-fi. But for veterans, it’s even more attractive. Loans guaranteed by the VA can be obtained without any down payment. Another plus: A VA loan doesn’t require mortgage insurance. No mortgage insurance saves hundreds a month. No down payment, of course, saves thousands and thousands right up front!
4 Finally, what about credit scores? We talk so much about the importance of credit scores for conventional loans … and for all of us as consumers … what about for VA loans? Well, in my office we’ll ask for a credit score of 620 or higher. Potential borrowers still need to be in good financial health, however the credit score requirements are just less stringent than a conventional loan.
By the way, it’s worth noting as you prepare to call us that VA loans are available only to finance a primary home. A VA loan cannot be used to purchase or refinance vacation or investment properties.
The VA works hard to help veterans achieve the American dream, and we’re glad to be a part of it … Celebrating the contributions of our veterans shouldn’t be a once-a-year occasion. We appreciate them year round!