Overview of VA Loans The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has mandated certain benefits be granted to veterans when applying for a home loan. The VA does not act as the lender for these loans – that’s still our job – rather, they have regulated the terms and rates for qualifying borrowers’ loans. After applying for a loan, the VA will guarantee the borrower a portion of the loan amount. This is a prime way for Tennessee veterans to secure the homes they deserve.
VA Loan Eligibility
Active duty, reserves, and national guard service members, as well as some surviving spouses, are eligible for VA home loans. In order to apply for a VA-backed loan through a lender, the applicant must obtain a certificate of eligibility (COE) from the VA. Your lender may also be able to obtain a COE for you. Common eligibility requirements are:
– Active duty – the service member has served 90 consecutive days during wartime or 181 days during peacetime
– National Guard & Reserves – the service member has either served 6 years or 90 days of consecutive active duty service
– Surviving spouses – the veteran is missing in action (MIA), is a prisoner of war (POW), died from a service-connected disability and you are not remarried, or died while totally disabled
VA Loan Benefits
A key benefit of a VA loan is the ability to obtain a home loan without being required to make a down payment. Securing a VA loan also means the borrower does not have to purchase private mortgage insurance. VA loans largely have lower interest rates, limited buyers’ cost at closing, no prepayment penalties, and refinancing options.