Buying a home is likely to be one of the biggest purchases of your lifetime. Not only is it important to choose a property in a desired neighborhood and with desirable features, but it’s also necessary to consider the finances of the purchase. As an added perk for those who have served in the military, our government offers VA home loans. While understanding the terms of mortgage assistance for veterans can be tricky, there are a few simple things to remember.
No Down Payment
With a VA loan, there is usually no down payment requirement on a new purchase loan. This can make mortgage offers for veterans easier to qualify for since you don’t have to prove that you have a 20% down payment available in cash at the time of the closing.
VA Loans Are Through Private Lenders
The VA doesn’t directly provide the money to you. In fact, VA loans are offered through private lenders that are guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. This guarantee allows the lender to offer lower interest rates to members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their family members.
If you’re a spouse of a member of the military who died on active duty, you may qualify for mortgage assistance through the VA. Active duty members of the Armed Forces typically become eligible for these mortgage offers after 90 days of wartime service. Members of the reserves and National Guard are eligible after six years. If you get called to active duty during peacetime, you could be eligible after 181 days of service.
No Mortgage Insurance Requirement
With conventional and FHA loans, lenders typically require mortgage insurance if you pay less than 20% down. This is not the case with VA home loans. There is no mortgage insurance requirement.
Veterans may be eligible for mortgage assistance two years after bankruptcy or foreclosure. Most lenders require a minimum credit score of 620 for VA home loans. Since this is lower than many conventional lenders, it’s easier for veterans to qualify.