More than 1.2 million homes were bought with VA loans in 2019 — one of the highest numbers since the inception of this program in 1944.
Purchasing a home with your hard-earned VA mortgage benefits can be an incredibly rewarding experience. But are you ready to take the plunge?
Here’s what you need to know.
Benefits of VA Home Loans
VA home loans are government-backed loans that have more forgiving and flexible requirements than other types of loans. Some of the benefits include not having to pay for mortgage insurance and being able to take out a home loan with zero down. Thus, many service members prefer buying a home with a VA loan if possible.
Tips for Buying a Home with a VA Loan
If you want to buy a home with a VA loan, you need to have all of your ducks in a row. Here are some tips that can help you prepare for the process.
Obtaining a Certificate of Eligibility (COE)
You don’t need a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) in hand to begin the VA home loan application process. Your lender can help with this process. However, they may ask you to provide some information like your social security number.
Know Your Credit Report
Your credit history will be very important for your VA home loan application. Of course, you don’t need perfect credit to apply for a VA loan. However, a higher score will help you get a better rate.
There are many apps that you can use to figure out your credit score. Many banks will also provide a credit score report to their customers for free. Keep in mind, the number you see on an app may be slightly different from the score your lender sees when they pull your report.
Understand Occupancy Requirements
VA loans have occupancy requirements and it’s important to be aware of them. You are expected to occupy the house as your main place of residence within 60 days of closing.
Of course, this can be challenging for military members that are deployed or stationed overseas. The good news is, in these cases, the VA does make exceptions.
Keep Your Credit Clean
When buying a home with a VA loan, it’s important to stay vigilant with your finances. Lenders will meticulously assess your financial documents and bank statements. Moving a considerable amount of money into or out of your accounts can lead to problems.
Don’t take on new debt during the mortgage approval process. This can have an impact on your credit score and abruptly get you disqualified. Be cautious about how you spend your money and don’t take out any new credit cards or car loans.
When buying a home with a VA loan, keep the tips mentioned above in mind. Work with your lender to understand what’s required of you and avoid making any errors that can prevent your loan from being approved. Buying a home requires some effort, but it will all be worth it in the end!
Get in Touch
If you are interested in applying for a VA loan, please do not hesitate to reach out. Call our office to get in touch with one of our experienced loan officers today!