- VA Loan:
Designed to offer long-term financing to American veterans, VA mortgage loans are issued by federally qualified lenders and are guaranteed by the U.S. Veterans Administration. The VA determines eligibility and issues a certificate to qualifying applicants to submit to their mortgage lender of choice. It is generally easier to qualify for a VA loan than conventional loans.
Here's how it works:
- 100% financing without private mortgage insurance or 20% second mortgage.
- A VA funding fee of 0 to 3.3% (this fee may be financed) of the loan amount is paid to the VA.
- When purchasing a home, veterans may borrow up to 100% of the sales price or reasonable value of the home, whichever is less.
- When refinancing a home, veterans may borrow up to 90% of reasonable value in order to refinance where state law allows.
Click video below to meet your Sacramento/Roseville/Lincoln VA Loan and Realtor partners!
VA minimum credit score requirement
Envoy Mortgage has a minimum 620 credit score requirement – Over 2/3 of those that apply to not qualify the first time. However, we have a proven system of improving your credit score so don't get discouraged if you're under 620!
Determining VA eligibility
Eligibility is the veteran’s entitlement to VA home loan benefits under the law, based on military service. Eligibility is determined by reviewing the VA Form 26-8320 Certificate Of Eligibility (COE) for loan guaranty benefits. The form is 26-8320a for Reserves or National Guard. If applicant does not already have a (COE) submit form 26-1880 (Request for COE) CLICK HERE FOR VA Form 26-1880
A veteran is eligible if he or she served on active duty in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard after September 15, 1940, and was discharged under conditions other than dishonorable after either:
- 90 days or more, any part of which occurred during wartime, or
- 181 continuous days or more (peacetime).
2 Year Requirement: A greater length of service is required for veterans who
- Enlisted (and service began) after September 7, 1980, or
- Entered service as an officer after October 16, 1981.
These veterans must have completed either
- 24 continuous months of active duty, or
- The full period for which called or ordered to active duty, but not less than 90
days (any part during wartime) or 181 continuous days (peacetime).
Chapter 7 bankruptcy
There must be a minimum of two years since the discharge date of the borrower and / or spouse, not the filing date. You are required to provide an explanation of the bankruptcy. You must also re-establish good credit, financially qualify and have job stability.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy
You can still qualify for a VA loan in during a chapter 13 if the payments to the court have been made on time for one year. The court trustee must agree to and give written approval. You are required to provide an explanation of the bankruptcy and you must also re-establish good credit, financially qualify and have job stability.
Does NOT mean you can’t qualify. We can use “alternative credit” such as a satisfactory payment history on rent, utilities, phone bills, etc. Some best practices are to always pay by check out of a checking account and keep good records. If you are married, make sure to have the utilities in both names to ensure proper credit for good payment history.
A borrower whose previous residence or other real property was foreclosed on or given a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure within the previous two years since the disposition date is generally not eligible for a VA insured mortgage. If the foreclosure was on a VA loan, the applicant may not have full entitlement available for the new loan.
There are currently no guidelines for obtaining a home after a short sale even a recent one however there is a requirement that there be no more than one late mortgage payment within the past 12 months. So in the event that late payments were made and the house was sold through a short sale, you will have to wait until 11 months pass and you have only 1 late mortgage payment within the past 12. You still need the minimum 620 credit score. Make sure to check out my VA Credit Page for more information on credit repair and lots of helpful advice.
Although VA loans are 100% financing there is a “guaranty” or a “funding” fee (unless 30% or more disabled.) The fee is determined by whether or not its a first time or subsequent use, and or level of disability.
Must Occupy as Principle Residence
The veteran must certify that he or she intends to personally occupy the property as his or her home.
Can not buy land without the intention of building a home through a construction loan
Can not buy a home for an investment property/rental
No down payment is required by VA unless the purchase price
exceeds the reasonable value of the property, or the loan is a
Any other party, including the seller, can pay any costs on behalf of the veteran. This means you can truly buy a house with no money out of pocket because even your “good faith deposit” can be refunded at the settlement table.
Maximum Loan Amount
The maximum loan amount is determined by two factors
1. The VA loan limit for your county – Click here for the VA loan limits for California counties.
2. Appraisal of the home – You can not borrow more than the appraised value even though you may be approved for a higher loan amount. You are can not receive “cash back” at the settlement table however you can receive a refund of money’s spent up front to obtain the loan i.e. appraisal or home inspection inspection fees.