Are you a veteran, an active duty service member with a certificate of eligibility (COE), or the surviving spouse of a deceased, MIA, or POW soldier? You may be eligible for a VA home loan.
What is a VA Loan?
A VA loan is backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs, which makes it possible for veterans to get a home loan with a low down payment or even no down payment at all, even if you don’t have a perfect credit score.
VA loans can be either a fixed-rate or an adjustable-rate mortgage, and can be applied for through a reputable and experienced mortgage lender, who will coordinate with Veterans Affairs to establish your eligibility and secure the loan.
Qualifying For a VA Loan
The following people may be able to qualify for a VA loan:
- Former or active Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines, National Guard or Reserves service members with a certificate of eligibility (COE)
- Veterans who have met minimum military service requirements according to the Department of Veterans Affairs
- Surviving spouses of eligible soldiers who were veterans or are MIA or POWs
The home you plan on purchasing must be your primary residence. You may also need a certain minimum credit score and have to meet debt-to-income (DTI) ratio requirements (or pass a residual income analysis) to qualify. Depending on your credit score, you may be able to secure a VA loan with a low down payment or even no down payment at all.
Benefits of VA Loans
You can get a VA backed loan as a 30-, 20- & 15-year fixed-rate or have a 5-year fixed rate before changing to an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM). There are also jumbo VA loans available, as the United States Government doesn’t limit the size of VA loans (although private lenders may impose limits.)
You can buy a home with no money down as long as you can afford the mortgage payment. VA loans don’t have a private mortgage insurance (PMI) requirement, so you’ll save money on that in contrast to other low down payment options. You can pay your VA backed mortgage off at any time with no prepayment penalties.
You can access your VA benefits multiple times, refinancing one VA loan into another VA loan to leverage better interest rates, or switch from an ARM to a fixed-rate mortgage. As long as you maintain loan eligibility, you can refinance up to 100% of your primary home’s value as a cash-out refinance.
There is even a VA Streamline Refinance program with a reduced funding fee and flexible documentation requirements – available for veterans currently in VA loans. This can make it easy to refinance without having to go through the entire application and underwriting process again.
VA Loan Funding Fees
The VA funding fee is a one-time payment on a VA home loan. This fee helps to lower the cost of the loan since the VA home loan program doesn’t require large down payments or PMI. You may be exempt from this funding fee under certain circumstances.
VA loans are governed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, but private lenders may impose their own restrictions. If you have a service connected disability, you may be able to access additional programs to help provide funding for accessibility upgrades to the home you eventually purchase.
VA home loans are a great way for veterans to buy a home in any part of the country, since they aren’t subject to conforming loan limits. You’ll be able to house hunt with confidence regardless of property location once you’ve been preapproved to purchase a home and been given your approved budget by your lender.
Apply For VA Loans in WA, OR, CO, ID or CA
Now is a great time for looking into a VA home loan. You can use our free Instant Rate Quote tool and Rate Tracker to find out how much you could be saving every month or over the life of your loan.
Working With Sammamish Mortgage
At Sammamish Mortgage, all of our Loan Officers (LOs) are salaried. This means they always put the client first, making sure you get the best loan for your budget, not the biggest one to earn a commission.
We offer some of the most competitive rates in the nation, and it’s our goal to give you a hassle-free home loan experience. We’re proud to say we close most of our loans in 30 days or less. We offer a wide variety of home loans, including VA loans, so you can start home shopping right away.
For more information on your VA home loan options, feel free to contact us today. We currently lend in all of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Colorado and California and have providing borrowers with mortgage programs since 1992. Our friendly team of experienced mortgage professionals will advise you on which VA loan program best meets your needs.
Are you ready to apply for your home loan and lock in a low interest rate? If so, Sammamish Mortgage can help you get started. Get in touch with us today!