Buying a House with the ease of the Veteran Loan Program

Veterans loan rates

In recent years, many Veterans and service members have overlooked a truly viable and indispensable VA benefit, the VA Loan program. This flexible, government-backed Veteran Loan program allows homeownership to those that otherwise would have found purchasing a home difficult. This program has been available since its first introduction and passing of the GI Bill in 1944. Among other services to military members and their families, the GI Bill also offered a Loan guaranty for military homeowners; however, many Veterans do not take advantage of this important piece due to insufficient information. We owe our servicemen and women who have bravely and courageously served our country the opportunity to purchase a home of their own with Federal Government support and guaranty.

For those seeking to qualify for a VA Loan, a Veteran or military service member must have:

  • served 181 days during peacetime;
  • 90 days during wartime even before the GI Bill passing; or
  • six years in the Reserves or National Guard.

Many of our military men and women have not sought the Veteran Loan program over the years even though they would qualify for this benefit. However, the VA Home Loan program has helped over 22 million veterans achieve their dream: homeownership. For those still wary about pursuing a VA Home Loan, there are many reasons to push you towards this path.

Benefits of VA Veteran Home Loan Program

  1. No down payment: Since the housing crash, VA Loans have been the safest loan on the market. With no down payment, Veterans can pursue 100% financing.
  2. Faster closing times that equal or exceed that of a conventional loan: Both VA and conventional loans closed, on average, in 44 days.
  3. More lenient with credit scores: Typically, conventional loan creditors require a FICO score of 680-720; however, VA lenders will accept a lower score of 620 as military members find it difficult to establish good credit due to their constant movement.
  4. Veterans and active military can recover faster following a bankruptcy, foreclosure, or short sale: With clean credit, you can apply for a VA Loan again:
    • Two years after a Chapter 7 bankruptcy;
    • One year after a Chapter 13 bankruptcy;
    • Two years after foreclosure; and
    • Based on the lender, some do not require a waiting period following a short sale.
  5. Loan Guaranty Service: Loan Guaranty employees track all VA Loans and notified if a Veteran becomes more than 60 days behind on their mortgage. These employees are there to assist Veterans in finding alternatives to foreclosure.
  6. Lifetime benefit: Once qualified, Veterans and service members can take advantage of the Veteran Loan program throughout their lifetime. You can have more than one active VA Loan at the same time. Knowing that once qualified, Veterans have more opportunities to purchase again later in life.
  7. Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH): Military members are allowed to use their BAH as effective income and are able to use this income towards payment of all or some of your monthly mortgage.

Texas Veteran Housing Assistance Program

In addition to the VA Home Loan program, Texas offers the Texas Veteran Housing Assistance Program and is sponsored by the Texas Veteran Land Board. This program offers some additional benefits beyond the VA Home Loan program.

  • Slightly better interest rates for Veterans purchasing a home in Texas;
  • Home loan amounts up to $424,100;
  • These loans can be underwritten as a VA Loan, conventional, or FHA Loan; and
  • Texas Loans are only open to those Veterans living and purchasing a home in Texas.

If you know of a Veteran or military service member looking to purchase a home, make sure they do their research on Veteran Loan programs. These loans are the most powerful buying tool for service members and one they should not overlook in their homeownership journey.

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