The VA home loan program is a great help. With a VA home loan, it is simple for veterans to finance a home than most commercial loan programs, and there is no required down payment and no required private mortgage insurance (PMI) for the loan. Obtain counseling. This isn’t required under the VA Home Loan Program, but its certainly a good idea especially for the first-time home buyer. Pre-purchase counseling gives you information on Housing counseling is usually free. Find a home. Some people love the hunt for a new home; others hate it. But regardless of which camp you fall into, you cant proceed until you find that potential home, sweet home. Make an offer. After you’ve found the place, discuss the purchase with the seller or selling agent. Its perfectly okay to sign a purchase contract at this point, as long as its conditioned on approval of your VA home loan. Select a lender. Finding a lender who participates in the VA Home Loan Program isn’t difficult because virtually all of them do. Its a good idea to shop around to find the best possible terms. Remember, all lenders are not created equal. Obtain a Certificate of Eligibility. To obtain a VA home loan, the VA must first certify that you’re eligible for the program. This is done by issuing a Certificate of Eligibility.
Many lenders can secure this certificate for you, easily and almost instantly, using the Automated Certificate of Eligibility (ACE) system. This Internet-based application can provide eligibility and can issue an online Certificate of Eligibility in a matter of seconds. Not all cases can be processed through ACE only those for which the VA has sufficient data about the applicant in its file. However, be sure to ask your lender about this process because it can save weeks of time. If your lender doesn’t have access to ACE, you can apply for a Certificate of Eligibility by submitting a completed VA Form 26-1880. You can acquire this form from any VA regional center or print it from the. Provide proof of your military service. When applying for a Certificate of Eligibility, you should add proof of your military service along with your request. In some cases it may be possible for the VA to establish eligibility without your proof of service. However, to avoid any possible delays, its best to provide such evidence.
The lender will now request the VA to assign a licensed appraiser to determine the reasonable value for the property. The appraiser will issue a Certificate of Reasonable Value. Although the VA appraiser must view the land from both the exterior and the interior to determine its overall condition, the appraisal process isn’t an inspection of the property. You should hire your own licensed inspector to satisfy yourself that the home you intend to buy is in a condition that is acceptable to you. The VA guarantees only the loan, not the condition of the property. Its your responsibility to be an informed buyer and assure yourself that what you are buying is satisfactory to you in all respects. You may be required to pay for the appraisal unless the seller agrees to pay. However, many lenders grant you to include this fee as part of the loan. Play the waiting game. The lender will let you know the decision on the loan. You should be approved if the homes established value and your credit and income are acceptable. Sometimes it may take longer than you expect for the lender or VA to process your loan application.