VA Loans Insider Page 2

  • Can VA Buyers Borrow More Than a Home Is Worth?

    Can VA Buyers Borrow More Than a Home Is Worth?

    It's tough to find a home in mint condition, unless you're buying sparkling, brand new construction. There's often a host of upgrades, fixes or improvements that prospective homebuyers envision making once that property is all theirs. Many first-time homebuyers expect to be able to build the cost of those improvements and upgrades into their new home loan. Unfortunately, making that work in practice is tough with …

  • Explaining VA Entitlement: What You've Earned and Why It's Important

    Explaining VA Entitlement: What You’ve Earned and Why It’s Important

    The concept of VA entitlement is often a confusing one. You can think of it as something you're entitled to given your service to our nation. This is certainly a hard-earned and well-deserved benefit. But that's not what it really means, at least in practical terms. Veterans who are eligible for a VA loan have an entitlement, which is basically a dollar amount the VA promises to repay back to a lender in the ev…

  • 5 Things That Can Hamper Your VA Loan

    5 Things That Can Hamper Your VA Loan

    Despite the reams of documents and sophisticated computer programs, home lending is ultimately a business comprised of human beings. That means there’s always a chance for something to go wrong, even though the VA loan process isn’t more difficult than any other loan type. In fact, VA loans continue to be more likely to close than their conventional counterparts. Simple mistakes, oversights and paperwo…

  • Explaining the VA’s Standard for Debt-to-Income Ratio

    Explaining the VA’s Standard for Debt-to-Income Ratio

    When applying for a VA home loan, borrowers hear a lot about something called debt-to-income ratio. Debt-to-income ratio (DTI) is an underwriting guideline that compares a borrower’s monthly debt payments to gross monthly income and helps lenders determine if you meet VA loan qualifications. VA lenders look for a DTI of 41 percent but evaluate it a bit differently than the other major lending avenues (FHA, U…

  • Restoration of Entitlement: How to Reuse Your VA Loan Benefit in Full

    Restoration of Entitlement: How to Reuse Your VA Loan Benefit in Full

    VA entitlement is a financial guaranty from the government, which pledges to repay a portion of your home mortgage in the event of default. Your VA entitlement is a specific dollar amount. Veterans and service members using the VA loan benefit for the first time have their full VA loan entitlement available, which allows qualified buyers in most of the country to borrow up to $453,100 before having to make a down …

  • A Closer Look at VA Jumbo Loans

    A Closer Look at VA Jumbo Loans

    VA jumbo loans offer veterans and military buyers significant benefits, especially compared to the conventional jumbo landscape. First, let’s define “jumbo.” Regardless of the VA’s county limit, anytime a veteran wants a loan greater than $424,100, they’re likely looking at a jumbo mortgage loan. That figure represents the “conforming” loan limit for conventional loans, and it’s also the current VA…

  • Explaining VA Loan Residual Income Guidelines

    Explaining VA Loan Residual Income Guidelines

    The VA’s residual income guideline offers a powerful and realistic way to look at affordability and whether new homeowners have enough income to cover living expenses and stay current on their mortgage. Residual income is a major reason why VA loans have such a low foreclosure rate, despite the fact that about 9 in 10 people purchase without a down payment. The heart of this is discretionary income. Residual …

  • Using a VA Loan for Manufactured or Modular Housing

    Using a VA Loan for Manufactured or Modular Housing

    Out of the gate, it's incredibly important to make this distinction: Modular homes and manufactured homes are not the same thing, at least as far as the VA home loan program is concerned. The VA loan offers many advantages that make homebuying easier and less expensive for veterans. Regardless of the home you choose, now is the time to get started on your VA home loan application. Manufactured homes are mobile …

  • VA Termite Inspections By State

    VA Termite Inspections By State

    The VA home loan program is focused on getting service members, veterans and military families into "move-in ready" homes that are safe, sound and sanitary. It's not as flashy, but we could also add "termite-free" to that list. VA  loan rules state that a wood-destroying pest inspection is required in certain parts of the country or in low-rise and high-rise condo units when the VA appraiser observes a poten…

  • Can I Have Bad Credit and Still Get a VA Home Loan?

    Can I Have Bad Credit and Still Get a VA Home Loan?

    This post was inspired by VA Loans Insider reader Mary Ann Parker, who asked about securing VA financing with less than perfect credit. In fact, one of the most common questions we receive is: Can I get a VA loan with bad credit? The answer isn't black-and-white, in part because there's no clear-cut definition of what "bad credit" actually means. For VA loans, borrowers will often need a FICO credit score of at le…