Chapter 4: Consider using a Real Estate agent

A great real estate agent who understands the power of VA loans can make all the difference for military borrowers. These experienced advocates can help you navigate -- and the get the most from -- what’s likely to be the largest purchase of your life. They also do it free of charge for homebuyers. Sellers generally pay a real estate agent’s commission from the sale proceeds.

Chapter 4 also takes readers inside the VA appraisal process, which puts a premium on the health and safety of veterans and their families. This is an essential part of the loan process, and in some cases it can make or break your homebuying plan.

About 80% of homebuyers use a real estate agent. Chapter 4 explains the major benefits behind using an agent and covers

  • Key questions when evaluating an agent
  • Whether you should start with a lender or a real estate agent
  • How to find agents who understand and work with military borrowers

Chapter 5: How loan interest rates work

VA loans typically have lower rates than conventional financing. Borrowers with a 620 score can get rates comparable to what a conventional borrower with a credit score well into the 700s might obtain. But the better your credit score, the better your interest rate, no matter the loan program.

Chapter 5 also spells out some of the costs and fees associated with your VA loan. Closing costs can include:

  • A lender’s origination fee
  • Appraisal fees
  • Title insurance
  • VA Funding Fee

The VA limits what veterans can pay in closing costs, and sellers often cover most or all of these at the closing table. The one fee veterans are almost always on the hook for -- the VA Funding Fee -- can be financed into the loan.

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