The Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944, better known as the G.I. Bill, has long been considered one of the great legislative successes of the past century. By providing benefits to those who served our country, the bill not only assisted millions of individuals, it helped spur on a post-war economy and establish an American middle class. More than seven decades later, one such benefit is still proving fruitful: the VA home loan. These loans help provide the more than 17 million active and retired military personnel with housing.
If you’re an eligible service member, a VA loan can be just want you need to start the next chapter of your life. Here’s everything you need to know.
What is a VA home loan?
A VA loan is a mortgage backed by the United States Department of Veteran Affairs. It is eligible to men and women who have or are presently serving in the United States military. Members of the Reserve or National Guard are also eligible.
While the VA does not distribute the loans, it does set eligibility requirements and financially guarantees loans that qualify under the program. Qualified third-party lenders issue the loans and a AAA mortgage specialist can guide you through the program.
How does a VA loan compare to a traditional mortgage?
The are several financial benefits of a VA home loan that make it easier for a member of the military to purchase a home. Most notably is that VA loans require no down payment. Considering the fact that saving for a down payment can be a huge hurdle in the house-buying process, this can significantly speed up the process of getting into a new home.
Interest rates on VA loans are also usually lower than traditional mortgages, and no private mortgage insurance is required. This will help keep monthly payments low.
How do I get a VA loan?
If you believe you are eligible for a VA loan, you’ll first want to head to the VA website to ensure you meet all the requirements. You may even be surprised to find you are eligible when you thought you weren’t. For example, if you didn’t reach the minimum service requirement, you may still be eligible if your discharge was for a reason such as a reduction of force or certain medical condition.
You’ll then need to get a certificate of eligibility. You can receive one directly from the VA or your lender can request it on your behalf.
Once you’re ready to apply, contact a AAA mortgage specialist who can walk you through the application process step by step and get you on your way to home ownership.
AAA’s VA loans offer flexible credit guidelines and acceptance of lower credit scores than most loan programs. To learn more about the program or to speak to a mortgage specialist now, visit AAA.com.