What are the requirements for a VA loan?

A VA loan is a mortgage loan program offered to eligible veterans, active-duty service members, and select military spouses by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). To qualify for a VA loan, you need to meet certain requirements. 

Here are the key criteria:

Eligibility: You must meet the VA’s eligibility requirements, which typically include:

a. Active-duty service members: Generally, you need to serve for at least 90 consecutive days during wartime or 181 days during peacetime. 

b. Veterans: You must have been discharged under conditions other than dishonorable after completing the required service period. 

c. National Guard or Reserve members: You may be eligible if you have completed at least six years of service and have been honorably discharged, placed on the retired list, or transferred to the Standby Reserve or an element of the Ready Reserve. 

d. Military spouses: Certain surviving spouses of service members who died in the line of duty or due to a service-related disability may be eligible.

  • Certificate of Eligibility (COE): You need to obtain a valid Certificate of Eligibility from the VA. This document verifies your eligibility for a VA loan and can be obtained through the VA directly or with the assistance of a lender.
  • Occupancy: You must intend to use the property as your primary residence. VA loans are not available for investment properties or vacation homes.
  • Creditworthiness: While the VA does not have a strict minimum credit score requirement, lenders typically establish their own criteria. Generally, a higher credit score improves your chances of loan approval and may offer more favorable terms.
  • Income and Debt-to-Income Ratio (DTI): You need to demonstrate sufficient income to cover the loan payments and meet the VA’s residual income guidelines. Lenders also assess your DTI, which compares your monthly debt obligations to your gross monthly income. Generally, a lower DTI is favorable.
  • Property Requirements: The property you intend to purchase with a VA loan must meet certain standards set by the VA. These requirements ensure the property is safe, structurally sound, and suitable for habitation.

It’s important to note that while these are the general requirements, specific lenders may have additional criteria or overlays. Consulting with a VA-approved lender will provide you with the most accurate information based on your circumstances.

If you are looking to buy/sell or information on unit resources, check out out our Military Map below. 

Military Move Network Map

Click here to access our PCS Map

Our military map has lots of resources for every military base within the United States including schools, base housing, colleges, Facebook groups, and connections to local real estate agents that are military affiliated and provide OUR credit

You may also like

Share Your Thoughts