When you decide to use a VA Loan, you may be excited about the prospect…
The VA Loan is backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs and helps servicemembers, Veterans, and family members in certain circumstances purchase a home without a down payment.
Most Veterans are eligible to use the VA Loan. There are some time-in-service requirements, which vary depending on when you served. Your type of discharge also impacts your eligibility.
Veterans who served after August 2, 1990
Generally, Veterans who served 24 months of consecutive service can use the VA loan. If you were discharged due to hardship or reduction in force, that time requirement goes down to 90 days. If you were discharged due to a service-connected disability, the time requirement is completely waived.
National Guard members and Reservists can also use the VA Loan as long as they served the full period that they were activated and it was at least 90 days.
Veterans who served between September 8, 1980 and August 1, 1990
The time requirement is the same for Veterans serving during this period. However, for those that were activated while in the National Guard or Reserves or discharged due to hardship or reduction in force need to have served at least 181 days. Those who were discharged due to a service-connected disability do not need to have served a minimum amount of time.
Veterans who served prior to September 8, 1980
Veterans who served during wartime and conflicts, including the Vietnam War, Korean War, and World War II, have lower time on active duty requirements than those who served between these periods. In most cases, they need to serve at least 90 consecutive days, less if they were discharged due to a service-connected disability. For Veterans who served in between these conflicts, the time requirement increases to 181 days.
To show that you can use a VA Loan, you will need to get a Certificate of Eligibility, or COE, from the Department of Veterans Affairs. Lenders with experience with VA Loans can walk you through the process and even submit the paperwork on your behalf with your permission.