When you decide to use a VA Loan, you may be excited about the prospect…
Yes, you can use your VA Loan while serving on active duty as long as you have meet the minimum service time requirements for eligibility. Many service members use their VA Loan when they get stationed in a place where they want to stay or return to after their military service is over.
To use your VA Loan while on active duty, you have to have served at least 90 consecutive days on active duty. Veterans of past conflicts can have lower time requirements but those currently serving almost always have to satisfy the 90 day requirement. The exception is if you have been discharged due to a service-connected disability. In that case, the rules for Veterans in your circumstances would apply.
It is important to note that the 90 days of service must be consecutive. This means that you can’t have a break in service during that time. Breaks in service may occur if you participate in certain schools or training. For those at the beginning of their service, there may be a period of time when you are waiting to attend basic training but not yet listed on active duty.
Everyone interested in using their VA Loan benefit has to obtain a Certificate of Eligibility, COE, from the Department of Veterans Affairs. Active duty service members need to submit their full name, social security number, date of birth, date that they entered service, periods of lost time, and name of their current command. All of this is verified in a database. Their command can also provide a time-in-service verification letter, which is standard.
Active duty service members have additional resources to help them take advantage of the VA Loan, often in the administrative or human resources departments at their command. There are also likely multiple mentors who have used the VA Loan themselves who can tell you more about the process. Working with a reputable lender is another great way to determine your VA Loan eligibility, since they will be the ones reviewing your loan approval paperwork.