Basic Eligibility Requirements for a VA Loan.
To use the VA loan, you must meet ONE of the following requirements.
- I have served at least 90 consecutive days of active duty military service during wartime.
- I have served at least 180 consecutive days of active duty military service during peacetime.
- I have served at least 6 years of service in the National Guard or Reserves.
- I am the surviving spouse of a military service member who died in the line of duty or as a result of a service-related disability.
Obtaining a Certificate of Eligibility
One of the first steps to using your VA loan entitlement is demonstrating your eligibility to your lender. This is done through obtaining a Certificate of Eligibility, or COE, from the Department of Veterans Affairs.
The COE is not required when applying for a VA loan but will be necessary to get during the loan process. Oftentimes, your lender can request the COE on your behalf with your permission.
To get your COE, you can:
- Apply through the mail with VA Form 26-1880
- Apply online at the VA’s eBenefits website
- Apply through your lender