How Do I Qualify for a VA Home Loan?

Tuesday, January 31, 2017  

how to qualify for a VA home loan

VA home loans can be used to buy a house or a condominium, purchase and renovate a home, or build a new home, with no down payment required in many circumstances.

To be eligible for a VA home loan, veterans, active duty service members, National Guard members and reservists must meet the basic service requirements as stipulated by the Department of Veterans Affairs, including but not limited to an honorable discharge. Spouses of military members who died while on active duty or as a result of a service-connected disability may also be eligible.

Step 1: Do you meet one or more of the following conditions?

  • You have served 90 consecutive days of active service during wartime, OR

  • You have served 181 days of active service during peacetime, OR

  • You are currently on active duty and have served 90 consecutive days of active service, OR

  • You have more than 6 years of service in the National Guard or Selected Reserves, OR

Click here to view the service requirements for each wartime and peacetime period:

  • You are the unremarried spouse of a Veteran who died while in service or from a service connected disability, OR

  • You are the spouse of a Servicemember missing in action or a prisoner of war, OR

  • You are a surviving spouse who remarries on or after attaining age 57, and on or after December 16, 2003, OR

  • You are the surviving spouse of certain totally disabled veterans whose disability may not have been the cause of death.

Step 2: Obtaining your Certificate of Eligibility (COE)

The Certificate of Eligibility verifies that your length and character of service make you eligible to use the VA home loan benefit. While you don't need your COE to pre-qualify for a home loan with Starkey Mortgage, the certificate is required for the loan application.

VA loan applicants can provide their evidence of eligibility to a Starkey Mortgage loan officer to obtain the COE or they can fill out a Certificate of Eligibility (VA Form 26-1880) online.

Click here to obtain the evidence the US Department of Veterans Affairs requires to demonstrate your eligibility.

Step 3: VA loan income requirements

Veteran and active duty service members wanting to apply for a VA home loan are not required to earn a specific income amount, however borrowers are expected to have stable, reliable income that will cover their monthly household expenses, including food, utilities, transportation, other loans, credit card payment, and their new mortgage payment.

Step 4: VA loan credit requirements

Starkey Mortgage requires a minimum credit score of 580 for the applicant on a VA loan. If you’re not sure of your credit score, read our Credit Score Tips to learn how to obtain your credit report and the factors that determine your credit score.

Did you meet all of the qualifications for a VA loan? Contact a Starkey Mortgage loan officer in your state to begin your VA home loan application.

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