When purchasing a home with a loan, buyers have the option to use one of a few mortgage products to finance their purchase. The VA loan allows military service members, Veterans, and spouses in some cases to finance their mortgage with a 0% down payment.
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See if you are eligible for a VA Loan.
VA home loans are mortgages for veterans, active-duty military members, and their surviving spouses. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) guarantees the loan, which allows lenders to offer lower rates and fewer fees. The VA loan process can be intimidating for new home buyers, so we’ve put together a comprehensive guide with easy-to-understand language, callouts, and tips to walk you through the loan process from start to finish. If you are considering buying a new home and want to take advantage of VA mortgage lending in Pittsburgh, follow these steps.
Choose the Right Type of VA Loan
VA loans are a fantastic option for many people. The VA loan process is streamlined and straightforward, which makes it an accessible option for anyone who has served in the military. But there are a few different types of VA loans that you’ll need to consider, including:
- VA Purchase Loans: used to purchase a new home with $0 down
- VA Rehab Loans: allows borrowers to include the cost of repairs and improvements in their loan amount
- VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan (IRRRL): low-cost refinancing loan for veterans who already have a VA loan
- VA Cash-Out Refinance: allows homeowners to refinance their loans and borrow cash from their home’s equity
- VA Energy Efficient Mortgage: an add-on to a home purchase or refinancing that lets veterans borrow extra money to improve the energy efficiency of their homes
Work with one of the best mortgage companies in PA for help choosing the right loan product for your needs.
Find a VA-Approved Lender
Not every mortgage provider can originate VA loans. VA mortgage companies in PA must be approved by the US Department of Veterans Affairs. Approval means they follow all VA regulations, including rules on treating borrowers fairly and honestly. Before choosing a lender, check out all their offerings and specialties to ensure they have the experience needed for a speedy loan process.
Pre-approval means that a lender has determined that based on your current financial situation, you have enough income and assets (including down payment) to qualify for a mortgage. Getting pre-approved for a VA loan is extremely important. It will give you a better idea of your options and how much house you can afford.
Getting pre-approved also gives you an advantage over other buyers because it shows sellers that you are serious about getting a house and that you already have the funds secured for the purchase. When it’s time to submit your offer on a home, having proof of approval gives sellers more confidence that they won’t get stuck with an unqualified buyer who isn’t ready to move forward with the purchase process.
Go House Hunting
The next step is to find your new home. You’ll want to consider factors like location, size, and price. It’s crucial to keep in mind that your prospective home must meet specific guidelines to qualify for a VA loan. These mortgages can only be used to purchase a primary residence where you intend to live full-time. Veterans can purchase multi-unit properties (up to four apartments) if they plan to live in one of the units. Additionally, the home must generally be in good shape and be able to pass the VA appraisal process. When you’ve found a property that fits your needs, you can then make an offer and, once accepted by the seller, get under contract.
Lender Processes the Application and Ordering a VA Appraisal
Once the home is under contract, your loan application can be processed. With the contract in hand, the lender will order a VA appraisal. The appraiser will ensure the home meets VA minimum property requirements and that the price you’ve agreed to pay matches the current value. You’ll also need to obtain a home inspection. While waiting for the appraisal documents, you can work with your lender to provide the necessary documents to process the application fully. The underwriter will approve the purchase if the home passes the appraisal and inspection.
Close on the Loan and Move in
Now you can begin the closing proceedings. You’ll sign all the essential documents to agree to the loan terms and pay any required closing costs. Once you’ve signed the documents, you can finally pick up the keys to your new home. Then it’s time for the fun part: moving in!
Buying a home is a big decision, and it’s one that you’ll want to make sure you’re fully prepared for. If you want to purchase a new home with a VA loan, work with one of the most experienced mortgage companies in PA and follow the steps above to ensure everything goes smoothly and without surprises. Are you ready to get started? Contact us to learn more about working with VA rehab loan lenders or get a pre-approval today!