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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 7/26/2020

Photo by Oleg Magni from Pexels

The VA home loan program allows qualified veterans and active-duty members of the military to get an affordable home loan with a minimal down payment. If you're planning to use this loan program, you can take specific measures to improve your chances of approval. These tips will take you from house hunting to homeownership quickly with an affordable VA home loan.

1. Get Your Certificate of Eligibility

The Certificate of Eligibility (COE) shows your lender that you are approved for the program. If you get this document before you apply for the loan, you'll know whether or not you qualify. You can request the COE from the VA through the eBenefits portal or in person at the VA Regional Loan Center.

2. Check Your Credit

One of the benefits of the VA home loan program is the fact that it has less stringent credit requirements than other loan types, but that doesn't mean your credit has no role to play. Your credit rating directly impacts the interest rate on your VA loan, and if your credit is too low, you may not get approved. Check your credit, and if needed, make changes to raise your score.

3. Establish Reliable Income

Even with the VA home loan program behind you, a lender is not going to loan you money if you don't have a reliable, stable income. Most lenders want to see that you have held a job with enough income to cover your payments for at least two years. If you have recently changed jobs, ask your lender what you need to show to prove your reliability as an employee.

4. Choose the Right Agent

Not all agents are well-versed in the VA home loan program. There are some quirks to VA loan approval that can put roadblocks in place as you look for a home. For instance, the VA has specific property requirements that the home must meet for the loan to be approved, and the appraisal process is a bit more stringent than traditional loans. Working with an agent that is VA-savvy will help speed up the process and make loan approval on the house you love easier to get.

5. Choose the Right Lender

A VA home loan doesn't come from the VA, but rather from a lender that partners with the VA. You can take some time to shop for the most affordable option, as long as you shop with lenders who participate in the VA home loan program. Remember, closing costs and fees may vary from one lender to the next, so find the one that offers the best terms for your situation.

The VA home loan benefit never expires, and you can use it again and again. As long as the mortgage money goes toward a home you're going to live in, not an investment property, you can buy a home with zero down and a fair interest rate using this benefit. With these tips, you can get the best possible loan funded quickly.





Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 6/11/2017

Do you dream about owning your own house? Has the idea of living in a property that adds to your personal equity started to appeal to you? If so, you're in good company. Each year, millions of Americans buy a house. Many of these homes are purchased with a home loan.

How you could get the right home loan

To protect themselves against loan defaults, lenders prefer to work with borrowers who have a history of being financially responsible. Doing so helps more than lenders.It can keep an entire economy from contracting, similar to the debacle that happened to cause the Great Recession.

Knowing what lenders look for in borrowers can help you to secure a home loan. To begin,your credit history is going to get reviewed while you're trying to secure a home loan. The amount of debt that you have and your history of making minimum or higher payments on these debts is going to be reviewed.

Your income, including income from second jobs that you work, and your spouse's income will also get looked into. Landing a higher paying job helps when it comes to securing a home loan. But, don't just increase your income.

Take advantage of military home loans if you served the country as a service member.If you work for a bank, you could get lower interest rates. Check with your employer to see how much you could save. If you don't work for a bank, consider securing a home loan through your current bank.

Opt for lower monthly mortgage payments

It could improve your chances of getting approved for a mortgage. It could also help you to save on interest payments. In addition to choosing a mortgage that has a lower interest rate, to secure a home loan:

Go after home loans that require lower monthly mortgage payments. Lower interest rates and military home loans are just two ways to achieve this. Applying for a home loan when the economy is recovering is another path to lower monthly mortgage payments. After feds start raising interest rates and the economy becomes stronger, mortgages generally rise.

Pay off as much debt as possible before you apply for a home loan. For example, you could pay off your auto loans and furniture. You can also pay off personal loans that you took out before you apply for a  mortgage.

Increase your liquidity. You can do this by investing more in stocks, cash savings and bonds. The value of your current home can also improve your liquidity. The value of a business that you own is another way to improve liquidity.

Get financial statements together to present to a lender. Items to get include income tax returns, pay stubs, investment account statements and business income, if you own a business. This includes an at home business. Also, get exiting loans and other debts together to present to lenders. The amount and type of debt may be sufficient, depending on the lender that you work with.




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Jill Finkelstein