VA Home Loans 101
The VA home loan program is a mortgage loan program established by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to help military veterans and their families obtain home financing. The VA home loan program has a long and rich history, dating back to the end of World War II, when the VA was created to provide assistance to veterans returning from war.
If you’ve served for at least 90 continuous days (all at once, without a break in service), you meet the minimum active-duty service requirement.
Here is a brief history of the VA home loan program
1994: The VA Home Loan Program Expands Eligibility
In 1994, the VA expanded the eligibility for the VA home loan program to include certain categories of surviving spouses of veterans. This change was made in recognition of the sacrifices that surviving spouses had made on behalf of their loved ones who had served in the military.
2000s: The VA Home Loan Program Enters the Digital Age
In the 2000s, the VA home loan program entered the digital age, with the introduction of online applications and the ability to submit documents electronically. This made the process of applying for a VA home loan faster and more convenient for veterans.
2008: The VA Home Loan Program Responds to the Financial Crisis
In 2008, the VA home loan program played a critical role in helping veterans and their families navigate the challenges of the financial crisis. The VA introduced a number of initiatives to help veterans who were facing financial hardship, including the ability to temporarily suspend mortgage payments and the ability to refinance existing VA home loans at lower interest rates.
2010: The VA Home Loan Program Reaches a Milestone
In 2010, the VA home loan program reached a significant milestone, with the number of VA home loans exceeding 20 million. This was a testament to the enduring popularity and effectiveness of the VA home loan program in helping veterans achieve the dream of homeownership.
2011: The VA Home Loan Program Expands Access to Credit
In 2011, the VA home loan program expanded access to credit for veterans by increasing the maximum loan limits for VA home loans. This change made it possible for more veterans to afford homes in high-cost areas of the country.
2014: The VA Home Loan Program Goes Green
In 2014, the VA home loan program embraced the trend towards sustainable living by introducing a program to help veterans finance the construction or rehabilitation of energy-efficient homes. This program, known as the VA Energy Efficient Mortgage (EEM), allowed veterans to borrow additional funds to make energy-efficient improvements to their homes.
2017: The VA Home Loan Program Modernizes Its Appraisal Process
In 2017, the VA home loan program modernized its appraisal process by introducing the VA Automated Valuation Model (AVM). The AVM used advanced algorithms to generate a real-time estimate of a property's value, which helped streamline the VA home loan process and reduce the time it took for veterans to close on their loans.
2018: The VA Home Loan Program Expands Its Reach
In 2018, the VA home loan program expanded its reach by introducing the VA Manufactured Home Loan program. This program allowed veterans to use VA home loan benefits to finance the purchase or construction of a manufactured home.
2020: The VA Home Loan Program Adapts to the COVID-19 Pandemic
In 2020, the VA home loan program had to adapt to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The VA introduced a number of initiatives to help veterans who were impacted by the pandemic, including temporary mortgage payment relief and the ability to refinance existing VA home loans at lower interest rates.
Today, the VA home loan program continues to evolve to meet the changing needs of veterans.
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As a US military veteran, the VA home loan program have helped me and millions of others. Have questions about using your VA home loan program? Let's talk!
What are the minimum service requirements for VA loan benefits?
If you serviced between August 2, 1990, and the present (Gulf War period to present)
You meet the minimum active-duty service requirement if you served for:
At least 24 continuous months, or
The full period (at least 90 days) for which you were called or ordered to active duty, or
At least 90 days if you were discharged for a hardship, or a reduction in force, or
Less than 90 days if you were discharged for a service-connected disability.