As the military community gears up for PCS Season, many service members and their families may be considering purchasing their first home. The VA Loan is a wonderful advantage afforded to military, and many base communities are filled with resources that can help you get the most out of your VA Loan. Ellen Hough, a Broker at EXIT Independence Realty in Jacksonville, NC put together this blog post for SargesList, which details a few of the things she finds many of her clients don’t know prior to using their VA Loan.
Tips for using a VA Loan
- First, know that the VA does not actually lend you money for your home.¬† The VA merely guarantees your loan.¬† That means that, unlike the average civilian buyer, a service member or veteran does not have to put 20 percent or more down to purchase a home.
- Typically all the cash a veteran needs to come up with is an Earnest Money Deposit (EMD), the cost of the Home Inspection, and any other inspections that might be needed plus the cost of the VA Appraisal.¬† If they have an experienced, knowledgeable realtor representing them, they can usually get some, if not all, of the their money back at the closing table so long as their Mortgage Lender can ‚Äúsource‚Äù the funds.¬† Do not not pay cash for anything; always use a personal check or cashiers check. The Mortgage Lender needs to be able to track all monies.
- Please be sure you are working with a qualified Mortgage Lender. Please do not go to a Mortgage Company just because “VA” happens to be in their name. I have found they usually do not really know how to process a VA loan, but rather they are just trying to capitalize on the “VA” name.
- My best advice is to use a local lender – someone that you can actually meet with face-to-face. There are few worse feelings than having a question you desperately need answered go ignored by a Mortgage Lender who chooses to not return any of your phone calls, emails or texts.
- Any Mortgage Lender that is working in a military town will likely know how to process a VA loan because that is their ‚Äúbread & butter.‚Äù Word of mouth is the best advertisement for any business, so ask some of your friends who they worked with, search on the internet for reviews for lenders, etc.¬† Do your research and if something sounds too good to be true, it just might be.
Looking for a home in the Jacksonville, NC area? Contact Ellen:
Ellen Hough,¬†Jacksonville NC Real Estate¬†, specializing in guiding home buyers and sellers through the home buying and selling process.
Ellen Hough, Broker, ABR, e-PRO, ASP, CSSS, CRS
EXIT Independence Realty