Can I get a VA
refinance on my subprime home loan?
As of this year, the answer to this question is yes. The
Veterans' Benefits Improvement Act of 2008 makes it possible
to refinance subprime loans. Previously there was no authority to refinance such loans, but
there is now. There are numerous changes in federal regulations
to help keep soldiers in their homes and out of deepening debt.
Video: VA Home Loan Assistance
What are the advantages of a VA loan?
First, VA “loans” are not actually loans by the government. What
VA loans are actually loan guarantees given by the VA to a lender. In today’s volatile market, such
a guarantee makes you look lot better to the lender.
The terms of such loans are very favorable to Veterans. First,
VA guaranteed loans are true “no money down” loans. Other loans
try to act as though they are “no down payment” by doing a
second mortgage to cover the down payment. If you have less than
20% of the price to put down, such loans normally require Private Mortgage Insurance, which is fairly pricey. Additionally, you will have two
mortgage payments to deal with, rather than one. Also, you will
wind up paying higher interest rates for your loan(s),
especially the second.
You still have to qualify for a VA loan, but the standards for
qualification are significantly easier to meet than conventional
loans. This means that the credit and income standards are not
as strict, increasing the chances that you will be able to
qualify for the home you want. As an additional benefit, you
usually get a significantly better interest rate on a VA loan
than you could otherwise qualify for.
The limit for certain VA loans has been increased to $407,000
for the time being.
Many mortgages may have prepayment penalties on your note, but
VA loans do not.
How do I qualify for a VA loan?
Although there are a number of parameters, the basic requirement
< http://www.homeloans.va.gov/elig2.htm > is that you have
served on active duty for two years, or have served in certain
conflicts for which you were called up for the full term of your
call-up, so long as it is at least 91 or 181 days, depending on
your particular circumstances.
What are the steps in getting a VA loan?
The steps are fairly simple. First, you need to qualify under
the VA’s more relaxed standards. Second, you need to provide the
required documentation. You need to place a a contract on a
qualifying house (your new home has to meet fairly stringent
physical standards), and then you need to close on the house.
Video: Understanding the VA Home Loan Process
Here are some VA Loan Specialists in several states with
VA Mortgage Center - 800-405-6682
Pacific Shores Realty – 800-400-0000
Safeguard Properties - 800-852-8306
Utah Financial - 801-352-4000
Choice Finance – 888-404-8111
AmeriSouth Mortgage Company – 800-849-2378
Atlanta Mortgage Broker & Lenders – 770-565-7556
Texcorp Mortgage Bankers, Inc. – 800-411-3768