The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers a variety of home loan programs for active duty servicemembers, veterans, and National Guard and Reserve members:
- Purchase Loans help purchase a home at a competitive interest rate often without requiring a downpayment or private mortgage insurance.
- Cash Out Refinance Loans take cash out of your home equity to pay off debt, fund school, or make home improvements.
- Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan can help you obtain a lower interest rate by refinancing an existing VA loan.
- Native American Direct Loans help eligible Native American veterans finance the purchase, construction, or improvement of homes on Federal Trust Land, or reduce the interest rate on a VA loan.
- Adapted Housing Grants help veterans with a permanent and total service-connected disability purchase or build an adapted home or to modify an existing home to account for their disability.
These programs are not one-time benefits - they can be reused.
Learn more about home loans for veterans and servicemembers.
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When you apply for a mortgage, it can sometimes be hard to understand how much of a monthly payment you can afford. Oftentimes you have to factor in additional fees and property taxes that add to the base cost of your monthly payment.
You can’t always rely on a mortgage broker or lender to ensure that you’re getting a responsbile loan that you can afford.
That’s why the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) introduced the Ability-to-Repay rule.
Under the new rule, lenders have to ensure that you can pay back the loan plus interest over the long term.
According to CFPB, in order to do that, lenders will need to verify the following before they can issue you a loan:
- Current income or assets;
- Current employment status;
- Credit history;
- The monthly payment for the mortgage;
- The monthly payments on any other loans associated with the property;
- The monthly payment for other mortgage related obligations (such as property taxes);
- Other debt obligations; and
- The monthly debt-to-income ratio or residual income the borrower would be taking on with the mortgage. (Debt-to-income ratio is a consumer’s total monthly debt divided by their total monthly gross income).
These rules will help protect you from lenders who might try to sell you an irresponsible mortgage that you can’t afford.
Learn more about the Ability-to-Repay rule.