2020 VA Loan Benefits
2020 has been a confusing year, to say the least. However, some positives have come out of it too. Especially regarding VA home loans, which at the beginning of the year had some significant changes take place.
These changes came after the Bluewater Act was signed into law by President Donald Trump on June 25th, 2019. This new law brought about changes to VA benefits so that they covered Vietnam War veterans who were exposed to a dangerous chemical referred to as Agent Orange, while on deployment. VA home loans were also changed by the new law as they removed loan limits for first-time borrowers removed, and funding fees changed.
VA Home Loan Changes
The signing of the new law saw the removal of loan limits for first-time borrowers, which allows them to shop for homes in areas that were previously too expensive. However, because these loans are provided by qualified lenders and not the VA itself, each lender has to make sure that the borrower can afford their monthly payments.
As a result, lenders have the freedom to set up their own loan limits, which are not administered by the VA, but rather by the applicant’s ability to make payments on time. Currently, VA Home Loan Centers has a loan limit of $5,000,000 for first-time borrowers who are qualified.
This removal of loan limits does not cover borrowers with more than one existing VA loan. Hence, they are still subject to the loan limit set up by their county. As a result of this new law, county limits across the country were also raised from an average of $484,350 to $510,400. Although some counties have even higher loan limits based on the cost of living.
In addition to these changes for first-time borrowers and second-time borrowers, the new law also brought changes to other groups of people. Native American veterans, for example, are no longer required to limit themselves when purchasing or buying a home on Federal Trust Land.
The new law also brought changes to the VA funding fee, which is a one-time payment that is paid by the borrower to lower the cost of a loan for tax-payers. The changes that took place increased the funding fee that is funded by active duty service members from 0.15% to 0.30%. At the same time, it lowered the funding fee for members of the National Guard and military reserves.
Active Duty personnel who have been awarded the Purple Heart due to their heroism can have their funding fee payment waived. The only requirement is that Purple Heart recipients close on their property while still in active duty. Moreover, the program did not affect disabled veterans who were already exempt from having to pay for the funding fee.
All of these changes to the funding fee are temporary and are set to last until 2022.
VA Home Loans
VA home loans are government-guaranteed loans that are designed to assist veterans, active-duty service members, and eligible spouses become homeowners. Created by an act of congress in 1944 to help veterans returning home from World War 2, buy a home. VA home loans have since helped about 22 million American Veterans but the home of their dreams.
Several eligibility requirements must be met to qualify for the VA home loan, these include military service, property, income, and credit score https://www.vahomeloancenters.org/va-home-loan-eligibility. If an applicant meets all of these requirements, they will be able to purchase a home with some of the best benefits available. These benefits include:
- Zero money down payments.
- Lower monthly mortgage payments.
- No pre-payment penalties.
- Lower interest rates.
- No mortgage premiums.
In addition to these great benefits, VA loans also offer the option of having your home loan either be a 15 or a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage.
The changes that were implemented at the beginning of 2020 have made an already excellent home loan program even better. By signing this program into law, the government reinforced the notion that they really care about our men and women in the military.
Phil Georgiades is the CLS for VA Home Loan Centers, a government-sponsored brokerage focused on VA Home Loans. With over 22 years of experience working in real estate, Phil and his team of trained agents can help you find the loan that is right for you. To apply for a VA loan, please visit https://www.vahomeloancenters.org/apply-for-a-va-home-loan/