Are All Veterans Entitled to the Benefit?

October 16, 2012
There are numerous veterans benefits offered to our nation’s servicemembers, one of which is eligibility for a home loan guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. But does simply being a veteran entitle you to these benefits?

VA benefits such as healthcare are guaranteed to any veteran who qualifies for them, but VA home loan eligibility is not guaranteed, as there are a number of factors that come into play, including how long individuals have been in service with the military and whether the VA-approved lender decides to issue the loan.

VA home loans are backed by the federal government but issued by a VA-approved lender, which has some flexibility in deciding whether or not to assume the risk in issuing the loan. If the applicant is qualified in all other ways but does not have a satisfactory credit score and has a troubled financial history, he or she may be denied a VA loan. However, they may also be viewed as a risk worth undertaking by lenders who have more relaxed guidelines than others, since the VA does not impose credit restrictions on the lenders.

VA loans are widely available through VA-approved big banks, credit unions and specialized VA lenders for eligible veterans, Reservists, National Guard members and some surviving spouses. For more information about the VA Home Loan Program, contact the VA’s Regional Loan Office in your area or a VA-approved lender.