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Current estimates made by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs tabulate that there are over 21 million former military members currently living in the United States. Of those 21 million veterans, only 6% of them took advantage of the VA’s home loan program that allows veterans to tap into home equity when making their home purchase.

For those veterans unfamiliar with the VA home loan program, the benefits outlined below will show you why the program is extremely beneficial for all former military personnel when they are going through the home buying process.

No Down Payment Required

The biggest advantage that VA loans offer to veterans is that former military members purchasing a home with a VA loan do not need to have money for a down payment on a mortgage. While most conventional mortgage payments require that home buyers pay between 3.5%-5% of the value of their property upfront, VA loans enable veterans to purchase a home immediately with no cash down payment or no mortgage insurance required.

Because veterans working through the Veterans Affairs home loan program do not need to pay monthly interest on home insurance, they are able to budget those savings into their home buying budget, giving America’s former service-members much more buying power when they are on the market for a new home.

Using VA Home Loan Benefits More Than Once

Another great way that the VA home loan benefits allow veterans to tap into home equity is that when veterans pay off their home loan they received through the Veterans Affairs, they are eligible to get another home loan through the same program. Although ex-military members are not allowed to take out multiple loans concurrently, as soon as a veteran pays off their first home loan, they can take another loan out. This perk enables veterans to build up a real estate portfolio more quickly because they are not required to pay down payments on any of these properties!

Another way veterans can tap into home equity by utilizing the VA’s home equity program is to take out the one-time restoration loan that can be put towards home renovations or updates.

Home Loan Benefits Never Expire

Once a veteran has become eligible for a VA home loan, they remain eligible for the rest of their life. For veterans who served decades ago, don’t worry, you are still eligible for acceptance into the home loans program!

Eligibility for this innovative program is determined by the length of time a veteran served, not when they served. To figure out if you are eligible for the VA home loans program, simply contact your local VA and fill out a “DD 214” form.