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The first step to getting a VA loan is determining your eligibility. This section provides information on requirements for VA loan eligibility, and the eligibility application process.
While some types of VA loan refinancing won't use your credit score, for your initial VA loan most lending institutions will use a benchmark of some kind. On average, that number is around 620.
Generally, if you have completed at least 90 days of active duty service,
you have at least 6 years of service either in the Reserves or National Guard,
you have served at least 181 days of active service during peacetime,
you have 90 cumulative days of active service under Title 10 or Title 32. For Title 32 service, at least 30 of those days must have been consecutive,
you're the spouse of a military service member who either died in the line or duty, or as a result of a service-related disability.
In order to qualify for a VA loan you'll need to provide your lending institution with a COE, or Certificate of Eligibility. The process to obtain a COE involves obtaining proof of service and filling out the right paperwork for your military branch. You can apply online or print out a COE request from the VA website. If you have access to your eBenefits portal you can receive your COE confirmation in just a few minutes. If you print out your form and wait for a mail response, expect the Certificate of Eligibility to take between 4 and 6 weeks.
The first step in a purchase or refinance with a VA loan is to get rate quotes from multiple lenders. Often, your lender will then guide you through the rest of the process, from COE to closing.
Compare VA Loan rates with the Military.com VA Loan rate table.