What Are The VA Loan Limits? –Forbes Advisor

What Are The VA Loan Limits?


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Veterans Affairs (VA) home loans offer an easy way for service members, Veterans and their spouses to buy a home without saving up for a down payment or paying for private mortgage insurance (PMI).

The maximum VA loan limits you can qualify for are based on entitlement, lender, credit and the county you’re buying your home in. Here’s what you should know about the VA loan limits for 2022.

VA Loan Limits for 2022

As of January 1, 2020, there are no loan limits for VA loans of more than 144,000 if you have full entitlement. The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019 removed VA loan limits for all veterans and service members. This is the legislation that eliminated VA limits beyond the conforming loan limits set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA).

Even though these loans no longer have VA specific limits, the FHFA still sets the maximum borrowing amount. That limit may be divided among multiple homes, however, so you may not have entitlement if you had a previous VA loan that you didn’t pay off on a home you no longer have.

The limit doesn’t cap the amount you can borrow overall—just what you can borrow for a mortgage with no down payment.

VA County Loan Limits 2022

Though the VA itself no longer governs loan limits, there are absolute maximum VA county loan limits that are based on numbers from the FHFA.

Most of the country has a maximum limit of $647,200. However, some counties have higher limits, and they aren’t necessarily located where you’d think they would be. For instance, Tennessee has a few counties with limits up to $694,600.

New York, California, Alaska, Utah, Wyoming, Virginia and Hawaii have counties with a $970,800 limit, for example. Washington state has counties with limits nearing $900,000. Colorado, Idaho, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maryland are other states with some high county loan limits.

You can check out the FHFA’s conforming loan limits map to find the limit in your area.

VA Loan Limits Set by Lenders

Even if you have full entitlement, lenders might have their own loan limits based on your income, debt-to-income (DTI) ratio or credit score. So, each lender’s VA loan requirements may be different.

If one lender doesn’t offer you the amount you need, compare the offer with other lenders. This is always a good idea so you can find the loan that best fits your needs.

What Is VA Entitlement?

VA entitlement is the amount the VA is willing to pay your lender if you can’t pay your mortgage.

If you’re considering a VA loan—and qualify for one—the first step is to get your entitlement certificate to present to lenders. But there are different types of entitlement that can affect your loan limits.

VA Full Entitlement

Since getting a VA loan is considered a VA benefit, a fully entitled person must fall into at least one of these three categories:

  1. You’re using your home loan benefit for the first time.
  2. You paid off a VA loan in full when you sold your home.
  3. You short-sold your home, but still paid the VA back for the full amount of your loan.

Here is what the VA guarantees with full entitlement:

  • For any loan up to $144,000: The VA pays up to $36,000
  • For any loan over $144,000: The VA pays up to 25% of the loan amount

Tip: Don’t worry about additional terms like full entitlement or bonus entitlement. Most of that is technical language the VA uses when working out the details with lenders. But always check with your lender first to ensure you understand all the details before taking out a loan.

VA Partial Entitlement

If you own a home, you may have partial eligibility for up to the remaining amount of your total VA home loan entitlement limit.

Let’s say you want to buy a home appraised at $400,000 and you have a $200,000 house. You have enough remaining eligibility based on the lowest county limits in the country to own both properties.

keep in mind: Each lender has different requirements to qualify. So make sure you review the details to ensure you’re eligible for the loan you want.

How to Get a VA Entitlement Certificate

If you’re considering a VA loan, the first step is to get your VA home loan Certificate of Eligibility (COE). To get your COE, you’ll need military paperwork to apply.

  • veterans: Need their discharge and separation papers (DD214)
  • Active duty service members: Need a statement of service signed by their commander, adjutant or personnel officer with the information the VA requests

You can find a full list of requirements based on your service at the US. Department of Veterans Affairs website.

Qualifying For a VA Home Loan

VA home loans offer military service members and veterans the opportunity to buy a home with a lower credit score and even sometimes a better rate—while avoiding the upfront costs of down payments and private mortgage insurance.

Applying for a VA loan is different from applying for a regular mortgage. But once you secure your COE and compare the best VA lenders, you’ll have a better idea of ​​what you can afford—and which loan is the right fit.

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