VA Loans for First-Time Homebuyers: A Basic Guide

by Maryann Ross Levanti 01/02/2022

If you've served in the U.S. military, a VA loan might be an excellent way to finance your first home. If you're interested in using this benefit, it's important to know the steps involved. Here is a basic guide to buying your first home with a VA loan:

Get Your Certificate of Eligibility

A certificate of eligibility from the VA shows you meet the requirements to apply for a VA loan. These could be either personal military requirements or surviving spouse requirements. While you won't need this document until it's time to close on the loan, it's best to get it as early as possible to avoid paperwork delays.

Compare Lenders

Comparing lenders when applying for a mortgage is especially important if you're wanting a VA loan. Not every lender offers VA loans, and some who do specialize in a specific type of loan or type of client. Find a lender who offers first-time buyer benefits to veterans through your state.

Prepare Cash

VA loans don't require down payments, but it's still important to prepare some cash to pay for other expenses. Some of these costs include the earnest money deposits and moving expenses. You can also increase your odds of approval if you have strong cash savings, as lenders use this as a determining factor in your loan application process.

Find the Right Agent

Finding a real estate agent who has experience working with military clients will benefit you in many ways. It also pays to find an agent who has worked with first-time homebuyers and can help you navigate the system with confidence. Try interviewing a few agents and asking about their prior experience and expertise. It can also help to inquire about any special training or certifications they might have received for working with military clients.

Buying your first home can be stressful, but if you're a military veteran, you have great opportunities for financing. Remember these tips when considering your loan options to make the best decision.

About the Author
Author

Maryann Ross Levanti

I'm Maryann Ross Levanti, looking forward to meeting you and helping you find your new home and/or sell your current one. I've lived in Fairfield County the majority of my life - grew up in Westport, (Coleytown, Coleytown, Staples), undergrad at UPenn, masters from Edinburgh, Scotland. I'm ABR and GRI certified, and hold a broker's license in real estate, as well as a provisional appraiser license. Additionally, I am the exclusive agent for CCO Habitats - a HOBI award winning building company which regularly offers new construction homes as well as renovated homes to the market in Westport. In my 20 plus years of selling homes, I've learned many things - among them - the customer is not always right. Nor am I. However, if we work together we have a much better chance of being correct and either getting your home sold or finding the home that best suits your needs. Yes, I'm outspoken and opinionated. But anyone with a license can open a door - wouldn't you rather have doors opened by someone who actually tells you the truth and is willing to put her years of experience and knowledge into working 24/7 for you to help you understand what you're getting into? You may not always like what you hear, and there are no crystal balls in this business. But I believe an informed decision is always better. Hopefully you do too! As a yearly winner of the Connecticut Five Star Realtor award and frequently repeated recipient of customer service awards indicate; my priority is you, my client, and my clients appreciate it. Put my local knowledge, professional skills, ethics and dedication to work for you - give me a call 203.984.5157.