VA Loan FAQs

We have the answers to the most common VA loan questions.

Check today's rates 

va-loans




Have questions about how to apply for a VA loan?

We have answers. Please feel free to reach out directly to our loan officers if you have further questions. We look forward to hearing from you!

A VA loan is an exclusive, low-cost loan that helps enlisted service members and veterans of the United States military achieve their dream of home ownership. The VA loan was established in 1944 to help military service members buy a home after returning from World War II.  VA loans are backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs and can typically be used to finance up to 100% of a primary residence.

VA loans help military members, veterans, and other eligible borrowers purchase homes and refinance existing loans. VA loans usually offer low interest rates, no mortgage insurance, and no down payment. The loans are issued by private lenders but are guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). This backing allows lenders to offer advantageous rates and terms and not require a down payment. 

To apply for a VA loan, you first need to establish if you are eligible by falling into one of these four categories:

  1. An active duty service member
  2. A veteran of the military who’s been honorably discharged
  3. Member of the National Guard or Reserves
  4. An unmarried spouse of a military member who either died while on active duty or due to a disability that resulted from their service

Then you will need to apply for a VA loan Certificate of Eligibility, which can be found on the VA’s website. While most VA loans don’t require a down payment or minimum income requirements, you will still need to have an acceptable debt-to-income ratio. During the VA loan process, you must have the house you wish to purchase appraised by a VA-approved appraiser. Your application will be submitted to underwriting to ensure you’ve met all the VA and private lender requirements. Once the underwriter has completed the review, they will either give you the approval to proceed to close, give conditional approval or deny your application.

There is no limit to the number of times a borrow can take advantage of VA loans as long as they still have money available in their entitlement or have paid off any previous VA loans and have restored their entitlement. Another scenario is your VA loan has been assumed by another veteran, which will restore your entitlement.

Yes, a VA loan can be assumable, even by someone who wouldn’t have originally been eligible to take out the loan themselves. The new borrower will still need to provide adequate financial qualifications to the lender. Ask your lender what requirements will be needed. 

VA loans take no longer to close than a conventional loan. In most cases, you can close within 45 days. An Interest Rate Reduction Refinancing Loan (IRRRL) can be closed in as little as 30 days.

With your VA home loan, you may purchase a home with no money down with a purchase price up to your specific county limit. You can find more information on specific VA loan county limits at www.va.gov or by contacting a NASB VA loan officer. 

There is no VA loan limit. However, depending on the purchase price or balance of the loan you wish to refinance, you may be required to make a down payment or in the case of a refinance, you may be required to have additional equity. Contact a NASB VA loan officer for further details.

In many cases, eligible borrowers will qualify for a VA refinance with little or no equity in their home. If you have an existing VA home loan, then it’s possible to qualify for an Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan (IRRRL) that requires no appraisal. So if you’re upside down on the home or have little equity, you may still be able to refinance. In some cases, if you have an FHA or conventional loan, the VA will allow 100% loan-to-value (LTV), so the home will need to appraise for what you owe on it. If the home appraises for less than you owe, then you may need to bring cash to closing to cover the difference. Contact NASB lender for further details.

No, a VA loan is guaranteed by the U.S. government. You can purchase a home with no equity and pay no monthly mortgage insurance premiums.

You may either finance the cost of the refinance into your loan amount, or the lender may pay your closing costs. You are not required to have cash in the transaction to qualify for an Interest Rate Reduction Refinancing Loan.

A VA Interest Rate Reduction Loan, or IRRRL for short, is a simplified way for veterans to get their VA refinance loan approved. Also called a VA streamline refinance, an IRRRL doesn't require an appraisal or go through the typical VA underwriting process, because the lender uses the information from the original VA mortgage loan. Here's more information.

Yes, it is possible to get an Interest Rate Reduction Refinancing Loan (IRRRL) on a non-owner occupied home.

Members of the military, whether on active duty, veterans, or otherwise eligible, have access to VA loans, which offer several benefits to borrowers. There is often no down payment, no private mortgage insurance is required, it may be  is easier to qualify, the interest rates are competitive and closing costs can be lower. Here's a blog that can tell you more.
Every active duty member is issued a DD Form 214 when they are separated from the military, and most reservists are issued a DD Form 256. You can also get a military records request from the National Archives that maintains most records.
There is no VA loan limit. However, depending on the purchase price or balance of the loan you wish to refinance, you may be required to make a down payment or in the case of a refinance, you may be required to have additional equity. Contact a NASB VA loan officer for further details.
There’s no minimum income requirement for a VA loan. However, you do need to have an acceptable debt-to-income ratio (“DTI”). This DTI takes your monthly debts and divides it by your gross monthly income.
Another income-related requirement relates to residual income. This is the amount of income that’s left each month after all other expenses have been paid. This remaining amount should cover food, transportation, and other basic living costs. The amount of residual income that the VA requires to qualify for their program will vary by location and family size.
Keep in mind that although the VA doesn’t set credit score minimums, lenders may have specific credit score requirements. Here's a blog that tell more.

Documentation you may need for a VA loan includes but is not limited to the following:

  • Copy of driver’s license
  • Two years full tax returns - all pages and all schedules
  • Two most recent pay stubs with year-to-date pay
  • Two most recent asset statements - all pages with full transaction history
  • Copy of your mortgage statement if you currently own
  • Bankruptcy and discharge papers (if applicable)
  • Certificate of Eligibility (COE).
  • Form 28-1880 (Request for COE)
  • Form DD-214
Yes, you can, although conventional loans typically have high interest rates and can charge monthly private mortgage insurance premiums. One reason to refinance a VA loan to a conventional loan is so that the borrower can use their VA credit to buy a rental home for extra income. Veterans only get one credit to purchase a home and this frees up their VA Entitlement so that they can purchase a second one. Here's a blog that tells more about how to refinance a VA loan to a conforming loan
A Certificate of Eligibility is used to prove to the lender that the buyer has met the VA's service requirement. There are three ways to get one:

1. Ask the lender - they can tap into a database and obtain it relatively quickly
2. Apply online - Go to the eBenefits portal 
3. Apply through mail - Print this form (link to pdf) and return to the address on the form
Yes. Eligibility for a VA loan can begin two years after a Chapter 7 bankruptcy discharge, 12 satisfactory loan payments into an active Chapter 13 bankruptcy with certain restrictions, and only two years after a foreclosure discharge or dismissal.
Instead of requiring mortgage insurance, VA loans have what is called a VA Funding Fee. The amount of the funding fee is based on type of Veteran (regular military or Reserves / National Guard), percent of down payment, and if the borrower ever had a VA-backed loan before.
Yes! You can roll the funding fee into your total loan amount.
This is an assessment of the property's value and condition done by a independent VA appraisal professional. This is not the same as an inspection; the appraisal is done to make sure the home is worth the value you've offered to pay for it, and to make sure it meets both the VA and lender guidelines.
For VA loans, typically no down payment is required.  However, a down payment may be required if the borrower does not have sufficient entitlement, for Graduated Loan Payment loans or one where the loan amount exceeds the property value.  Typically Lenders, however, will also require a down payment of 25% (or more) for the amount in which the loan exceeds the conforming loan limit (‘Jumbo loans’).
Yes - Unless a Power of Attorney ('POA') is approved .
Yes - You can use this website (https://vip.vba.va.gov/portal/VBAH/VBAHome/condopudsearch) to determine the eligibility of a condo. 
Yes, it is possible to get an Interest Rate Reduction Refinancing Loan (IRRRL) on a home currently used as an investment property based on prior occupancy status.
Click here for a calculator to determine VA loan payments based on purchased price, down payment, term, interest rate, military experience and prior VA loan use.

A minimum loan amount of $175,000 is required to apply. Exceptions include mortgage products for properties located within the Greater Kansas City metro and surrounding areas. Contact a NASB Loan Officer for details on the excluded areas and/or zip codes.

What Our Customers Say
Adam O., July 15, 2021
★★★★★ (5)

"My wife and I looked into using a couple of other veteran-focused financial institutions for our VA home loan and NASB was by far the best. Their timeliness, attention to detail, the best rate offered, and customer service is what made our decision to use them for our home purchase."

90 Net Promoter Score

Based on NASB closed loan customer surveys from 6/1/2022 to 5/30/2023

$31 Billion in home loans

In the last decade based on lender data

Since 2010, NASB has helped over 52,000 veterans get loans

Based on lender data

*According to Bain and Company, the source of the Net Promotor Score (‘NPS’) system, a score of 50 is excellent, and anything above 80 is world-class.