Are VA Loans Assumable? Pros & Cons
Investing in a home or property is not always as simple and straightforward as applying for a loan or reaching out to a mortgage company near you. In some instances, the property you are interested in may have a VA loan attached to it.
A VA loan, or a Veterans Affairs loan, is a loan that is guaranteed by the US Department of Veterans Affairs for those who have or are currently serving in the US military.
In the past, traditionally, VA loans were only available to those who had served in the military, making them non-assumable by any other purchaser or borrower. However, the flexibility of VA loans has expanded, now making loans from the Veterans Affairs office assumable by others who meet broader specifications.
Keep reading to find out whether you can assume a VA loan.
- An assumable loan can be transferred to another borrower.
- VA loans are assumable by those who have VA benefits as well as civilians.
- Assuming a VA loan can allow the borrower to enjoy savings and more flexibility in their mortgage.
What Is an Assumable Loan?
When it comes to researching VA loan rates, understanding what an assumable VA loan is is highly advisable. An assumable VA loan means that the loan itself can be transferred to another buyer or purchaser, even if that borrower is not originally qualified for a VA loan themselves.
Whenever someone is qualified for a VA loan, they are typically required to maintain that loan over an extended period of time. With a VA assumable loan, individuals are able to take over the existing terms of a VA loan, including rates and the overall nature of the loan itself.
Are VA Loans Assumable?
The answer to “are VA loans assumable?” is yes. However, not everyone is able to qualify and take advantage of the solution.
In order for the original borrower to obtain a VA assumable loan, they will need to meet specific military background requirements as well as service requirements, depending on the type of loan they are seeking.
It’s important to keep in mind that borrowers who are interested in assuming a loan from those in the military do not require any military experience or service themselves.
Who Is Eligible to Assume a VA Loan?
Before you apply for a VA loan, keep in mind that the original borrower of a VA loan will need to confirm their military service and commitment. However, those who are interested in assuming a VA loan do not require any particular military experience in order to qualify.
In fact, those who are interested in assuming a VA loan will typically only need to provide their financial documentation and prove their ability to pay back the loan based on the individual lender’s qualifications. This, ultimately, works out in favor of those who wish to eliminate their VA loans as well as buyers who are seeking top-notch interest rates that are locked in.
Should You Assume a VA Loan?
It depends on your particular circumstances. Whether you should assume a VA loan is a highly personal decision, but we’ve outlined some of the pros and cons to consider before doing so.
Pros of Assuming a VA Loan
Some of the most notable pros of an assumable VA loan include:
- Assumption flexibility: One of the most appealing aspects of a VA loan that is assumable is that it can be assumed by someone who does not have military experience or is a veteran. This means as long as an individual qualifies financially, they are typically capable of assuming a VA loan in most situations.
- Save on closing costs: In many cases where a VA loan is present, it is possible for the borrower or individual who is assuming the loan to receive appraisals for free. Additionally, buyers who are assuming VA loans also have the ability to save potentially thousands of dollars on closing costs, as these are also often covered. Who pays fees will usually be determined between the buyer and the seller, you may still have to pay certain fees including lender’s fees.
- Gain access to VA benefits: Whenever a seller relinquishes their VA loan to another buyer, the new buyer assumes all of the VA loan benefits, even if they are not active military or veterans themselves.
- Lowered funding fee: Most VA loans have a lower funding fee if they are assumption loans over traditional VA loans. At 0.5% of the loan amount, this makes VA assumable loans extremely appealing.
- Inherited interest rates: One reason so many flock to assume a VA loan is their ability to inherit set interest rates. If an interest rate is low and locked in with a VA loan, it is much easier for the new buyer/borrower to assume the same loan interest rates and terms of conditions without a hassle. This is often a much better deal than seeking out a traditional mortgage.
Cons of Assuming a VA Loan
Unfortunately, as with taking on any financial burden, there are a few drawbacks to taking on an assumable VA loan. When it comes to assumable VA loans, they may not be right for everyone, depending on the type of property you are interested in and the terms you are open to with any new loan you sign for personally.
A few potential drawbacks of an assumable VA loan include:
- Not required to approve: Although you may have found yourself the best deal possible on the market, lenders are not required to approve any or all assumption loans. In some cases, you may need to seek out a lender who is open to working with you and willing to approve a VA loan, so long as you are qualified otherwise.
- Lending requirements still exist: While the lending options are often more flexible when it comes to assuming a VA loan, it’s important to recognize that lending requirements still exist. Whenever you are thinking of investing in a new home or property that is available with an assumable VA loan, keep in mind that you will need to meet the income and credit requirements in place in order to qualify for the loan itself.
- Lengthy process: While you may have the ability to place a down payment on a home and move in as quickly as a few weeks, a VA assumable loan may require a bit more time. In some cases, the loan must also be approved by the VA office itself, which can require weeks or up to months to complete. If you’re working with a lender who has not previously handled assumable VA loans, this can further complicate the process.
For sellers, it’s important to note that the VA entitlement in use remains with the property unless another VA-qualified buyer takes over the loan. This is non-negotiable and cannot be removed or remedied at a later time. You’ll need to decide whether it’s worthwhile to lose out on this portion of your benefits.
Steps for How to Assume a VA Loan
First, it’s important to consider what requirements are necessary in order for you to assume the VA loan you are interested in. If you’re an active duty service member or veteran, you’ll need to confirm your VA loan eligibility first.
If you are not a qualified veteran, that’s okay. Most often, you will only need to qualify financially in order to move forward with the process of assuming a VA loan.
When it comes to applying for and taking out VA home loans, there are a few steps to keep in mind even once you are qualified. You may need to wait for the paperwork to be verified prior to moving on to the next steps. Typically, the determination of eligibility is made anywhere between hours and weeks.
If you are unsure of where you stand or you want to know the timeline of your ability to assume a loan, speak directly with the lender you have chosen to represent you and your interest in obtaining and assuming a VA loan.
Once eligibility is determined, you’ll move forward with the loan process and assume the liability of the mortgage.
Our VA Loan Experts Can Help
At Griffin Funding, we are VA loan experts and are able to walk you through the process of assuming a VA loan so it’s as efficient as possible. We have a streamlined qualification and approval process that will make assuming a VA loan a pleasant experience.
Contact us today at 855-698-1230 to speak with one of our loan specialists today. We are proud to serve military members and look forward to helping you purchase your home.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can civilians assume a VA loan?
How old do you need to be to assume a VA loan?
Is entitlement always forfeited with a VA loan assumption?
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