PCS Season and VA Loans
Military members receiving change of station orders may be eligible for VA loans to purchase homes near their new military bases. Are you ready for homeownership?
Permanent Change of Station or PCS Season is May through August. Many military towns across the country can make wonderful places to live. Depending on your housing needs and eligibility, VA purchase loans may be a useful relocation tool. Most Veterans can obtain a VA loan with no down payment, and these government-backed loans never require private mortgage insurance.
A VA Loan in Today’s Market
The current home buying market may make a VA loan today very practical. Present interest rates are at near-record lows, and national home prices are down an average of 15% since 2006. This combination can make for ideal conditions to purchase a home for many eligible borrowers.
For VA home loan eligibility, remember 2, 6, 90 and 181
You may be eligible for a VA home loan if you have served:
- 2 years in active duty military, if you enlisted after 9/8/1980
- 6 years in Reserves/National Guard
- 90 total days active duty during wartime, and 90 continuous days if you’re currently on active duty
- 181 days active duty during peacetime, if you served before 1980.
Those who served less than the minimum duration may also be eligible if they were released for a qualifying reason outlined by the VA, such as a hardship or service-connected disability. Certain surviving spouses can also receive VA home loan benefits.
Whether you’re changing stations or not, military members often have similar reasons to buy a home as their civilian counterparts. Perhaps some of these apply to you:
- Owning may be cheaper than renting
- My family is growing too big for military housing
- I want a place of my own, to put down some “roots”
- Home prices may be going up
- My local market may be a buyer’s market, presenting good opportunities
Whatever your reason for wanting to buy a home, a VA loan can help eligible borrowers reach their dream. If you’re ready to explore homeownership options in your new base town, contact a VA loan professional today.
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