Soldier sitting on sofa with family Soldier sitting on sofa with family

Home Loans

Learn about the programs and benefits Soldiers and veterans can use to buy or refinance a home.

Your Benefit to Becoming a Homeowner

A father with his daughter on his shoulders painting a room A father with his daughter on his shoulders painting a room

Better Rates and Lower Down Payments

The Veteran Affairs (VA) Home Loan federal program helps Soldiers and veterans get better terms and benefits when purchasing or refinancing a home, compared to a non-military borrower. These benefits include:

  • As low as $0 down payment on the purchase of a home
  • VA guarantees a portion of the loan
  • Lower interest rates and monthly payments
  • Low-cost refinancing options
  • No mortgage insurance required

Ways to Use Your VA Home Loan

You have options when it comes using your VA Home Loan. It’s a lifetime benefit, so you can use it on future purchases as long as you meet the eligibility requirements.

Purchase a Home

These loans from private lenders can help you secure your new home with little to no money down, less costs up front, and lower monthly payments.

Refinance to Save Each Month

Refinancing lets you replace your current loan with a new one under different terms. The VA offers an Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan (IRRRL) to help reduce payments on an existing VA Home Loan.

Refinance to Take Out Cash

If you want to take cash out of your home equity or refinance a non-VA loan into a VA-backed loan, the VA offers a cash-out refinance that helps you do that.

A two-story home with tan fiber cement siding and a two-car garage A two-story home with tan fiber cement siding and a two-car garage

Native American Direct Loan (NADL) Program

If you’re a veteran, and you or your spouse is Native American, the NADL program may help you get a loan to buy, build, or improve a home on federal trust land. You may also get a loan to refinance an existing NADL and reduce your interest rate.

Common questions

What is a COE?

A Certificate of Eligibility (COE) is documentation to prove to your lender that you qualify based on your duty status and service history.

Does the VA offer home loans for surviving spouses?

Yes. To get a VA-backed home loan as the surviving spouse of a veteran, you’ll need a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) to show your lender that you qualify for this benefit. You’ll also need to meet your lender’s credit and income requirements to get a loan.

What is the VA funding fee?

The VA funding fee is a one-time payment (which can be waived in certain situations) that veterans, current Soldiers, or survivors pay on a VA-backed or VA direct home loan. The fee helps lower the cost of the loan for U.S. taxpayers since the VA Home Loan program doesn’t require down payments or monthly mortgage insurance. The fee is calculated as a percentage—between 1.4 and 3.5 percent—of your total loan amount depending on how much you put down and whether it’s your first time using the loan. The fee is paid or included in the loan balance at closing. It can also be paid by the seller, lender, or any other party on your behalf.

Do I have to meet income and credit requirements to get a loan?

Yes. You’ll need to meet your lender’s credit and income loan requirements to receive financing for a VA-backed home loan.

Can I get VA financial counseling to help avoid foreclosure?

If you’re a veteran or the surviving spouse of a veteran, the VA will provide financial counseling regardless of the type of loan you have. If you have a VA-direct or VA-backed loan, you can get a VA loan technician assigned to your loan to provide financial counseling and help you with your servicer or work with you directly in the case of a VA-direct loan.

Explore More Army Benefits

Browse the other benefits that support your success during and after your service.

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Here's What Happens Next

  1. You'll receive an email confirming your request

  2. We'll provide additional information about next steps

  3. You'll work with us to decide whether the Army is right for you

Questions you may have right now

Who will reach out to me?

One of our recruiters will either call or email you to set up time to talk.

Who will reach out to me?

One of our ROTC recruiters will either call or email you to set up time to talk.

What will you ask me?

Our conversation will likely begin with some basic qualifying questions, like your age and education level. From there, the conversation will be about getting to know you and your goals for the future. Expect us to ask about your interests and skills so we can suggest Army jobs that might interest you.

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

How can the Army help me pay for college?

Do I have to go to Basic Training?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

How can the Army help me pay for college?

What is the time commitment for part-time service?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

Can the Army help me pay for medical school?

Do I have to go to Basic Training?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

How do I apply for ROTC scholarships?

How do I join ROTC at the college I want to attend?

Will I be expected to join if I talk to someone?

No. Our goal is to answer your questions and help you decide if the Army is a good option for you. We understand you may not be ready to join yet, or that we may not be the right fit, and that's fine. There's no obligation for talking to us.

Thanks for reaching out,

Here's What Happens Next

  1. You'll receive an email confirming your request

  2. We'll provide additional information about next steps

  3. You'll work with us to decide whether the Army is right for you

Questions you may have right now

Who will reach out to me?

One of our recruiters will either call or email you to set up time to talk.

What will you ask me?

Our conversation will likely begin with some basic qualifying questions, like your age and education level. From there, the conversation will be about getting to know you and your goals for the future. Expect us to ask about your interests and skills so we can suggest Army jobs that might interest you.

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

Do I qualify to join the Army?

Can I join as an Officer?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

Do I qualify to join the Army?

Can I join as an Officer?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

What type of health care jobs are available in the Army?

Can the Army help me pay for medical school?

How can I prepare for the conversation?

While we'll ask you questions, this is your opportunity to ask some of your own. Here are a couple to get you started:

Can I join ROTC at my age

Can I join as an Officer?

Will I be expected to join if I talk to someone?

No. Our goal is to answer your questions and help you decide if the Army is a good option for you. We understand you may not be ready to join yet, or that we may not be the right fit, and that's fine. There's no obligation for talking to us.

Thanks for reaching out, .

We admire you for considering such a big career decision at your age. Unfortunately, we're unable to directly reach out to you until you are at least sixteen years old and a junior in high school. However, the following ROTC info is something that may interest you now.

Questions you may have right now

How old do I have to be to serve in the Army full-time?

To become an enlisted Soldier, you must be 17 years old. To become an Army Officer, you must be at least 18 years old and have a college degree obtained either through ROTC, U.S. Military Academy at West Point, or from another college or university program. Learn more about Army Eligibility Requirements and how to receive Officer training while in college.

How can the Army help me pay for college?

There are a variety of options available to help you pursue education with flexibility, such as ROTC programs, the GI Bill, and other programs that help pay for college tuition, trade school, technical school, or trainings. View all of the Education Benefits available to you

How do I apply for ROTC Scholarships?

Army ROTC has several scholarships available for college-bound high school students. Review your options at ROTC Scholarships, or immediately apply by creating an account at my.goarmy.com to get started.

How old do I have to be to serve in the Army part-time?

To become an enlisted Soldier, you must be 17 years old. To become an Army Officer, you must be at least 18 years old and have a college degree obtained either through ROTC, U.S. Military Academy at West Point, or from another college or university program. Learn more about Army Eligibility Requirements and how to receive Officer training while in college.

What are the ways to serve part-time?

You can serve part-time as a Soldier in the Army Reserve or the Army National Guard. By serving part-time, you are able to continue your college education or work a civilian job, while earning an extra paycheck and maintaining many of the benefits of military service.

How can the Army help me pay for college?

There are a variety of options available to help you pursue education with flexibility, such as ROTC programs, the GI Bill, and other programs that help pay for college tuition, trade school, technical school, or trainings. View all of the Education Benefits available to you.

How do I become a health care provider in the Army?

You can serve part-time or full-time as you train in our health care program. Upon graduation of the program, you will enter the Army health care team as a Commissioned Officer.

What types of medical careers are available in the Army?

There are numerous health care careers available through the Army Medical Education Deparment (AMEDD), including physicians, dentists, nurses, veterinarians, and many more. View your career options.

How can the Army help me pay for college?

There are a variety of options available to help you pursue education with flexibility, such as ROTC programs, the GI Bill, and other programs that help pay for college tuition, trade school, technical school, or trainings. View all of the Education Benefits available to you.

What are the benefits of joining ROTC?

ROTC makes it possible to achieve your ambitions. Become a leader and serve your country in one of the nation's top leadership training programs. You can do this while maintaining your college curriculum and earning up to 100% tuition coverage. Upon graduation, you're guaranteed a career as an Army Officer.

How do I prepare to join ROTC?

When you're at least 16 years old and at least a high school junior, you can reach out to us, or even talk to your high school counselor. Together, we'll talk options and decide if ROTC is the right path for you.

Will I become an Officer if I complete ROTC?

Yes. After graduation, you are commissioned as a highly respected second lieutenant in the Army, entrusted with leading other Soldiers.

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