One of the benefits of VA loans is that they allow veterans to secure home loans with lower interest rates and lower qualifications than a traditional loan. Even with these lower qualifications, however, VA loan applicants sometimes still need a co-signer to qualify. If you fall into this category, it’s a good idea to understand who can co-sign on your VA loan and how it might affect your odds of qualifying for that loan. Fortunately, MortgageAdvisor.com’s VA loan experts are well-equipped to answer any of your VA loan co-signer questions.
Individuals who can co-sign on VA loans include:
- Your spouse (must be legally married)
- A single military member (if you are unmarried)
- Certain lenders will also allow a single non-military person
In short, it’s perfectly normal for a VA loan borrower to need a co-signer to qualify for a loan. If this describes you, the more you know about who can co-sign for you and how it will affect your loan, the more of a headstart you’ll have in the process.
Since the VA loan co-signer application process can sometimes be a daunting one, we have provided below two of the most frequently asked questions regarding the use of co-signers on VA loans.
Who Is An Eligible Co-Signer?
VA guidelines clearly specify who veterans can use as co-signers on VA loans and who they can’t. First, the VA permits legally married spouses to co-sign on a loan. Those veterans who are unmarried can get a fellow veteran who is unmarried to co-sign on their VA loan. A third option, which is only available through some lenders, allows veterans to use an unmarried, non-military individual as their co-signer, but this comes with a catch: the VA will consider only the veteran’s property in what they can “guarantee,” not the co-signer’s. In other words, using this option can limit how much you qualify for. Since not every lender will allow this third option, if you find yourself in this category, we strongly recommend that you find out if your lender handles this situation before you begin the loan application process.
Will A Co-Signer Affect My Chances Of Getting The Loan?
Co-signers can often make the difference in securing a VA loan or not. Just as your financial information and credit history is taken into account when determining if you qualify and what rates you’ll receive, your co-signer’s information must also be scrutinized. How will the VA look at your and your co-signer’s information? For one thing, VA loans don’t rely on high credit scores to determine eligibility. Instead, they look at your and your co-signer’s most recent 12 months of credit history, while being less strict about credit scores, bankruptcies, and foreclosures.
If you find yourself needing a co-signer to qualify for a VA loan, know that the ability to include a co-signer has allowed thousands of veterans in you area to secure a VA loan. Fortunately, now that you know who can and cannot act as your co-signer – whether your legal spouse, a fellow unmarried veteran or an approved unmarried non-veteran – you can avoid unfortunate surprises and get a head start on identifying who your co-signer will be.
Want more information on your VA loan co-signer options and the effects they can have on your VA loan? Contact a Mortgage Advisor.