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VA loan applicants often wonder about the eligibility of houses they're considering getting a loan for. Brush up on these basic requirements before looking.

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Not available in AZ, NV, or NY

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VA Home Loan Purchases: Basic Requirements

VA loan applicants often wonder about the eligibility of houses they're considering getting a loan for--sometimes the concerns are about the type of property, for some VA loan applicants the concern might be over the condition of the home. For VA insured mortgages there are local ordinances, federal law, and VA requirements which must be met in order for the home to be approved for a VA insured mortgage.

General requirements and more specific guidelines cover VA loan eligibility. There are rules based on known issues--termites, flood zones and high-voltage power lines. The general requirements are simple enough to understand and provide some flexibility to the lender and appraiser when deciding if a particular property qualifies for a VA loan based on VA minimum property requirements.

The Department of Veterans Affairs requires a home to conform to some basic standards. The property must be inhabitable and provide the customary space for sleeping, cooking, and sanitation. The rules for multi-unit properties or multi-purpose buildings include VA requirements that each living unit contain "dedicated" sleeping, cooking, and sanitary areas.

VA requirements also include rules governing the condition of all typical mechanical systems found in the home. A heating and air conditioning system must be safe to operate and protected from weather and other "destructive elements". These mechanical systems must have adequate capacity.

They must be able to function properly in the space it is installed in, meaning for example that a home can't be equipped with a central air system that is too small for the space it must heat or cool.

VA appraisers who find problems or unacceptable issues related to these basic requirements may recommend improvements or alterations. If the property cannot be "reasonably modified" to accommodate these basic requirements, the property could be ineligible for a VA insured home loan.