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There are a great many commonly asked questions about VA home loans, but one of the most-asked topics revolves around the issue of VA loan eligibility. One important issue connected to eligibility is the nature of an applicant's military discharge.

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Bruce Reichstein is an Expert on (VA) Military/Veteran Home Loan Guidelines for over 26 years — www.VALoans.com. He is an experienced VA Loan Mortgage Banker who is passionate about assisting US Military Veterans utilize their Veteran Eligibility to purchase a home.

Qualifying for a VA Loan

There are a great many commonly asked questions about VA home loans, but one of the most-asked topics revolves around the issue of VA loan eligibility. There are many seeking VA home loans who need to know whether a specific situation disqualifies a borrower from VA loans or whether exceptions may apply in some cases.

One important issue connected to VA loan eligibility is the nature of an applicant's military discharge. It would be easy to assume a VA loan MUST have an Honorable discharge in order to be approved. What is the reality?

VA loan rules stipulate that as long as a borrower's military discharge was not characterized as Dishonorable, it's still possible to get a VA loan (assuming credit qualifying criteria and other requirements are met.)

Borrowers who serve for less than 24 months (under the guidelines for those serving since the Gulf War) are generally not eligible for a VA mortgage, but exceptions DO apply for those who served less than two years but were affected by force reduction policies, medical discharges or other circumstances.

Active duty service qualifying requirements for the VA mortgage loan program are different than those of the Guard and Reserve. Did you know surviving spouses of military members who died as a result of military service are also eligible for VA loans if they meet VA qualifying criteria? This is another aspect of the program that would be easy to overlook, but it's an important benefit for those who qualify.

Some people mistakenly assume that because they have a foreclosure or bankruptcy on their credit history that they can never again qualify for a VA home loan--this is not true. Those who have waited several years before considering their home loan options again, and who have worked hard to improve their credit may be eligible once more to apply for a VA mortgage.

It's not a good idea to assume you aren't eligible for VA loan benefits-- speak to a loan officer or a VA representative-let the government decide who is, and who is not qualified to apply. You can start learning about VA loan eligibility be exploring the VA official site at www.VA.gov, or you can speak to a loan officer about your circumstances.