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A VA loan borrower who has made timely payments for the last 12 months serves as a guide and demonstrates their willingness to repay a VA home loan. A borrower who continuously makes late payments and/or has delinquent accounts would not be a good candidate for a VA loan.

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VA Loan Credit Issues

VA Loan Guidelines

Lenders will analyze a borrower's past credit performance in determining the loan for approval. A borrower who has made timely payments for the last 12 months serves as a guide and demonstrates their willingness to repay future credit obligations. On the opposite side, a borrower who reflects continuous slow payments, judgments and delinquent accounts is not a good candidate for loan approval.

Below is a list of items concerning the borrower's credit:

LATE MORTGAGE PAYMENTS

In circumstances not involving bankruptcy, satisfactory credit is generally considered to be reestablished after the veteran, or veteran and spouse, have made satisfactory payments for 12 months after the date of the last derogatory credit item(s).

When the underwriter analyzes the borrowers credit; it is the overall pattern of credit behavior that must be reviewed, rather than isolated cases of slow payments. A period of financial difficulty does not disqualify the borrower if a good payment pattern has been maintained since then.

Account balances reduced to judgment by a court must either be paid in full or subject to a repayment plan with a history of timely payments.

NO CREDIT HISTORY

In the area of credit, the lack of an established credit history should not be a deterrent to loan approval. As provided in the credit standards, a satisfactory payment history on items such as rent, utilities, phone bills, etc., may be used to establish a satisfactory credit history.

CHAPTER 7 BANKRUPTCY

The VA guidelines state that a minimum of two years must elapse since the discharge date of the borrower and / or spouse's Chapter 7 bankruptcy, not the filing date. A full explanation of the bankruptcy will be required. The borrower must also have re-established good credit, qualify financially and have good job stability.

CHAPTER 13 BANKRUPTCY

The VA guidelines state that they will consider a borrower still paying on a Chapter 13 Bankruptcy if the payments to the court have been satisfactorily made and verified for a period of one year. In addition, the court trustee will need to give written approval to proceed. A full explanation of the bankruptcy will be required. The borrower must also have re-established good credit, qualify financially and have good job stability.

COLLECTIONS, JUDGEMENTS AND FEDERAL DEBTS

The VA guidelines state that if a collection is minor in nature, it usually does not need to be paid off as a condition for loan approval. Judgments must be paid in full prior to closing. A borrower is not eligible for the loan if they are delinquent on any federal debt. This can include tax liens, student loans, etc. Payment arrangements that would bring the borrower up to date may be considered for loan approval.

FORECLOSURE

A borrower whose previous residence or other real property was foreclosed on or given a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure within the previous two years since the disposition date is generally not eligible for a VA insured mortgage. If the foreclosure was on a VA loan, the applicant may not have full entitlement available for the new loan.

CONSUMER CREDIT COUNSELING PLAN

If a veteran, or veteran and spouse, have prior adverse credit and are participating in a Consumer Credit Counseling Plan, they may be determined to be a satisfactory credit risk if they demonstrate 12 months' satisfactory payments and the counseling agency approves the new credit.

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