Losing a spouse is a devastating event. For the surviving spouses of veterans and military members, VA home loan programs can help ease some of the burden of getting life back on track. The Veterans Administration offers purchase, cash-out refinance and interest rate reduction refinance loans (IRRRL) that can make purchasing or refinancing a home easier and more affordable.
Below are some key things to know about eligibility and benefits. Please note, however, that it is important to speak with a VA specialty lender for more details.
Who is eligible?
- Unmarried, surviving spouses of Veterans who die while in service, or from a service-related disability
- Surviving spouses of certain disabled veterans, whose disability may not have been the cause of death
- Spouses of service members missing in action (MIA) or who are/were prisoners of war (POW) for at least 90 days
- Surviving spouse who remarries on or after attaining age 57, and on or after December 16, 2003 (More details can be found at benefits.va.gov.)
What are some of the benefits of a VA loan for surviving spouses?
- No VA loan funding fee
- As little as zero down on many purchase loans
- Up to 100% refinancing of appraised value
- No monthly mortgage insurance premiums
- Low interest rates
- No penalties for early payoff or balance reduction
The VA loan is a benefit that keeps giving and that is the case for surviving spouses as well. Once you pay off a loan or decide to move into a new home, you can use the benefit again for your next home purchase. Note, however, that the benefit does not extend to children of veterans.