While the majority of American young adults are busy becoming established, forging careers, building credit and settling down; an extraordinary few from this group are sacrificing safety, comfort, autonomy and precious time with loved ones in order to serve and protect their country.
As a result, many veterans are at a marked disadvantage when it comes to being able to afford the right home or to even qualify for a decent loan. Thankfully, our federal government and a couple of praiseworthy states have taken steps to give vets a leg up.
If you’re a vet, you need a vet-friendly realtor.
If you can’t find a real estate agent who’s a vet, you’ll at least want to find one who’s familiar with the VA Loan program. Although not every veteran chooses to finance a home purchase with the VA’s help, it’s still advisable to be informed of the pros and cons before deciding if the program is right for you.
VA Home Loans are actually not issued by the VA. Rather, private lenders make loans based on the VA’s guarantee that they will back a large percentage of the loan amount. This bit of protection encourages lenders to extend lower interest rates to veterans who may not be able to qualify for them otherwise.
Other Facts About VA Loans:
- No money down required from qualified buyers
- No prepayment penalties
- No monthly mortgage insurance required
- The benefit is reusable, indefinitely
- Only certain properties qualify
- There is typically a funding fee
- VA loans require VA appraisals
- Buyers are subject to occupancy requirements (must reside in home within a set time limit after closing.)
There are several reputable lenders who handle VA loans and your search engine is the best way to locate rankings and reviews that will point you toward the best ones serving your area.
Speaking of location . . .
In case you’re not necessarily “married” to your current home state and have nothing against Alaska or Texas, you might want to check out some of the special housing benefits these great states offer veterans.
The Last Frontier boasts one of the highest veteran per capita populations in the country and likes to honor its vets in several ways, the most unique taking the form of lands discounts (one-time 25 percent off residential or recreational land), purchase preferences (veterans get first shot at unoccupied, auctioned land) and the Veterans Mortgage Program, which offers low-interest financing to qualified veterans and active duty personnel.
Another state famous for showing vets lots of love, Texas has been offering vets low-interest real estate loans through its Veterans Land Board since 1949. Not only that, but in the case of foreclosure due to loan default, land bought with a VLB loan must be offered at auction to veterans first before it can be offered to the general public. The best part? A qualified vet need only live in Texas one day (with the intention of staying) to receive state veterans benefits.
Thankfully, every state in our great nation has passed some type of veterans benefits legislation and all you need is your search engine (or local VA office) to find out what they are and where to apply. Now if only your search engine could help you find your DD214 . . .
Your Search Engine Can Help You Find Your DD214.
If you’re one of the millions of veterans whose discharge papers have been lost, stolen, destroyed or never received, your search engine can indeed help you find ways to order another copy. The only question is how hard you’re willing to work and how long you’re willing to wait.
Most search engines will direct vets in search of DD214s to eVetRecs, the National Archives’ free service, while other vets might try their luck with the Department of Defense, the VA, branch-specific agencies like U.S. Marine Corps Headquarters, etc. This may not sound like a hassle, until you consider the facts that most U.S. military records are not yet digitized, your records could be in one of hundreds of repositories scattered across the U.S., roughly 40 percent of all eVetRecs request go unfulfilled and there is little to no cooperation between agencies.
If your first request to a government agency doesn’t produce your DD214 (often after waiting months for an answer), you’re going to be left to file a follow-up request or pick another agency to turn to. And unless you know the system, you might have better luck filling out a perfect March Madness bracket. The Facts:
- Each state maintains its own records for the National Guard, as well as DC, meaning that there are 51 separate agencies housing NG records.
- The Army does maintain its own repository, but the National Archives CAN access Army records on request. However, they can’t do so for the Air Force, Coast Guard, Marines, Marine Reserves or Merchant Marines.
- Air Force Records are housed by two separate agencies which operate independently of each other.
- On occasion, National Archive-owned records end up in the possession of the VA, which requires a search of one of 50 different VA locations. The ONLY way to find these records is to speak directly to the office in which it’s housed.
- Unfortunately, when the National Archives receives a request for records that are housed elsewhere, the best most applicants can expect is a letter that basically says, “Go somewhere else.”
Unless, of course, you know about DD214Direct.com, the fastest, easiest way on the planet to order and receive your military records. Our seasoned team of record-retrieval specialists leverage an unprecedented knowledge of the various U.S. government repositories’ systems, procedures, tendencies and even shortcomings to hone in on and recover clients’ files.
From our perfectly-structured, error-free requests to our rapport with records personnel, our diligent follow-up and our uncanny understanding of where to turn next, DD214Direct.com’s courteous, professional team is ready and waiting to begin working on your order today.
Our competitive, 3-tiered pricing lets you choose your desired delivery speed - you can even have your records emailed to your device! Why go it alone? Spend your time doing something you enjoy and let DD214Direct.com take care of the rest!