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Locking In Your VA Loan Rate

By: Grant Moon 06/06/13 08:47 pm

Locking In Your VA Loan Rate

If you’ve shopped around for a VA loan, you know that interest rate quotes and monthly payment calculations can sometimes lead to a touch of information overload. Perhaps you sat down at your desk one morning and contacted multiple lenders to see what they could offer in terms of rates and fees. Maybe after a few hours of phone calls your worksheet looks confusing, with rate quotes vary between lenders only slightly. But a rate quote does little good until you actually lock that rate in.

How do you lock in your rate? You have to ask the VA lender because each mortgage company has its own rules for locking in. Interest rates can change every day and sometimes during the course of a single business day, based upon various events in the credit markets and until you specifically request that your loan be locked in your rate is not guaranteed.

Lenders will typically have a few basic requirements before accepting a lock request. The  most important is that you actually have an application on file with them; lender’s won’t take a lock request over the phone without a completed loan application along with your signature and authorizations, a property selected and your social security number among other minimum requirements.

Once your desired rate becomes available, you’ll have a choice addressing how long you want your rate to be locked. Longer locks cost a little more than shorter term locks. For example, if you have a 30 year fixed rate VA loan rate at 3.75 percent you might be able to lock that rate in at no cost. If you want to lock in your interest rate for 60 days, you will have to pay an additional lock fee to hold that rate for you.

The key with a VA lock is making sure the rate meets your expectations and you get the shortest lock period that still allows your loan to close in a timely manner.

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