All eligible Veterans can apply for VA home loans to purchase a house or to refinance an existing VA loan by making use of their VA loan basic entitlement. As per the law, any eligible Veteran applying for a VA home loan must satisfy VA loan occupancy requirements along with any other required VA loan property requirements.
The veteran has to sign the occupancy requirements stipulated on:
- VA Form 26-1802a, which is added to the Uniform Residential Loan Application, for pre approval of the VA loan.
- VA Form 26-1820, at the time of VA loan closing of the loan.
In addition to this, the Veteran should follow certain rules prescribed by the VA for VA loan occupancy requirements.
- The veteran should live in the house purchased with the VA loan within 60 days from the date of closing the loan, unless specific and valid reasons are given.
- For an interest rate reduction refinancing loan, the Veteran needs to only show that he or she has occupied the property before.
- If the veteran is on military duty, or is employed at a place far away from the primary residence in question, then the spouse of the veteran should occupy the house to satisfy the occupancy requirement. For IRRRL (Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan), the veteran needs to only certify that the spouse has previously occupied the house.
- Service members, who are on military duty in foreign countries on a temporary basis, can provide a valid on duty certification for the VA loan occupancy requirements.
- Reasonable time shall be provided to veterans for making improvements or other major changes to the house. However, the veteran should certify that he or she will move into the house once the changes are made.
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