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VA Loans – Using VA Loans to Make Your Home More Energy-Efficient

By: Grant Moon 09/10/12 02:20 pm

VA Loans – Using VA Loans to Make Your Home More Energy-Efficient

 

Although one of the primary uses of a VA loan is to purchase or refinance a home, it’s also possible to use this benefit for energy efficient improvements. If you are a former or current member of the military and wish to make your home more energy efficient, you can use VA loans to help offset this cost. There are numerous benefits associated with making your home more energy-efficient. These types of repairs help regulate the home’s temperature more effectively while reducing utility bills as well as your carbon footprint. To get started with using the VA Loan Guarantee Program to finance these improvements, it’s helpful to examine what falls under the category of energy-efficient improvements.

There are numerous types of improvements that you can fund using VA loans. The following are examples of energy-efficient repairs covered under this program.

  • Installing solar heating – If you’ve been thinking about installing solar power in your home, the VA loan program can help you accomplish this. This includes solar heating and cooling systems as well as water heating systems.
  • Windows–Energy efficient improvements for windows help keep hot and cold air from leaking out of your home, for greater efficiency.
  • Insulation repairs – Improving the insulation within your walls, water heaters, floors, attic, and ceilings will help shield your home from the elements and reduce energy bills.
  • Repairing or replacing old furnaces – If you have an older home with an inefficient furnace, you can take advantage of efficiency modifications on the list of approved improvements.

Keep in mind that you will require documentation of these repairs, whether you do the work yourself or pay a contractor to take care of it. The VA loans can include up to $3,000 of the documented cost, or a maximum of $6,000 if the reduction in utilities bills helps offset the cost of an increased mortgage payment. Be sure to find out which repairs are covered before undertaking your home improvements.

In order to take advantage of VA loans to cover the cost of your home improvements, you will need to meet eligibility requirements. Millions of active-duty service members and veterans across the country are eligible for participation in the VA Loan Guarantee Program. This includes those who have served a minimum of 181 days on active duty, three months during war time, or at least 6 years in the National Guard or Reserves.

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