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  • VA Loan after BCT/AIT ?

    I had a very long AIT and spent altogether 9 months on title 10 active orders for training. I'm back home now and my wife and I were looking to purchase a home. I went online to the VA's eBenefits portal and applied for a VA Loan COE and I was approved for it. I have my VA Loan COE in hand but now I'm hearing training in active duty, regardless of it being title 10, does not count towards the VA Loan. If this is the case why was I issued a COE and could this end up being a problem when I close on the loan (3 weeks from today) ? Thanks!

  • #2
    The VA does get things wrong at times because I have received notices from them thinking I was eligible for something and then I was not. From what I gather and has been discussed on this forum before is that if you never served on active duty outside of BCT and AIT; then that will not count. That you will have to have served six years in the Guard (if you were not activated on title 10 orders) to be eligible for the VA loan. Here are some links.

    http://myarmybenefits.us.army.mil/Ho....html?serv=227

    http://www.nationalguard.com/forums/...0-va-home-loan

    http://www.valoans.com/va_article?id=180

    http://www.military.com/money/va-loa...home-loan.html

    I will talk to your home realtor and explain the situation and see what they tell you. But think about it. Should you get this VA loan because your AIT was longer than another Guard member?
    Last edited by Chief Kemosabe; April 4th, 2014, 09:44 PM.

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    • #3
      Thank you Chief. I don't think I should get it over another Guardsman because my AIT was longer, I was just wondering if that was the reason I received a COE. My COE indicates that I am Active Duty and under conditions it states
      "Active Duty Service Member- Valid unless discharged or released subsequent to date of this certificate. A certification of continuous active duty as of date of note is required. "
      I am really confused why I was given a COE if I'm not eligible. I hope to hear back from my lender tomorrow if I actually qualify or not with this COE. Thanks again!

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      • #4
        I do not know what you entered when following this instructions http://www.benefits.va.gov/homeloans...ration_coe.pdf If anything I would call the VA, in addition to your lender. Here is the link https://iris.custhelp.com/app/answer...-contacting-va 1-800-827-1000

        Like I stated earlier, VA goes by information that you provided and probably was not aware that your AD service is only from BCT/AIT. I made that remark because if other Guard members could not get a VA loan based on their AIT being shorter, that will be a discriminator and probably they would only go into MOSes that will provided that benefit based on AIT length.

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        • #5
          Actually Chief there is a more streamlined way to request the COE now, you just login to the VA's eBenefits site and click a link. It apparently looks up your service record and then either issues you a COE right then or there or it denies you. The site link is; https://www.ebenefits.va.gov/ebenefi...enefits.portal once logged in there is a link to apply for the COE online. Very simple and does not require you to fill out anything. To clarify, the eBenefits site did not ask me to upload my DD214 or any other questions, it was a simple click and a few minutes later I received the COE granted and completely filled out with all of my personal information and it states it's issued by EBENFITS.BATCHUSER (which I assume) is the VA's automated system.I still have not heard back from lender if the VA loan is valid but if it's not I am still going to pursue a home loan but will probably go conventional (if I can afford the down payment) at least until I am eligible for the VA Loan to do a refi. Apparently there are some opportunities for an Africa and Kosovo deployment in the near future with my unit so that might speed of my true eligibility.
          Thank you for the links though, you've always been very helpful.

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          • #6
            To be eligible, you must have a good credit score, sufficient income, a valid Certificate of Eligibility (COE), and meet certain service requirements. The COE is to verify you are an Active Duty Service Member but the time you spent on active duty orders cannot have been for training. The active duty time that counts is for being called up for natural disaster, war or roughly 6 years of those weekend drills.

            Certificate of Eligibility

            After establishing that you are eligible, (i.e. you have earned Title 10 time that is NOT for training) you will ALSO need a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) to apply for the loan.

            An applicant must have “active military, naval, or air service” to be considered a veteran for most VA benefits. However, not all types of service are considered active military service for this purpose.

            Active Service. Eligibility requirements for several VA benefits include a certain length of active service. Active service in the National Guard or Reserve includes:
            · Active duty (Title 10) - full-time duty in the Armed Forces, such as unit deployment during war, including travel to and from such duty, except active duty for training, OR

            · Full-time National Guard duty (Title 32) – duty performed for which you are entitled to receive pay from the Federal government, such as responding to a national emergency or performing duties as an Active Guard Reserve (AGR) member

            In general, active service means full-time service, other than active duty for training, as a member of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps or Coast Guard.

            PS...I work with USDOL VETS and the VA everyday as I am asked this question often by returning Vets.
            Last edited by Chris36; April 9th, 2014, 10:14 AM.

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            • #7
              Thanks Chris, I've seen this before actually. I'm not disputing my ineligibility, I totally understand that now ( I didn't when I first applied for the COE though). I am just confused why I was issued a COE if I am not eligible and if this is common. I mean I have spent a lot of effort and resources (home inspection paid for, made arrangements with moving company, paid an early termination fee on my current apartment lease and requested the time off for the move) into purchasing a home I am now contracted on. I have a pre-approval letter from my lender stating a VA loan, I have a "valid" COE from the VA but after digging I can tell I really am not eligible at all. What's worse is that nobody from the bank or VA has said a peep about me being ineligible and everything is moving forward as if I am. I'm expecting the underwriter to reach out to me here soon to tell me there is a problem but I'm just a little ticked that this far in the process this hasn't happened yet. I'm not sure if I'm more mad at myself for not researching the eligibility more once I received the COE or the lender/VA for not vetting the eligibility early on.
              This is where I originally looked at the eligibility requirements (note it doesn't mention active duty for training)

              http://www.benefits.va.gov/HOMELOANS...ligibility.asp

              And from there I followed the link to the eBenefits site to apply for the COE which was instantly issued to me after logging in with my CAC.

              I'll suck it up and carry on just felt like I needed to vent. Thank you for the insight.

              Comment


              • #8
                I'm not sure how to explain it any differently; yes, you got your COE instantly because you qualify for a VA loan on the minimum requirement (like being 'eligible for enlistment by applying and taking the ASVAB or filling out the 3 questions on the Guard website...much more is involved with MEPS to actually get in) but to be fully approved for the monies, ie. VA guaranty, you have to meet additional criteria as in your "active duty" time could not be due only to training. It is unfortunate you have already made all of the other arrangements but this is a case of buyer beware; if your bank is keeping mum about your VA eligibility it's becuase they want you to sign on the dotted line regardless of VA being involved or not. Once you sign, you're hooked. They should absolutely make that less vague on the site becuase what is implied is that if you are eligible for a COE certificate that it means you are eligible for the loan guaranty through the VA and, unfortunately, they are two different things. If the bank and underwriter are pushing forward despite your concerns, this could be a red flag to you regarding their customer service in the future. What if you are deployed? What if there are mortgage issues while you are away or with your pay paying the mortgage? If this company seems disinterested in your issues now, how will they serve you when you are really in need? I would do more research and READ EVERYTHING before you sign anything. Just my .02

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Chris36 View Post
                  I'm not sure how to explain it any differently; yes, you got your COE instantly because you qualify for a VA loan on the minimum requirement (like being 'eligible for enlistment by applying and taking the ASVAB or filling out the 3 questions on the Guard website...much more is involved with MEPS to actually get in) but to be fully approved for the monies, ie. VA guaranty, you have to meet additional criteria as in your "active duty" time could not be due only to training. It is unfortunate you have already made all of the other arrangements but this is a case of buyer beware; if your bank is keeping mum about your VA eligibility it's becuase they want you to sign on the dotted line regardless of VA being involved or not. Once you sign, you're hooked. They should absolutely make that less vague on the site becuase what is implied is that if you are eligible for a COE certificate that it means you are eligible for the loan guaranty through the VA and, unfortunately, they are two different things. If the bank and underwriter are pushing forward despite your concerns, this could be a red flag to you regarding their customer service in the future. What if you are deployed? What if there are mortgage issues while you are away or with your pay paying the mortgage? If this company seems disinterested in your issues now, how will they serve you when you are really in need? I would do more research and READ EVERYTHING before you sign anything. Just my .02
                  I'm not sure that is the case with this COE, it clearly states that I am eligible, I'll copy and paste what it states from the COE I was granted;

                  THIS VETERAN'S BASIC ENTITLEMENT IS $36,000* TOTAL ENTITLEMENT CHARGED TO PREVIOUS VA LOANS IS $0*
                  The veteran is eligible for the benefits of Chapter 37, Title 38, U.S. Code, subject to any condition(s) cited below. Basic entitlement for veterans who have not previously used home loan benefits is $36,000. Additional entitlement is available for most loans in excess of $144,000. In such cases, the entitlement amount is 25% of the VA loan limit for the county where the property is located. VA county loan limits are adjusted annually, and the current limits are available at www.benefits.va.gov/homeloans.

                  But in any case like I said, I'll just take it as a lesson learned, suck up my losses and move on. Thank you!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    That is a general COE eligibility letter provided to first time users of the VA loan. I have used the VA for my house in Tennessee and then when I sold it; I was given that type of notice again. But there are Soldiers that use a second VA loan for a second house which meets loan requirements. I have used my VA loan again for my home in Colorado. Also, remember the definition of Veteran which AR/NG Soldiers who have never deployed; never earn the title of Veteran, so this is a good bennie for the NG/AR Soldier who just served on m-day status for six years and trust me, I meet those types constantly.

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                    • #11
                      That's not true, even with a National Guard soldier who has never deployed, the federal government (in regards to utilizing federal benefits) considers them (they earn the title) 'Veteran' after 180 days of active duty service, deployment or not. So it may take an M-Day soldier longer to utilize their federal benefts but they are still eventually considered a Veteran by the feds in terms of utilizing the federal benefits. State laws and benefits normally consider a service member a Veteran (for the use of State benefits) after only 90 days. I get this question daily from soldiers who have been in long enough to be considered a Veteran by even the federal government but were told by other soldiers that if they are a 'slick sleeve' they've never earned that title and that is just not true.

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                      • #12
                        What benefits are you referring to? I think you might be thinking of the VA's definition compared to the Federal Government http://www.military.com/benefits/201...an-status.html Also, states had their different interpretations of the term Veteran as well. To be blunt, since the OP has not served on title 10 active duty or served his required part-time contract, he is not considered a veteran. I was referring to the OP in this situation. http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=41.04.007 http://sudbury.ma.us/services/individual_faq.asp?id=219 Based on your service, do you consider yourself a veteran? Or do you based on certain definitions and interpretations of it?

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                        • #13
                          Slick sleeve has nothing to do with it because there are many Soldiers that are slick sleeved and are definition based on their title 10 time. But again, by the VA's definition, a reservist is considered a Veteran after their six years of honorable service but by federal definition (by the link I provided above) are not. Current legislation is trying to give the NG/AR grey-area or reserve retiree Veteran status.

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                          • #14
                            Are you having issues editing and submitting posts? I am.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Are you saying that the military dot com article that starts out as "TOM PHILPOTT | Feb 07, 2013 New Push to Make ‘Veterans’ of 200,000 Reserve Retirees Lt. Cmdr. Jack Townsend, a Navy Reserve retiree in Richmond, Va., first became aware a decade ago that he wasn’t considered a military “veteran” under federal law. It’s been bothering him ever since" is inccorect?

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