Veterans United Mortgage Review

About Veterans United Home Loans

Veterans United Home Loans

Veterans United Home Loans is the nation's leading dedicated provider of VA Loans and has helped tens of thousands of military families and veterans purchase the home of their dreams. Our VA mortgage specialists make the home buying process easy and hassle free while securing the best possible loan options available for you. Even better, our experts have streamlined the VA Loan process, ensuring quick and on-time closings. So don't wait, get started with Veterans United today. NMLS 1907.

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Recommended
99%
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What is Veterans United?

Veterans United was founded in 2002 and is headquartered in Columbia, Missouri. It caters specifically to members of the military and their families. It is backed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to provide home loans and financing to military veterans and their families; and in fiscal year 2018, it provided more VA home loans by volume than any other lender.

In 2018, Veterans United provided $10.44 billion in mortgages. Its website offers guides to homeownership and refinancing, and potential borrowers can begin their application process online through a customer portal that gives clients the opportunity to work through much of the homebuying process digitally, in conjunction with the personal attention of a Veterans United loan officer.


Working with Veterans United

Veterans United is licensed in 49 states (the exception is New Hampshire) and the District of Columbia.

Veterans United has 26 locations with loan officers present. These loan officers assist potential borrowers, guiding them through the homebuying process from preapproval to final closing. Similar to many VA-backed financial institutions, Veterans United requires a minimum credit score of 620 to be approved for a home loan.

Borrowers with lower credit scores, lack of credit history or recent bankruptcies or those facing other unfavorable financial circumstances should also keep in mind that Veterans United offers manual underwriting services, which may help them achieve their goal of homeownership. Manual underwriting is conducted by a person, rather than through an automated, computer-driven process. By opting for the manual underwriting process, applicants can explain any extenuating circumstances or reasons for their less-than-perfect financial histories.

Veterans United issues loans for the following types of properties:

  • Single-family homes
  • Multi-family homes
  • Manufactured homes (in certain cases)
  • Condominiums (in VA-approved developments)
  • Modular homes
  • New construction (with some restrictions)

All properties must be owner-occupied, as Veterans United does not offer financing for investment properties, non-residential properties or unimproved land. Additionally, all properties must be located within the U.S. or its territories, including Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, Northern Mariana Islands and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Borrowers should note that, while Veterans United offers loans for new construction, it specifically points out that it is uncommon for lenders to approve new construction loans. Rather, it says, it’s more common to approach a builder directly for a loan and then refinance it into the VA program.

Additionally, it may be difficult to get financing for a manufactured home as these properties rarely appreciate in value over time, making them an undesirable investment for lenders. But Veterans United does provide loans for manufactured homes in certain cases.


Veterans United products

Purchase

Veterans United offers $0 down payment mortgages to current active-duty members and veterans of the U.S. military, National Guard and reserves, as well as surviving spouses. These VA loans are backed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and distributed through private lenders, such as Veterans United.

VA loans do not require private mortgage insurance and, due to their government-backing, are generally easier to qualify for than conventional mortgages.

Refinance

Veterans United also offers refinancing options for qualified veterans and active-duty military members through the use of two VA refinancing programs: the VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan (IRRRL), also known as the VA Streamline Refinance, and the cash-out refinance. Both of these programs allow qualifying members to lower their mortgage interest rates and reduce their monthly payments by taking out a new mortgage with a lower market interest rate.

VA Streamline (IRRRL) Refinance

The VA Streamline (IRRRL) Refinance program boasts little-to-no out-of-pocket costs required of applicants, as well as minimal paperwork, allowing for a speedy refinancing process. Some refinancings do not require appraisals or additional Certificates of Eligibility, making them favorable options for someone who already holds a VA loan but is looking to reduce their monthly mortgage payments with little hassle.

Cash-Out Refinance

The cash-out refinance program allows veterans who already hold a VA loan the option to refinance into a loan with a lower interest rate, with the added opportunity to withdraw cash from the property’s equity. This cash is often used to invest in home improvements, pay for emergency expenses, cover college tuition or pay off debts. Borrowers applying for a cash-out refinance should keep in mind that, unlike with a VA Streamline Refinance, they will have to pay closing costs up front, which on average run 3% to 5% of the total loan amount.

Veterans United also offers credit-repair programs for those with low credit scores or little credit history. Representatives will work one-on-one with applicants who can learn how to boost their credit scores to help them qualify for VA loans.


The mortgage application process

Homebuyers can manage some of the mortgage application process online, with the ability to upload most, but not all, of their documents into the Veterans United customer portal. This can help borrowers save time by handling their documents on their own, rather than waiting to get in touch with someone on the phone or in person.

How to apply. Borrowers should begin the homebuying process by getting preapproved for a VA loan. This is crucial as borrowers can gain insight into how large of a mortgage they’ll be able to take out. This also helps to show sellers and real estate agents that borrowers are ready to buy. Prospective homebuyers should get in touch with a Veterans United loan officer to begin the preapproval process.

Disclosure process. Applicants can submit documents to Veterans United through the company’s secure online portal, which is the most common method, or by email or regular mail.

Submitting loan for approval. Borrowers communicate directly with a Veterans United loan officer to submit a loan for approval. This takes place after an appraisal has been conducted and an applicant has submitted documents for underwriting. These documents include financial statements, employment status and other forms that will prove a borrower is able to pay back a loan.

Final approval. A borrower will receive final approval for a home after they have met underwriting conditions. After the underwriter has approved an application, Veterans United will issue a “clear to close.”

Closing. Borrowers can choose the time and place of the closing. Veterans United recommends borrowers stay in communication with their loan officers to discuss drafting a contract to establish the time and place for closing. This contract should establish your right to a final walk-through of the property in the last 24 hours before closing. Then the real estate agent and Veterans United will inform the borrower whether applicants need to bring any payment to the closing process. These payments are usually required to be made by verified wire transfers or a cashier’s check, rather than a personal check. At closing, borrowers will then sign several documents, including the closing disclosure, promissory note, mortgage or deed of trust, warranty and multiple government documents.

Communication during the process

Borrowers should turn to their Veterans United loan officer as their point of contact during the homebuying process. Additionally, borrowers can upload and check on their documents through the Veterans United online customer portal to ensure the mortgage application process goes smoothly.


Pros and cons of a Veterans United mortgage

Pros

  • Offers one-on-one credit counseling and other homebuying education resources
  • Specifically caters to military veterans and their families
  • VA loans offered with $0 down payment
  • Borrowers with credit scores as low as 620 may qualify
  • Website offers client portal for communication and uploading documents
  • Website provides detailed information, blog posts and videos on the homebuying process

Cons

  • Online portal does not allow clients to sync their financial accounts so Veterans United  can access their financial data directly; although, at the time of publication, VU was planning a pilot program to start offering this service
  • Investment properties and undeveloped land are not eligible for loans

Editorial Note: Parts of this article were reviewed by a lender to ensure accuracy prior to publication. The overall conclusions, recommendations and opinions are the author’s alone.

The information in this article is accurate as of the date of publishing.