Articles and news about VA loans and HUD requirements. VA loans are a great way to buy a home with no down payment.

VA Loan Reader Questions: Siding, Drywall, and other Appraisal Issues

A reader asks, “I’ve found a home in foreclosure at what I feel to be fair or even better.  However there are two places at the base of the siding which have slight rot going up an inch or two.  Also one corner eave joint has the same.  Structurally the home is sound, cosmetically these areas slightly noticeable but apparent if one is inspecting.”

“Obviously the bank will not do or allow repairs that I know of.  Is this a deal breaker?  I would repair this eventually especially if the VA made it a stipulation upon purchase, is that even an option if these discrepancies are a problem?  Oh, one more thing, a baseball size hole is in the dry wall of one room. Easy fix but hard to miss.  Problem?

Issues such as these that might cause a VA appraiser to require corrections or repairs aren’t necessarily a deal breaker when examining the rules strictly from a VA minimum property standards viewpoint. But the VA rules are not the only ones that can affect situations such as these.

Borrowers should know that when applying for a VA home loan, local, city and state building codes and ordinances are also s factor in any appraisal. VA minimum property requirements defer to these codes for a great many things–a local code may supercede the VA MPRs when a higher standard is enforced outside the VA requirements. For example, the Department of Veterans Affairs does not make specific rules about safety issues such as asbestos–it merely requires the home to be safe and within existing codes and requirements. The VA does not need to add specific rules about asbestos because there are already federal standards.

VA appraisers don’t simply look to insure the VA MPRs are met–any issue detected that does not come into compliance with applicable code may be listed as a required correction or repair.

Borrowers curious about specific issues that could be in violation of building codes should check with appropriate local authority first, then contact the Department of Veterans Affairs if further guidance is needed.

Do you have questions about the VA home loan? Ask us in the comments section.

About Joe Wallace

Joe Wallace has been specializing in military and personal finance topics since 1995. His work has appeared on Air Force Television News, The Pentagon Channel, ABC and a variety of print and online publications. He is a 13-year Air Force veteran and a member of the Air Force Public Affairs Alumni Association.

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