Can a Veteran and Fiancé Get a VA Loan Together?
There are many different circumstances under which you can get a VA loan. Some veterans apply for the loan by themselves without a co-borrower or co-applicant. Others want to apply for a VA loan with one or more fellow veterans, and others still want to get a home with a non-veteran.
Spouses often apply for a VA mortgage loan together, and some wonder if VA loans are available to a veteran and a spouse who is not a fellow vet. The answer to this question is yes–spouses are treated equally on the VA loan application, unlike other VA loan scenarios between veteran applicants and non-veterans.
But what if the veteran and soon-to-be-spouse aren’t legally married at the time of VA loan application? Do VA loan rules permit them to be treated the same as a married couple, or do the unmarried (but engaged to be married) vet and fiancé have to apply for a VA joint loan where the non-veteran’s portion of the mortgage isn’t guaranteed by the VA loan?
VA loan rules in the VA Lender’s Handbook address this situation in Chapter Seven under the heading, “Joint Loans.” Chapter Seven says that a veteran and fiancé can apply for the VA loan together and be treated the same as a married couple–but the loan’s approval depends on the couple becoming legally married.
“A loan to a veteran and fiancé who intend to marry prior to loan closing and take title as veteran and spouse will be treated as a loan to a veteran and spouse (conditioned upon their marriage), and not a joint loan.”
Since joint loans only insure the veteran’s portion of the loan, they are reserved for situations where the veteran is applying with one or more non-vets. In the case of an engaged couple or one that is already married, VA loan rules state that the two applicants are to be recognized equally based on the couple’s legally married status. The procedures for handling joint loans differs from those for married couples, so this rule is an important one:
“Any joint loan for which the veteran will hold title to the property and any person other than the veteran’s spouse must be submitted [to the VA] for prior approval. Any loan for which the veteran and the veteran’s spouse will hold title to the property, whether or not the spouse also uses entitlement, may be closed automatically by a lender with automatic authority.”
Do you have questions about VA home loans? Ask us in the comments section.