VA Joint Loans: A Reader QuestionA reader asks, “My father (who is a veteran) lives with me, never did use a VA loan. Recently we talked about buying a house, he gets a Social Security check every month but I am the one who works so I am the one who takes care of all the expenses.”
“Basically what I am asking is, could we go on the loan together, he does get income but of course with it being fixed income it may be better if I showed mine as well, is this possible.”
VA loan rules permit a qualified borrower to apply with a non-veteran who is not a spouse in an arrangement called a VA joint loan.
When it comes to credit, the shortcomings of one borrower can’t be compensated for by the other borrower, the veteran can’t take a disproportional amount of financial responsibility for the new loan, and the veteran borrower’s entitlement is limited to his or her portion of the loan amount.
That means the lender may require the non-veteran borrower to make a down payment (depending on circumstances) and while employment and income factors may be more flexible than the credit qualifying factors, lender standards also apply.
In cases like these, it may be good to get some pre-purchase counseling from a HUD approved counseling agency AND speak to the VA directly about options that might be available to a veteran and family member who want to apply for a loan together.
Some of the most important things an otherwise qualified borrower can do to prepare for a VA joint loan is to make sure 12 months of on time payments are on the books before you apply for all financial obligations, and make sure your debt to income ratio is as low as possible (for both applicants).
Speak to a VA representative by calling 1-800 827-1000 for more information on VA joint loans or discuss your needs with a loan officer.
Do you have questions about VA home loans? Ask us in the comments section.