VA loans

VA Loan Fees: Your Most Common Questions and Answers

January 25, 2013

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VA Loan Fees: Your Most Common Questions and Answers

When a borrower has found the perfect home, has made an offer, and the seller has accepted, the VA loan process moves into the phase where things start moving toward the closing date.

Once the borrower’s loan has been approved and the commitments have been made, there have likely already been a few fees paid or about to be paid as part of the process. What can a buyer expect in terms of fees when purchasing a home with a VA loan? Here are some commonly asked questions and the answer to those questions about VA loan fees.

I Understand The VA Appraisal Is Mandatory. Who Pays For This Appraisal?

According to the VA loan rulebook, “The veteran can pay the fee of a VA appraiser and VA compliance inspectors.”

What Is A Compliance Inspection?

If a VA appraiser requires repairs, corrections or other alterations to a home as a condition of VA loan approval, those changes are often required to be inspected as a condition of the loan. The compliance inspection is that process.

Can A Borrower Request A Second Appraisal?

VA loan rules allow, in some cases, an appraisal to be appealed. This is not permitted simply because the borrower or lender disagrees with the outcome of an appraisal and wants a more beneficial result. That said, VA loan rules state, “The veteran can also pay for a second appraisal if he or she is requesting reconsideration of value.” Additionally, the rules say, “The veteran cannot pay for an appraisal requested by the lender or seller for reconsideration of value” and “The veteran cannot pay for appraisals requested by parties other than the veteran or lender.”

Do I Have To Pay A Fee For The Lender To Pull My Credit Report?

VA loan rules permit the lender to charge the borrower for any associated fees for credit reports–however, they can only charge the actual amount of the cost for those reports.

Will I Be Charged For A Flood Zone Determination?

It is possible to be charged for a flood zone determination, but VA has specific guidelines for how this can happen. “The veteran can pay the actual amount charged for a determination of whether a property is in a special flood hazard area, if made by a third party who guarantees the accuracy of the determination. The veteran can pay a charge for a life-of-the-loan flood determination service purchased at the time of loan origination. A fee may not be charged for a flood zone determination made by the lender or a VA appraiser.”

Will I Be Charged For A Title Examination?

VA loan rules say the borrower may be charged for a title examination and title insurance if required. The rules also say “If the lender decides that an environmental protection lien endorsement to a title policy is needed, the cost of the endorsement may be charged to the veteran.”

These are just a few of the VA rules for fees–we’ll cover more of the rules in future blog posts.

 

2 Comments
  1. steve

    I am interested in a house that has a tax value of 127,000 but because of the needed repairs it is listed for 60,000 so I don't know if it would pass a inspection Can I still do a VA loan

    • Joe Wallace

      VA loans require the property to either meet VA minimum property standards or be brought into compliance based on the recommendations of a VA assigned fee appraiser. The repairs mentioned in the appraisal report would be required as a condition of loan approval unless otherwise noted by the appraiser.

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