Is it Possible to Acquire a VA Home Loan Despite Having Poor Credit?

Is it Possible to Acquire a VA Home Loan Despite Having Poor Credit?

Borrowers who have experienced financial difficulties in the past may discover that getting approved for a VA home loan with bad credit is simpler than they initially anticipated. The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will even guarantee mortgages for veterans with major credit problems, such as bankruptcies and foreclosures, in recognition of the fact that some active-duty and retired service members face financial challenges that civilians do not. These challenges include the inability to save for retirement.

  • Is it feasible to acquire a loan from the VA even if you have a low credit score?
  • Loan options available to veterans with less-than-perfect credit ratings
  • How loans for those with negative credit from the VA compare to other lending programs
  • VA loans and the record of your CAIVRS participation

Is it feasible to acquire a loan from the VA even if you have a low credit score?

Simply said, the answer is yes. The specific requirements of military borrowers were taken into consideration when developing the rules for the VA. Military families might occasionally find themselves in further financial trouble as a result of the disruption caused by combat deployments and the transition back to civilian life after active-duty service.

The following is a list of some of the credit options that are accessible to borrowers with a VA benefit:

No minimum credit score:

There is no minimum credit score that is required by the VA; nevertheless, the majority of lenders want a score of 620 or above. On the other hand, your payment history from the previous year and a half, particularly your rent or mortgage payments, will be carefully examined. If you can provide explanations or verification of active-duty deployments or disability-related health issues, you may be able to overcome a bad payment history that appears on your credit report.


After filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, there is a waiting period of two years.

The Department of Veterans Affairs is attentive to service-related difficulties that may lead to individuals filing for bankruptcy. Borrowers in the military only have to wait two years from the day they were discharged from bankruptcy before they can qualify for a new VA loan (compared with four years for a conventional loan).

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One year’s worth of payments for a Chapter 13 bankruptcy or counseling sessions for credit.

Borrowers with an existing VA loan who have completed a Chapter 13 bankruptcy or a credit counseling program and have made 12 monthly payments on time may be eligible for a new VA loan.
After a foreclosure, there is a waiting period of two years. After a waiting period of two years following the foreclosure sale of their previous property, military borrowers who wish to apply for a VA loan may do so.

Freedom of choice for VA foreclosures:

Borrowers with a previously foreclosed VA loan on their certificate of eligibility are still eligible to apply for a new loan via the VA. If you still have a sufficient amount of VA entitlement, you could be able to buy a new house without making a down payment if you qualify.
There is no history of credit. It’s possible that returning service members won’t have a long enough payment history to qualify for a typical credit score. In this scenario, VA lenders might take into consideration past payment histories for rent, utilities, auto insurance, and other alternative payments when making an approval decision.

Residual income.

The Veterans Administration makes use of a one-of-a-kind formula that is based on the amount of disposable income you have each month after deducting monthly expenses such as the cost of maintaining your home. If you have money left over at the end of each month after paying all of your bills, this is referred to as “residual income,” and it can help determine whether or not you are eligible for a VA loan even if you have poor credit.

Loan options available to veterans with less-than-perfect credit ratings

The credit requirements for a VA loan with terrible credit are, for all intents and purposes, the same regardless of whether you are refinancing or purchasing a property. Available VA loans kinds include:

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Borrowers who have served in the military and have a poor credit history may be eligible for a mortgage with no down payment and no mortgage insurance (a type of insurance charged on most home loans if you make less than a 20 percent down payment). In the event that your credit scores are low, lenders will pay particular attention to the manner in which you have paid your rent and other expenses over the course of the previous year.


Veterans Affairs (VA) loans allow homeowners to borrow up to 90 percent of the value of their house, giving them access to additional equity that can be used for home improvements or to pay off high-interest credit accounts. A cash-out refinance offered by the VA can be used to pay off credit card debt, which can raise your credit ratings and eliminate the need for a mortgage for people with poor credit in the future.


To be eligible for a VA IRRRL, borrowers who already have a VA loan need merely demonstrate that they have paid all of their payments on time during the course of the previous year. There is no requirement for a home appraisal, and income documentation and closing expenses can be incorporated into the loan amount if desired. Even if you were late on a recent mortgage payment by 30 days, your lender may still authorize an IRRRL by submitting your loan to the VA for approval. This is done by submitting your loan information directly to the VA.

Noteworthy information regarding VA closing costs and having poor credit

Your likelihood of not paying back your loan increases in proportion to the number of points deducted from your credit score. Lenders evaluate the risk involved by imposing a higher interest rate on the loan. Because of these two factors, having poor credit can make it more difficult to obtain a loan from the VA.

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The percentage of your loan that can be charged for closing fees by the lender is regulated at 1 percent. If you have a low credit score, your interest rate may come with discount points, which might cause your total charges to surpass the one percent cap that the VA places on total lender fees. If this is the case, it’s possible that you won’t be eligible for VA financing.

A breakeven on the closing costs is required to be reached after 36 months for VA refinance loans. In order to be eligible for a VA refinance, the lender needs to demonstrate that you will reach the point of break-even on your closing expenses within the first 36 months of the loan. To determine when you have reached breakeven, divide your total costs by the amount of money you save each month. It is possible that you will be denied eligibility for a VA refinance if the high discount points charged owing to poor credit cause you to go over this time frame.

VA loans and the record of your CAIVRS participation

The Credit Alert Interactive Verification Reporting System, often known as CAIVRS, is a database that lenders use in order to look for any instances of defaults on loans that have been helped by the federal government. Overpayments for education benefits, disability benefits, or claims for foreclosure made by the VA are the basis for the collection of this information.

In the event that your CAIVRS history is unclear, you may have a difficult time obtaining authorized for a mortgage that is backed by the government. However, if a past-due account has been brought up to date or if you have made on-time payments as part of a repayment agreement, VA lenders may be able to make an exception to this rule.

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