You know that VA home loans are an incredible benefit for veterans and active-duty military personnel. But are National Guard members and reservists eligible as well? The answer is yes for those who meet certain criteria and who have completed at least six years of honorable service, are mobilized for active duty service for a period of at least 90 days, or who have been discharged because of a service-connected disability.

Many reservists and guard members who meet these requirements and are eligible for this valuable home financing resource aren’t aware that they qualify. But it’s important to check, because National Guard members and Reservists earn the same great VA loan benefits as active duty service members and veterans, with only slight exceptions.

VA loans are mortgages issued by VA-approved lenders and guaranteed by the federal government. This exclusive benefit is offered to eligible service members, veterans, and some military spouses to buy a new home with no money down or to refinance. Guardsmen and Reservists may qualify for a VA loan after meeting different eligibility requirements, particularly regarding time in service. These members typically need at least six years of service as well as these other qualifications:

  • Honorably discharged
  • Retired
  • Transferred to Standby Reserve or Ready Reserve after an honorable discharge
  • Served or serves in the Selected Reserve (with the six years of service requirement)
  • Released from service due to a service-related disability

After meeting the necessary requirements, the next step is obtaining a Certificate of Eligibility (COE). The COE is an important step in securing your VA home loan as it verifies the length and character of service. A Certificate of Eligibility should be requested as soon as the decision to buy a home is made as the processing times vary depending on the VA’s workload. The average processing time is within 4-6 weeks. Guardsmen and Reservists may request the COE by submitting VA Form 26-1880. The COE never expires, unless it was obtained while on active duty. If so, veterans must request a new COE after leaving active service.

Veterans and those who are serving or who have served our country deserve the home of their dreams. Our mission is to help them understand and use their VA benefits to accomplish their home-buying goals. Let our team of experienced VA mortgage professionals show you how easy a VA home loan can be to obtain. Visit us online to get started: