Part 2 of Annual “Freebies” - VA Resources

Written By: Stacey Sprain, Op-Ed Writer

One of the things I like to do at the start of each New Year is provide what I refer to as my lists of “freebies.” These are lists of websites and resources that have helped me over the years in one way or another and that often provide ongoing information that is helpful and informative on an ongoing basis. This week I offer my list of favorite VA resources. These are websites and resources that I have saved to my internet favorites list as well as desktop icons that I access frequently. Be sure to check these out, familiarize yourselves with the content and determine how these free resources might help you work more efficiently in 2012!

Need FHA Training? CLICK HERE:

VA Loan Limits:
This site provides information on current and prior year archived loan limits information for VA-guaranteed home loans.

VA Home Loan Eligibility Site:
This site summarizes veteran service requirements for home loan eligibility as well as includes FAQ about home loan eligibility.

VA Appraisal Information:
VA appraisals are not requested through any AMC but rather are requested by users with registered access to the Veteran’s Information Portal (VIP). The contents of this VA appraisal page provide great information about the process for requesting a VA appraisal, provides the list of VA-allowable appraisal charges by VA-approved appraisers, provides FAQ, as well as a list of state-specific property requirements above and beyond typical VA property requirements.

Need FHA Training? CLICK HERE:

VA Lenders Handbook:
Say what you want about the lack of detail given for underwriting specifics by Veterans Affairs but the VA Lenders Handbook is still one of the best organized underwriting manuals around! Be sure to click on the Current Issues Chapter at the beginning of the Handbook chapter links to read about current issues on interest.

VA Construction and Valuation Policies, Procedures and Methods Manual:
This is where you can learn everything the appraisers learn about properties that are to be VA-guaranteed with the home loan program!

VA Circulars:
Circulars are communications from Veterans Affairs regarding new, announcements, guideline and policy changes relevant to veteran home loans and the home loan program. You’ll find current and archived Circular links at this site.

VA Training Opportunities:
Veterans Affairs offers live broadcasts on various home loan-related topics throughout the year which you will find listed at this site. Unfortunately they do not offer registration instructions or calendar invites so you will need to check this site periodically and manually add the training information to your calendar. All broadcasts air at 12:00 noon eastern standard time and can be viewed on the web- the catch is that you have to remember to refer to this website the morning of each session for the login and call in information so you can participate. Note upcoming broadcasts scheduled for January, March, May, June and July! You can access the archived broadcasts and materials at this site as well.

Need FHA Training? CLICK HERE:

VA Approved Condominium Project Search:
Customize search criteria to determine whether or not condominium projects have been reviewed and approved by Veterans Affairs. Remember that your VA Regional Loan Center must issue an approval ID on each project you intend to lend in.

VA-Registered Builder Search:
Customize search criteria to determine whether or not the builder of newly constructed, proposed or under construction property is already registered on file with VA and it may save you from having to gather added documentation for your loan!

VA Regional Loan Centers:
This page provides a listing of VA Regional Loan Centers with the states included under each jurisdiction, the websites and main phone numbers for each RLC. Make sure you check your lock RLC website frequently and are familiar with the content offered because several of the RLCs offer subscription options, training materials, live training opportunities and contacts for their loan production (underwriting), eligibility and construction/valuation departments.

VA Home Loan Frequently Asked Questions:
Here you’ll find FAQs organized by category.

VA Forms Search:
Has your underwriter conditioned you for a form you’ve never heard of? This is where you can search for either by common name or VA form number.

Need FHA Training? CLICK HERE:

Lastly, don’t forget to follow VA on Facebook, Flickr, Twitter and YouTube

Be sure to save all of these VA websites to your internet favorites for easy access when you need it!

About The Author

Stacey Sprain - As an op-ed writer, Ms. Stacey Sprain is currently a NAMP® Certified Ambassador Loan Processor (NAMP®-CALP). With over 15+ years of mortgage banking experience, Stacey is also a Quality Control Manager for a major mortgage lending institution. 

Opinion-Editorial (Op-Ed) Disclaimer For NAMP® Library Articles: The views and opinions expressed in the NAMP® Library articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect any official NAMP® policy or position. Examples of analysis performed within this article are only examples. They should not be utilized in real-world application as they are based only on very limited and dated open source information. Assumptions made within the analysis are not reflective of the position of NAMP®. Nothing contained in this article should be considered legal advice.