Salute to Freedom

Jane Gray
Jane Gray
Published on November 9, 2017

Once a year, we honor and thank those who’ve served our country through military service.  The freedoms we share don’t come cheap.  Whether a veteran served in times of war or times of peace, he or she performed functions that ensured that American ideals were upheld.

In America, we have had a checkered past of financial and moral support for our veterans.  In researching this post I discovered that many Revolutionary War veterans served in unpaid capacities and were bestowed a “pension” of cattle when their service ended which created a lot of angst amongst those who had served faithfully. Lincoln promoted better support systems for those who served in the Civil War which resulted in the establishment of a meager but elemental beginning of financial pensions to the nation’s veterans.  Despite the large number of WWI veterans returning from the war with needs, not much had changed.  The landmark shift came when Congress passed the G.I. Bill of Rights after WWII which provided easy access to education, health care, and mortgages.

The VA mortgage is one of the best benefits for service members in that it usually has the lowest interest rate and doesn’t require the veteran to put any money down unless the purchase price is over the county limit (for Placer County, the limit is $488,750).  The VA loan program has earned both deserved and un-deserved enmity over what might be termed over-regulating. VA loans, being that they are guaranteed by the government, come with special requirements and some of the most egregious issues have been challenged and cleared up.

For Buyers who are veterans, the VA Mortgage offers some great perks, but it’s important to have a military-friendly Agent AND Lender who has experience with getting VA buyers into homes starting with ensuring that you get your offer accepted.  Here are the TOP 3 important guidelines to keep in mind when shopping for a home with a VA Loan in a Seller’s Market:

  1. Don’t pick a home that needs a lot of repairs. The VA loan is designed to put veterans into homes that are move-in ready, safe, and structurally sound so homes must meet a minimum set of requirements.
  2. Be willing to pay some of the costs. It’s true that the VA doesn’t require a vet to pay pest inspection or repairs but let’s remember that this is a Seller’s market and offering to pitch in to cover some costs can turn the tables in favor of acceptance of an offer.
  3. Consider putting more skin in the game. The VA doesn’t require a down payment which is unique, but having monies available to make up the difference if the appraisal comes up short may be the difference between being a home owner and a home seeker.

There’s a lot more overhead that goes into getting a VA Buyer accepted in the current market, but it’s worth it.  I served as a Russian linguist in the USAF and I’ve got a BIG heart for veterans.  I go the extra mile to help my veteran buyers and I’ve been known to pitch in to remediate issues that the VA appraiser called out to get the Veteran into their own abode.

Let’s chat about what your real estate dreams and goals are to see how we can make them come true!

Thank you to all who served our country!  I salute you!  Whether you’ve served or not, thank a Vet!  Your civil liberties of free speech and our legal systems with due process in this country make us a unique beacon of opportunity and are entirely due to the people who fought (or stood up) to preserve them.  I’ve lived in another country where corruption was rampant and traveled to other countries where free speech could land you in jail.  It reinforced the importance of individual rights and makes me proud to be an American – no matter how divided we’ve become, remember:  United we stand.  We are the United States of America.  Diverse and strong.

Note:  Our local Keller Williams Realty office is looking to help veterans who need a helping hand or veteran organizations that may need some help.  Please email me to let me know of an opportunity for us to lend a helping hand.

Salute to Freedom
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