I had a rather nice conversation with Brian yesterday concerning his article on VA Loans. I originally intended to re-blog this post sooner but wanted to touch base with him first. My family has been playing the 'who is really sick and who is just a little sick' game this week. Last night I was the winner! It has taken me most of the day today just to get my 'pretend to be human' face back on.
Most lenders in my area have access to VA loan products. When I did a quick informal survey this afternoon, I was surprised to learn that even though their company offered VA, many agents have not learned to work them.
This is where my new friend Brian gets to help me look good. He is willing to help any service personnel that want to purchase in my lovely state. I feel extremely fortunate to be able to call on him to help me help my military clients. Missouri has a good supply of homes on the market that would be just perfect for the program. Give me a call to set a time to meet.- I am sure we are going to see the numbers for Missouri closely match those of his home state of CAL. cheryl
Close to 78% of the listed homes, in Southern California, fall under the VA loan limit. The 2009 loan limits, for the California counties are well over the original $144,000 of a few years ago. In fact, the VA loan limit is over $1,000,000 for some San Francisco metro counties and close to $730,000 for Orange and LA counties. You can see all the new VA loan limits, for 2009 here.
But the worsening U.S. economy is not dissuading buyers with bargain home prices in their sights, although the latest figures represent homes that closed escrow in October on sales that were initiated probably as far back as August.
Statewide home sales jumped nearly 64 percent from a year ago to 42,293 and nearly 5 percent from September.
Almost one in eleven adults, residing in California, is a veteran. VA home loan guaranty eligibility is determined by service period. Virtually everyone who served from 1975 on is eligible for a VA home loan. This means that almost all the veterans, under the age of 50, are eligible for VA financing (click the link for restrictions).
This represents a tremendous opportunity for California REALTORS, in 2009. The collapse of jumbo financing leaves no low downpayment loans for loan amounts above $625,000. I think that financing vacuum will lead to inevitable collapse of the $700,000 to $1,000,000 price point in California, next year. As stated-income, jumbo ARMs adjust, there will be little to no financing alternatives for those strapped homeowners. Expect foreclosures to increase in that price range, driving down prices. A qualified veteran can swoop up some of those bargains.
Where can you find veterans who might want to buy a home?
1- Find them on meetup and offer to speak to them. (If you happen to sell in the OC, you can meet the real military women of the OC here)
2- Set an appointment with the HR representative of one of the VA healthcare systems near you. Oftentimes, veterans work at these centers using the skills they learned in the service.
3- There are over 450 American Legion posts in California. Find five near you and post flyers on their bulletin board (ask me for a copy of mine). Offer to speak at their meetings.
4- There are about 300 VFW posts in California. Post the same flyer at five near you.
5- Talk to everyone you know and ask them if they know any veterans. Don't worry about whether they own a home or not. Veterans are a tight-knit group and refer business out to each other.
Whatever you do, don't paint yourself in a corner to thinking that only current service members can obtain a VA loan. Here are some members, on Active Rain, that are most likely eligible for the VA home loan product (and they've been out of the service for years):
- Debra Drummmond is a former Marine (although she'll probably say that once a Marine, always a Marine).
- David Kucic was a Top Sergeant in the US Army.
- Our own Rich Jacobson sailed the seven seas in the US Navy.
- Rich Shelton is a retired Air Force Colonel.
There are plenty more but the point I'm trying to make is that ALL of these members, regardless of their "retired" status would be eligible to buy a million dollar home, in San Francisco, with no money down. They'd have to move there and qualify for the loan but they are eligible to use their VA benefits, whether this is their first home or not.
Get creative for your 2009 business. If you want to work with veterans but are unclear how to do it, contact me at (858)-777-9751. I fund VA home loans in all 50 states...especially California!
PS: I'm ecstatic that the Active Rain Real Estate Network featured this post. Would you pleasse help me, by sharing your ideas here, as well: