CERTIFICATE OF ELIGIBILITY FOR A VA MORTGAGE LOAN
After borrowers confirm they are eligible for a VA loan, they will need a Certificate of Eligibility (COE). The COE validates entitlement for the program. There are a couple of valuable resources that can help in advancing the process of getting the COE for a veteran.
- Outside of the automated request system available to mortgage lenders, the most helpful—and the quickest—route for obtaining a COE is by accessing the Veterans Administration eBenefits Portal.The National Personnel Records Center(NPRC) has undertaken the responsibility of scanning all personnel records into an electronic database. So veterans who separated after June of 2000 should have records available to them online. Logging into the ebenefits.va.gov website provides access to information on veteran benefits and is tailored to each individual. Gaining access to this site is invaluable. It allows most requests to be processed quickly and entirely online. A Premium eBenefits Account delivers near-instant access to personnel records including the Certificate of Eligibility (provided their records have been scanned and uploaded).
- If electronic records are not available, the process is longer but not impossible. The veteran will need to submit, by mail or fax, an SF-180form to request military records. The NPRC will send required documents that can then be submitted to the VA requesting a COE. This process may take several months. Though it is rare for a file to need research or reconstruction, which extends response times, there is one situation to be aware of that will make it VERY In July of 1973 the NPRC headquarters in St. Louis had a massive fire that destroyed 16-18 million records. If your records were destroyed, work with your Loan Advisor and the NPRC to get the necessary paperwork.
Obtaining the COE may seem involved. However, compared to the benefits service members receive from VA loans, the process may prove to be worth the effort.
If you are currently in the military or have served, thank you for your service. Understand the benefits and requirements of VA Mortgage Loans. Take advantage of this valuable benefit that can make it easier for more service members to realize their goals of home ownership!