What Is A VA Loan Statement Of Service?

5 Min Read
Updated Jan. 9, 2024
Written By
Victoria Araj
Blurred parents in military uniform holding daughter with key at home

When qualified military members apply for a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) loan, their lender will ask them to submit a VA statement of service. The statement of service is an essential document lenders use to confirm a borrower’s military income and service status.

Let’s review everything you should know about the VA loan statement of service.

What Is A VA Statement Of Service Letter?

A VA home loan statement of service is an official record of an active-duty service member’s current military status and military income. This is the document you’ll need to provide if you’re currently enlisted – if you’re a veteran, you’ll need to provide you discharge papers instead.

To obtain a VA loan statement of service, the borrower can speak to their commanding officer or request a copy from the Defense Personnel Records Information Retrieval System.

A VA loan statement of service typically includes the following information about a service member:

General Information

  • Full name
  • Social Security number
  • Date of birth
  • Branch of service (e.g., the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard, Space Force)
  • Unit of assignment and current base
  • Rank

Service Status

  • Dates of service
  • Date and character of discharge (if applicable)

Military Income

The letter should also include your military income, including special duty pay, parachute pay or flight pay.

Make sure the letter is dated and signed by the preparer.

See What You Qualify For

Why Does Income Verification Matter?

When a civilian borrower applies for a conventional mortgage loan, the lender verifies the borrower’s income to help ensure they can comfortably repay their loan.

The same goes for VA home loan approval. A lender will request a statement of service to verify a borrower’s financial situation and employment history. All this information will help the lender decide whether to approve a VA loan application.

Does Income Verification Matter For A Conventional Loan?

Lenders will require proof of stable income for 12 months from active-duty service members for conventional loans, including military and nonmilitary income. This information offers lenders a fuller picture of your finances.

How To Get A Statement Of Service For VA Loans

You can get a VA home loan statement of service from your commanding officer. Give them plenty of time to collect your information and write the letter. The loan process will be on hold until the statement of service is submitted, so put this task at the top of your home buying checklist.

What Other Documentation Do You Need For A VA Loan?

In addition to your statement of service, you must submit proof of VA loan eligibility with a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) and a copy of a government-issued ID. You may also need to provide:

  • 2 years of W-2s or previous 2 years of tax returns if self-employed
  • 2 months of recent bank statements
  • Investment or retirement account statements
  • A letter of explanation for any gaps in employment history or credit issues

What’s The Difference Between A Statement Of Service And A Certificate Of Eligibility?

Both documents verify military service but serve different purposes in the loan process.

A COE confirms eligibility for a VA loan. The document includes time served in the military, discharge and eligibility status. The statement of service confirms military service and military income. Lenders require both documents to proceed with a VA loan application for active-duty service members.

If you’re a veteran, your lender may require a DD Form 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge Form Active Duty.

Can You Be Denied A VA Loan With A VA Statement Of Service?

The VA loan program helps eligible active-duty service members, veterans and surviving spouses own a home. The benefits of the loan include no down payment and no mortgage insurance.

While VA loans offer many advantages, an application can be denied if a borrower has:

  • A low credit score for the loan: While you can qualify for a VA loan with a lower credit score than a conventional loan, you’ll need to meet your lender’s minimum credit score requirement.
  • A high debt-to-income ratio (DTI): If you spend most of your monthly income on fixed monthly debts, you may not qualify for a VA loan.
  • Low income for the loan: If your income doesn’t meet a lender or loan’s income requirement, you may need to wait to buy or look for a more affordable home or a starter home. Get preapproved to help you determine which loans you may qualify for.
  • Irregular income: A steady income is a promising sign to lenders that a potential borrower can cover their monthly mortgage payments.

If your application doesn’t meet every single lender requirement now, that doesn’t mean you can’t qualify for a VA loan in the future. Look for ways to strengthen your financial profile. That may mean improving your credit or waiting until your income increases.

The Bottom Line

Income verification is a large part of the loan approval process. For a VA loan, a statement of service is the document you’ll need to prove that you can afford a mortgage. Do yourself a favor and put your statement of service high on your to-do list for the VA loan process. It may take some time for your commanding officer to complete the document.

If you’re ready to apply for a VA loan and become a homeowner, today.

Guide to VA Loans

Guide to VA Loans

Discover a more affordable loan option for United States Veterans, Service Members and spouses.


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