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VA Guide

Understanding Entitlement

Buying a Home with No Down Payment

Down payments and mortgage insurance protect lenders from loss when you’re buying a home.

When you get a VA loan, the VA will guarantee a portion of your loan to protect lenders so that you don’t have to. The amount of that guarantee is your entitlement.

In most cases, entitlement means you won’t need money for a down payment, but it doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed or entitled to a loan. It also doesn’t mean you won’t need some money to pay for closing costs and some other fees.

Understanding Entitlement

There are two kinds of entitlement:

  • You start with a basic entitlement of $36,000. The status of your basic entitlement, including how much you have, is listed on your Certificate of Eligibility.
  • You get additional entitlement, also known as bonus or Tier 2 entitlement, if your loan amount is between $144,000 and around $450,000.

If you’re using entitlement for the first time and your loan amount is less than $450,000, you’ll only need money for your closing costs and other fees. You won’t need a down payment.

It’s best to ask a VA-approved lender if your loan amount will be more than $450,000 or you’ve used your entitlement before.

Let Our Experts Do the Work

Quicken Loans is a VA-approved lender. Our Home Loan Experts will help you figure out how much money you need upfront to buy your home.

Speak with a Home Loan Expert

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