Last Updated on August 2, 2017
Are you missing out on working with 21% of sellers and 18% of buyers? A 2016 NAR study found that veterans make up a huge percentage of sellers and buyers, and active military add even more! So… what if I asked you? Would you like to add 21% to your business? What would you say?
Well, of course you’d say “YES!” But for one reason or another, many agents haven’t taken the time to learn how to effectively work with VA Loan recipients – veteran buyers and sellers. Often that’s because there’s a myriad of myths out there swirling around when it comes to working with VA Loans.
So let’s start by dispelling some of those myths. Then, once you’re comfortable we’ll dive into marketing toward, and working with veterans.
The VA Loan Benefit started over 70 years ago. And a lot of things have changed over the years to make it easier than ever for veterans to purchase a home.
Check out my video, below, for more:
What are some of these myths about VA Loans?
- Myth 1: VA Loans Take a Long Time to Close – In the past, lenders would take a VA Loan Application, document it and then forward it to the VA for approval. However, that process is a thing of the past. Approved VA Lenders can perform all aspects of a VA Loan approval. The average closing time of a VA Loan is no longer than any other loan. (In 2015, the Ellie Mae Origination Insight Report showed that VA Loans took an average of 50 days to close. Conventional Loans took 49.)
- Myth 2: Closing Rates are Lower for VA Loans – This is just not true. The same 2015 Ellie Mae report found that VA Loans closed 75.1% of the time, while Conventional Loans closed 73.8% of the time. Now, what if I asked you, would you like to increase your business by 21%, with clients who close more often? What would you say?
- Myth 3: VA Appraisal Inspection is Too Harsh – A VA Loan does add couple requirements on top of a Conventional Loan. However, in almost everything but special cases, you wouldn’t want to put your clients in homes without these items inspected anyway.
- Myth 4: VA Appraisers Don’t Understand the Buyer’s Area – VA Lenders now have access to the Lenders Appraisal Processing Program which orders, manages and processes requests. Even better, VA Appraisers are now often local contractors with direct knowledge of the area.
We’ve got 4 more!
- Myth 5: VA Loans Require a High Credit Score – Lenders do set a minimum credit requirement for VA Loans but this is normally around 620. Conventional Loans are normally set around 715. Where did this myth even come from?
- Myth 6: Sellers Are Required to Pay the Veteran’s Closing Costs – Sellers are not required to pay any of the closing costs. There are closing costs the veteran is not allowed to pay but the seller is not responsible for them. Seller-paid closing costs are allowable up to 4% of the sale price.
- Myth 7: Veterans Are Guaranteed a VA Loan – No one is guaranteed to receive a loan. The loan does include a guaranty to the lender in case of default.
- Myth 8: VA Loan is a one-time benefit – The VA Loan can be used multiple times, and even at the same time. This is just one more reason you probably want to work with a VA Lender who really understands the ballgame. Plus, users of the VA Loan can use it over and over again…and they can re-use their real estate agent, too…
So, working with veterans is becoming a pretty appealing proposition right? Well, just when you thought working with veteran and active military members can’t get any better, keep in mind, veteran and military service members move 2-3x more than the typical civilian over their lifetime! So… 21% of the market, an additional 3 times over your career? Working with veterans and active service members might be the best move you ever make!
So, how do you start working with VA Loan clients…?
The first step, if you haven’t already, is to get fully educated on VA Loans, and working with veteran clients. The last thing you want to do is start advertising to people without really understanding that market.
To start, check out NAR’s Veterans and Active Military Home Buyers and Sellers Profile. This has great information about veteran home buyers and sellers, their characteristics and what the home search process looks like for them.
Our friends at VA Loan Captain are also a great resource for information about VA Loans as well as working with veterans and active service members. Beyond being friends of Agent Inner Circle, and a veteran-owned business, they are also an NAR REach incubator company that have created the #1 VA Loan Marketplace in the industry. We definitely suggest checking it out. You can compare rates from multiple lenders, get a no-cost, no-obligation quote from VA lenders. You can even benefit from a waived origination fee.
Beyond that, if you’re serious about taking your work with veterans to the next level, you might want to think about getting “VA Loan Certified.” This 4 hour online class covers everything from the history of the VA Home Loan benefit right through how to write an effective offer for veterans or active duty service members. Sometimes, that personal offer can make all the difference in the world.
Next week’s interview- don’t miss it!
We’ll be interviewing Grant Moon, Founder and CEO of VA Loan Captain, next week on our Facebook page via Facebook LIVE. We’ll be asking him about the best ways to work with veterans and active duty service members. Grant’s special blend of military, real estate and tech knowledge make him a great interview subject. He’s got 18 years of military experience, an MS in Technology Management from Columbia, and is CEO of VA Loan Captain/Home Captain Realty. So get your questions ready! Don’t miss this event at 1:00 pm Eastern, Thursday August 10th. Add it to your calendar now, or go on over to our Facebook page (here), find the event, and click “interested.”
Have any questions you want answered by Grant or Alex on the Facebook LIVE event? Submit your questions below (just click the button) to WIN a copy of Dan Kennedy’s book – The Ultimate Sales Letter.
21% of Buyers/Sellers