My husband and I have been contemplating on a refi of our VA Loan. How do you make this decision? What options should you really weigh in on?
I know there are so many factors that you should consider. Let me just fill you in on a few key notes of our past, and you MAY or may not be able to relate! My husband has been in for 20 years and 4 months. We owned a home in Alaska and lived in it for over 6 years. We were very fortunate to leave on a Monday morning for our PCS, and a offer came in about 3 hours after we were on the road. And after about 2 wks of back and forth on the deal (because we were traveling through Canada, bad phone reception and an accident) our house was sold and our VA loan was reopened. We stayed with some friends when we first got to Vegas, and then a rental that was foreclosed on (48 hour to vacate notice), Sean deployed, I later got into another rental, was there for a wk and the morning after my husband returned from Iraq another knock at the door “this house is supposed to be vacant, it is bank owned” yep we were going to be out of a home again. So we began looking for a house to purchase so that we would only be kicked out of a house if it was due to our own non-payment, not someone elses!
We bought our current home in April 2010, yes that is right, just last year! The rate that we had at that time was 5.375%, which we were okay with, because that was low for that time frame. We did do our VA loan. Now, over a year later the rates are lower, yesterday was 3.87%. This sounds really good right?
We made the decision at the end of 2009 to purchase a home, because… the market had follen and prices were right. We had our 3rd premature baby and did not need to get kicked out of a 3rd home at the same duty station. My husband in a couple of months was going to be starting a new job that took on a new 3 year commitment, so we knew that we were not going to be relocating for at least 3 years, and at the end of that time we would most likely be retiring from the military.
So, knowing that he has a 1 1/2 year commitment left to this job and the military, and at that time retirement comes and we have no intention of staying in Vegas. Another reason we know that retirement is not coming any sooner is because of the transfer of the GI Bill to our children! Should we put more into it than just figures and dollars? In less than 10 months you would have the money paid for that it costs to refi.
Did you know that to refi your current VA loan, that by doing a VA Streamline, the VA only requires a 1/2 percent funding fee? This is a really great deal. The only thing that could be better is FREE, and I really don’t think that, that will be happening! And depending on your bank requirements, the only fees that are left, is what they (the bank) decides they are going to charge. For us, I was told that they only charge, Title Fee, and a few other things like that, and if we chose not to buy down points, then it is aprox an extra $200 over the funding fee, and all of that would be added to our loan. However our bank is not giving the national average of 3.875% they were offering 4.37%. Don’t know why that is, and they offered no explanation.
It’s always great to check out other local banks as well, especially in this market! As for us, I am not sure what we are going to do. I know that being this close to retirement, we can’t just look at the Here and NOW! We for sure want to be able to use our VA loan when we retire on a new home. What if we can’t sell our house? What if we decide not to sell it, but rent it out? Will we want to refi it into a conventional loan later? How much will that really cost us? Not to mention the fact that the rates are always higher if you do financing when it is a rental property.
So many decisions… And what is the food that you use to fill the thought? Any ideas or suggestions to use for consideration would be…. fantastic. Or maybe you are having the same thoughts.. let me know!