What Is a Good Credit Score for VA Loan?

Christian Worstell
In this article...
  • You may qualify for a zero-down-payment mortgage through Veterans Affairs. Find out more about the minimum credit score for VA loans and what other factors may affect eligibility.

The minimum credit score for a VA loan varies based on the lender you select for your mortgage. The Department of Veterans Affairs has not established specific credit score requirements for this type of home loan, an available benefit for eligible service members, veterans and spouses.

What Is a VA Loan?

VA loans are mortgages backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs. The VA doesn't provide the loans but insures them so lenders participating in the program, including banks, are more likely to approve the loans even if someone doesn't meet the credit or down payment requirements for a conventional loan. VA loans are typically available for qualifying veterans, service members and some spouses or dependents of those individuals. 

What Kind of Credit Score Do I Need for a VA Loan?

Although the VA does not require a minimum credit score for a mortgage, you need to go through a lender that provides VA home loans. Most lenders require a credit score of at least 620, but you may qualify for a lower interest rate if you have a higher score. For example, getting your score over 720 could save you a lot of money on your mortgage interest. 

How Can I Improve My Credit Score for a VA Loan?

Start by checking your score and report to see where you stand. You can get a free copy of your credit report from all three credit bureaus once a year as well as anytime you get denied for a loan.  File a dispute if you notice any errors that could be negatively affecting your score. 

While it can take time to build up a healthy credit score, you can get on the right path by paying all your bills in full and on time every month. You should also avoid carrying a balance on your credit cards of more than 30%. If your credit card has a $1,000 limit, you should pay it down to $300 or less every month to maintain a healthy credit utilization ratio.

What Is the Debt-to-Income Ratio for a VA Loan?

While the VA does not have a minimum credit score, it does have a maximum debt to income ratio. Under the agency's rules, your total debt payments must equal less than 41% of your monthly income before taxes. For example, if your household earns $5,000 in monthly income, total debts must not exceed $2,050.

Christian Worstell
About the Author

Christian Worstell is a senior Medicare and health insurance writer with HelpAdivsor.com. He is also a licensed health insurance agent. Christian is well-known in the insurance industry for the thousands of educational articles he’s written, helping Americans better understand their health insurance and Medicare coverage.

Christian’s work as a Medicare expert has appeared in several top-tier and trade news outlets including Forbes, MarketWatch, WebMD and Yahoo! Finance.

While at HelpAdvisor, Christian has written hundreds of articles that teach Medicare beneficiaries the best practices for navigating Medicare. His articles are read by thousands of older Americans each month. By better understanding their health care coverage, readers may hopefully learn how to limit their out-of-pocket Medicare spending and access quality medical care.

Christian’s passion for his role stems from his desire to make a difference in the senior community. He strongly believes that the more beneficiaries know about their Medicare coverage, the better their overall health and wellness is as a result.

A current resident of Raleigh, Christian is a graduate of Shippensburg University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. You can find Christian’s most recent articles in our blog.

If you’re a member of the media looking to connect with Christian, please don’t hesitate to email our public relations team at Mike@MyHelpAdvisor.com.

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