A suburban home bought with a VA Home Loan

Prepayment Penalties are No Problem

By | Financing, Home Loans, Housing, VA Loans | No Comments

Because of their service to this country, there are many support systems in place for veterans. The problem is that many veterans don’t know what is offered to them. Veteran Affairs provided a huge element of support for veterans when VA Home Loans were enacted in 1944 as an addition to the GI Bill of Rights. However, most homebuyers – veterans or not – have a hard time deciphering which loan will be best for their situation.

All too often, veterans do not take advantage of the benefits of a VA home loan because they do not understand what is actually provided within them. There are plenty of advantages worked into the VA home loan structure but one that can provide freedom and flexibility for their lifestyle is: no prepayment penalties.

Prepay Away

As is the case with most home loans, there are certain rules that lending organizations require the borrower to abide by. It is primarily structured this way so that the lender is ensuring a certain amount of revenue from interest-based on the term of the loan. However, organizations offering VA home loans can not penalize veteran-borrowers for paying back their loan before the term states.

How Is This a Benefit?

While prepayment might not seem like a big deal, it really is. Being able to pay back your loan before the term is up allows borrowers to relieve the financial burden that loans can instill. More importantly, it allows home loan borrowers to relocate, upgrade, downsize, or just find a home better suited to their needs without having to wait out a loan term.

This can grant veterans the opportunity to adjust to their lifestyle as time goes on. Maybe that means they can continue to grow their family with children or pets, build a business in or out of their home, relocate to a more accommodating neighborhood, move to a new state for work, or renovate the home their already and sell for profit. The opportunities are endless and would not be possible in a traditional home loan experience.

Other Home Loan Benefits

There are plenty of other benefits for veterans a part of VA home loans so speak with a home loan expert on what the VA can offer to you as you continue on your home buying journey. Be sure to ask which type of VA home loan will work best for you and your needs.

A fall decorated home, bought with a VA Home Loan

Veteran’s Fall Home Maintenance Checklist: 6 Things to Do Before Winter

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Rustling leaves, chilly wind, and colorful trees are all telltale signs that fall has reached your home. While it is tempting to kick back and relax this season, winter is right around the corner to wreak havoc on your home. If you’ve moved into your home recently using a VA home loan, don’t let the sudden snowfall catch you by surprise this year, be prepared by going through this checklist of 6 must-dos before winter.

Checklist Must-Dos

1. Check Your Roof

Your roof is an expensive part of your house that if not properly maintained, can cause water and snow to leak into the small cracks and crevices. Check for warning signs like loose or missing shingles, beams of light peaking into your house, minor leaks, and debris buildup.

2. Heat Your Pipes

Time to crank up the heat. Some people enjoy the cold more than others, but if you are wanting to keep your pipes from freezing, then let the hot air reach them. Even in the fall, your pipes can freeze and burst, so don’t let the holidays bring unwanted expenses.

3. Unclutter Your Gutter

We talked about roof maintenance checks, but your gutter should not be passed up during your roof inspection. Fall brings the leaves, and those leaves go into your gutter. A cluttered gutter can cause ice dams. Don’t let your leafy gutter cause your roof to degrade. The last thing you want is to clean your roof and have your gutter buildup reverse your hard work.

4. Fertilize Your Lawn

Just because your grass is buried in leaves or snow does not mean your grass isn’t active. The roots are still there and need some extra protection using fertilizer. By applying it in advance, your lawn won’t be a sore sight in the spring. You wouldn’t want to have the only yellow lawn in your neighborhood.

5. The Hearth of The Home

Fall mood includes a cozy fire to sit by with some hot chocolate in hand and the smell of cookies in the oven. Your fireplace should be inspected by a professional if you have never done it before. Don’t let the creosote accumulate and ruin the mood by lighting your house on fire. That would be anything but cozy.

6. Unwanted Guests

Your family isn’t the only family wanting to stay warm. Mice, squirrels and other critters can’t wait to make themselves at home in your house. Inspect your home for any openings or holes that are around your house. Plug these up before it really starts to get chilly, or you will be hearing some skittering in the walls.

Idaho Seasons

Idaho is one of the few US states that experiences all 4 seasons without drastic temperature and weather changes. For people moving to the area during the fall, especially veterans or active military members, be sure to talk to a home loan specialist so that you can move into a home that fits you. Idaho has amazing VA home loan information resources so you can make the transition a smooth one. I hope the checklist has got you prepped and excited for the snowy season!

A Home pin with american flag behind it.

Veterans and Active Military: Finding Your New Home

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The US is regularly plagued by natural disasters and crime. From California fires to hurricanes along the coast, there seems to be nowhere safe to go. Crime rates can be high in the US too; feeling safe in your home is important especially when trying to rejoin American society. If you or someone you love is a US veteran or active military member and has experienced the loss of a home, then we can help you. We will also go over low-crime-areas so that you can feel extra comfortable in your decision of choosing where to go next.

Naturally Safe

The last thing you want to have happened is to come home after service and have your home ruined by mother nature. It may be tempting to stay in the current state and find a new place to stay but in the event the natural disaster happens again, you don’t want to lose another home. Here are some amazing states that are considered the safest from natural disaster damage:

  • Montana
  • Maine
  • Colorado
  • Vermont
  • Minnesota

Publicly Safe

Not only are natural disasters a scary situation but being in fear of your community every day is a whole other beast. Especially for veterans suffering from PTSD, walking on eggshells every day is too much anxiety to handle. There are several states that you can make home so you can sleep easy every night knowing that your potential state has low crime. Here are the top safe states of 2019:

  • Maine
  • Vermont
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • Idaho

After Choosing

As you can see some of the states do overlap in safety for both variables. If you have made your choice of where to live, then you may need some assistance in locking down your dream home. A great resource for veterans and active military is a VA home loan. You can get a home loan for $0 down, which is only one of the many benefits a VA home loan has to offer.

VA Loan Benefits

  • No required down payment percentage
  • No monthly mortgage insurance premiums
  • The lowest average interest rate of all loan types
  • No prepayment penalty

Feel Safe

Whether you’ve lost your home or are simply looking for a safer place to live, knowing you have another perk from your military service is sure to ease your nerves. A VA home loan can help you financially and mentally so you can confidently plant your feet in a place you know is safe.

Before you speak with a local VA home loan specialist you can get a quote online if you want to buy or refinance your home. With a VA home loan, you can save up for furniture, relocate easily, and recover from disasters straightforwardly.

In State Specialist

As you noticed, Idaho is one of the safest states in terms of crime rate. For information on moving to Idaho and purchasing a home using a VA home loan, Devin Fahrner will be your best resource. She is an experienced mortgage loan officer that understands your situation and can guide you in the right direction for an Idaho VA home loan. See why Idaho is one of the best states to live in for military personnel, veterans, and military families.

Beautiful home for veterans with a VA home loan

What To Look For In Your New Home

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Whether you are buying for the first-time, relocating, downsizing, upgrading, or anything in between, there are certain things to keep an eye out for as you shop the market. Some of these come down to preference but others can serve as indicators for the quality and state of the home.

Checklist for Home Buyers

Once you’ve secured your VA home loan approval, having a mindful awareness of these checklist items can help you narrow down your selection in the home buying process.

Decide On Dealbreakers

Before looking at a single home, you should think about what you are and are not willing to live with. Developing a clear list of deal breakers through brainstorming will be a huge asset once you begin touring properties. It will also be important to rank these because, more than likely, you will have to compromise some desires for other needs. Your perfect home is out there. It just might need a little negotiation and/or adaptation.

Location & Property

We can’t say it enough: location, location, location. The location of any new home is very important for home buyers to consider. Thinking over which areas and neighborhoods will suit your family, lifestyle, commute, and goals best can narrow down the house hunt, making the most of your time.
It is also important for home buyers to think about what the expectation for the property is going to be. Things like yard space, gardens, driveway, landscape, and other surrounding elements are crucial to finding you the right home.


Floorplans are the foundation of the home. They will dictate what your morning routine looks like, where you’ll spend the majority of your time in the home, and ultimately how satisfied you are with your investment. Because of this, fluidity matters. Thinking through the utility of the space as it stands as well as any changes you might make to the floorplan can make the decision of whether to buy or pass for you.

Nuts and Bolts

Nothing is worse than taking a huge step toward purchasing a house, getting the appraisal completed, and finding out that the functional infrastructure of the home just is not up to par. Before you fall in love with a home, you can maximize your time by asking questions about things like plumbing, heating, cooling, ventilation, and even insulation. Be mindful of weird noises, sounds, or smells as your tour the property and always ask questions.


Beyond the nitty gritty, there is also comfort to consider. Depending on when you visit the property, the sun may or may not be doing the property favors. That being said, lighting has a lot to do with how we function in our homes. So, make sure that your home has both the lighting fixtures you want and the natural lighting you need.


Finishing touches on a home don’t need to be an afterthought. Rather than taking a home ‘as is’, you should take into account what detail work is not meeting your expectations. If this list is overwhelming, it may not be worth the extra work on your part. Keep in mind that some sellers may fix these on top of any bigger repairs decided on after the home inspection. Finishing details to keep in mind might be:

  • Molding
  • Backsplash
  • Hardware
  • Tilework
  • Fireplaces

Need For Renovation

If there is a need for renovation, tally up costs you anticipate and be conscious of the additional investment you may need to make. Often times, there are home loans that integrate renovation costs into the loaning structure. Especially for veterans, there are specific VA home loans are geared toward putting quality of life at the forefront with renovation incorporations available within the terms of the loan.

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