The Certificate of Eligibility (COE) is an important step in starting the VA loan process. This document declares your eligibility for the VA loan program. When looking to start the loan process, you can either get the COE yourself or have your California VA lender request it for you. The fastest and easiest way to retrieve your COE is to have your lender do it.
Regardless of which way you decide to obtain your Certificate of Eligibility, you will need to provide proof of service for your lender. If you served in the armed forces you will need to provide your DD214, which is also known as the Certificate of Release or Discharge papers, for your proof of service. Copy 4 of the DD-214 is the preferred version for the VA program because it provides the most details regarding your service. For members of the national guard and reserves, you will have to show your most recent annual retirement summary as their proof of service. You can still submit a request for a COE even if you don’t have a proof of service form because in some cases the VA can determine your eligibility based on their own records.
If you decide to go about obtaining your COE yourself there are a couple different ways that you can go about getting it. You can use the VA online ebenefits portal, visit your nearby regional loan center or mail in the needed documents. If you decide to have your lender get the COE it is a much simpler and quicker process. If you have your lender request the COE, all you need to do is provide them with your proof of service. In some cases, your lender may be able to retrieve your COE in minutes without the proof of service. Lenders are able to use the VA Automated Certificate of Eligibility portal to request your COE and determine your eligibility in a matter of minutes. In some cases, the automated portal will be unable to make a decision but it will still be a faster process for your lender to get the COE. Even if you have already received your Certificate of Eligibility, your lender will still go online to pull an updated version, so having the lender pull it in the first place is the best way to go in most cases.
Authored by Tim Storm, an Orange County VA Loan Officer specializing in VA Loan. MLO 223456. – Please contact my office at the Home Point Financial. My direct line is 949-640-3102. I will prepare custom VA loan scenarios which will be matched up to your financial goals, both long and short-term. I also prepare a Video Explanation of the your scenarios so that you are able to fully understand the numbers BEFORE you have started the loan process.