VA Mortgage Calculator

VA Loan Calculator

If you’re considering financing your home purchase with a VA mortgage loan, you can estimate your costs with a VA mortgage loan calculator. Simply input your home purchase price, VA loan down payment amount, if any, VA loan period, interest rate, and payment frequency to calculate your monthly mortgage payment, total interest paid, and the total mortgage cost.

Preparing to buy a house? Call us for a complimentary mortgage consultation or get pre-qualified online.

What Is a VA Mortgage Loan Calculator?

A VA mortgage loan calculator is an online tool that can help you estimate the cost of borrowing with a VA loan. If you’re eligible for this type of mortgage, you might use a VA home loan calculator to determine how much home you can afford, based on your interest rate, down payment amount, and loan term.

Using a VA loan payment calculator doesn’t tell you how much you’re eligible to borrow, nor does it qualify you for a loan. It’s simply meant to be an informational tool that you can use to guide your decision-making when setting a home buying budget.

How to Use the VA Mortgage Loan Calculator

To use a VA loan calculator you’ll first need to gather some basic information. Specifically, you’ll need to know:

•   How much you want to borrow

•   Your down payment amount (VA loans don’t require a down payment, and many borrowers don’t make one.)

•   An estimated interest rate you might qualify for

•   Your loan term in years

•   Loan payment frequency

You can then plug each of the numbers into a VA mortgage loan calculator in the corresponding space and the calculator does the rest. You’ll be able to see your:

•   Mortgage payment amount

•   Mortgage amount (the principal you are borrowing)

•   Interest paid

•   Total cost of mortgage (the principal plus the interest)

It’s quick and simple, and you can easily make adjustments to any of your inputs to see how your payment amount and interest might change. Mortgage calculators are helpful tools for any first-time homebuyer trying to estimate costs for different types of mortgage loans.

Benefits of Using VA Mortgage Loan Calculator

Using a VA loan payment calculator or home affordability calculator can allow you to see at a glance how much you might pay for a home loan. Estimating your mortgage costs before applying for a loan can help you to:

•   Weigh the benefits of a larger vs. smaller down payment

•   Calculate the total interest paid using a shorter or longer loan term

•   Understand your monthly payment costs to ensure they’re affordable for your budget

Buying a home, with a VA loan or any other type of mortgage loan, can be a complex process and it’s to your advantage to be as prepared as possible before diving in. A VA home loan calculator can give you some hard numbers to work with so you can make the most informed decision possible when it’s time to choose a mortgage.

Remember, though, that in addition to your monthly payment on the mortgage (paying down a portion of what you borrowed, plus interest), you’ll also need to pay for property taxes and home insurance. So build these costs into your budget as well. If you want to see these extra costs factored into your monthly payments, use a mortgage calculator with taxes and insurance.

What Is a VA Loan?

A VA loan is a home loan that’s provided by a private lender but guaranteed by the federal government. VA loans are designed to help qualifying veterans, service members, and eligible surviving spouses purchase a home with minimal down payment and credit score requirements.

VA loans can be used to:

•   Buy a home

•   Build a home

•   Improve a home

•   Complete a mortgage refinance

With the exception of the Native American Direct Loan (NADL) program, which is designed for Native American veterans and veterans married to Native Americans, the government doesn’t extend VA loans directly. Instead, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) guarantees the loan.

Should you get a VA loan to buy a home and default on the payments for any reason, the VA would step in to minimize losses for the lender. VA loans are just one type of government-backed mortgage, alongside home loans backed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans.

Pros and Cons of a VA Loan

VA loans can offer some advantages to homebuyers. Some of the most attractive features of VA mortgage loans include:

•   No down payment requirement

•   No private mortgage insurance (PMI) requirement

•   Low, fixed interest rates

•   Potentially easier approval than conventional mortgage loans

•   No prepayment penalties for paying your loan off early

There are, however, some drawbacks. Perhaps most significantly, VA loans are not available to every homebuyer. You must meet specific requirements to qualify.

Additionally, the VA home loan program has restrictions concerning the types of properties you can buy. If you’re interested in buying a multi-unit rental property for investment income, for instance, you can’t use a VA loan unless you plan to live in one of the units. You’ll need to get any home you plan to buy appraised, and some properties may require inspection from a structural engineer.

VA loans have funding fees, which are due at closing. You could roll the fee into the loan so you pay nothing out of pocket, but that will increase your cost of borrowing in the long term. If you’re putting nothing down, you’ll be starting with zero equity in the property.

VA Loan Requirements

Before you can apply for a VA loan you’ll first need to request a Certificate of Eligibility (COE) to show a lender that you qualify based on your service history and duty status. You can request a COE online through the VA website.

Minimum service requirements are tied to your duty status. Service members meet the guidelines if they’ve served at least 90 continuous days on active duty with no breaks. Requirements for veterans are based on when you served.

For example, if you served any time between August 2, 1990, and the present you meet the minimum active-duty service requirement so long as you completed:

•   24 or more continuous months, OR

•   At least 90 days for which you were called or ordered to active duty, OR

•   At least 90 days if you were discharged for a hardship or reduction in force, OR

•   Less than 90 days if you were discharged due to a service-connected disability

Different requirements apply to National Guard and Reserve members. If you were discharged, you could still obtain a COE if your discharge is related to:

•   Hardship

•   The convenience of the government (you must have served 20 months of a two-year enlistment required)

•   Early out (you must have served 21 months of a two-year enlistment)

•   Reduction in force

•   Certain medical conditions

•   Service-connected disability

If you were dishonorably discharged or discharged for bad conduct, you may not be eligible for VA benefits, including eligibility for VA loans.

Aside from service requirements, you’ll also need to meet credit score and income requirements for a VA loan. The VA does not set a minimum credit score but lenders can. Credit score and income thresholds can vary by lender, but the higher your score is, the easier it may be to get approved.

VA Mortgage Loan Process

The VA loan process starts with obtaining your COE. You’ll need to have this to show to a lender as proof of your eligibility for a VA loan.

Once you’ve checked off that step, you’re ready to use a VA loan calculator to crunch some numbers. If you have a target purchase price in mind, using a VA mortgage calculator can tell you if that amount is realistic, based on your estimated payments.

The next step is choosing a lender. You may want to go through the mortgage preapproval process, sharing some basic information with multiple lenders to get home loan quotes. As you compare VA loan lenders, consider:

•   Interest rates

•   Fees

•   Minimum credit score and income requirements

•   Length of loan terms

If you’ve found a home you want to buy and have made an offer, you can apply for a VA loan. You’ll fill out the lender’s application and agree to allow a hard credit check. You’ll need to have the home inspected and appraised by VA-approved professionals.

The lender may ask for supporting documentation, such as bank statements, investment statements, or an explanation of negative marks on your credit. If you get the green light for a VA loan, the lender will finalize the paperwork so you can prepare for closing.

At closing, you’ll hand over any down payment funds you plan to offer and pay the loan fee unless you’re rolling it into the mortgage. Once you’ve signed off on all the paperwork you can start moving in. Your first payment to a VA loan is usually due on the first day of the first full month after closing.

Reviewing tips to qualify for a mortgage can give you a better idea of what you need to do to improve your approval odds. For more advice on getting the mortgage that’s right for your personal situation, visit a home loan help center.

How Does a Down Payment Work?

A down payment is money you pay in advance against a home’s purchase price. For example, say you want to buy a $300,000 home and plan to put 20% down. You’d give the lender $60,000 at closing and finance the remaining $240,000.

VA loans don’t require a down payment but you can offer one if you’d like to finance a lower amount. A down payment gives you an automatic equity stake in the property, and offering one for a VA loan may help you qualify for better terms.

A larger down payment can also lower your monthly payment. If you’re using a VA loan payment calculator or any other mortgage calculator to estimate costs, you can see how your payment might change based on how much you put down.

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How to Lower a Mortgage Down Payment

The easiest way to lower the down payment requirement on a mortgage is to choose a home loan option that doesn’t require you to bring a lot of money to the table. VA loans, USDA loans, and FHA loans all have low or no down payment requirements.

Aside from that, you could opt to use gifted money to make a down payment. Down payment gifts must come from an approved person or entity, and you must document them properly. Specifically, you must be able to show in writing:

•   Who made the gift

•   How much was gifted

•   When it was gifted

There must also be wording that specifies that any money you receive is a gift and doesn’t need to be repaid to the donor.

Ready to start your home buying journey?

Get in touch with a Mortgage Loan Officer for a complimentary mortgage consultation. If you’re ready to jump in, get pre-qualified online in minutes.

Average Mortgage Down Payment in 2024

Through the first quarter of 2024, the average home down payment was 13.6% of the purchase price, according to®. In median dollars, the typical down payment over the same period was $26,000. Down payments for second homes and investment properties were 27.9% and 27.3%, respectively.

An often-repeated rule of thumb for down payments is 20%, assuming that you’re getting a conventional mortgage loan. So if you’re buying a $250,000 home, you’d need $50,000 for the down payment.

If you’re considering a government-backed mortgage, however, you don’t have to aim for 20%. Again, VA loans allow you to buy a home with $0 down. That’s an advantage if you don’t have a lot of money saved toward a down payment, or don’t want to part with all your cash.

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Tips on Mortgage Down Payments

How much should you put down on a home? It depends on your financial situation and overall goals.

You might choose a larger down payment if you:

•   Want a smaller mortgage loan

•   Prefer a lower monthly payment

•   Have plenty of extra cash to cover emergencies or required maintenance and upkeep

On the other hand, you may put less money down if you:

•   Don’t want to drain your cash savings

•   Qualify for a low or $0 down payment mortgage, such as a VA loan

•   Can handle the mortgage payment that would be needed to finance 100% of the home

While you’re shopping for a home, you can park your down payment funds in a high-yield savings account. You can earn some interest on the money and enjoy convenient access when you’re ready to use it.

The Takeaway

A VA home loan calculator can shed light on what you might pay for a VA mortgage. If you’re ready to buy a home but aren’t sure how the process works, start by familiarizing yourself with some of the most important home-buying terms and use mortgage calculators to explore the costs of different types of loans with different down payment amounts and interest rates.

SoFi offers VA loans with competitive interest rates, no private mortgage insurance, and down payments as low as 0%. Eligible service members, veterans, and survivors may use the benefit multiple times.

Our Mortgage Loan Officers are ready to guide you through the process step by step.


How do I find out how much VA loan I qualify for?

Getting preapproved can give you an idea of how much you might be able to borrow with a VA loan. The mortgage preapproval process involves sharing some basic information with a lender to get a home loan quote. VA loan preapproval doesn’t guarantee that you’ll be able to get a loan but it can help you estimate your borrowing power.

How much can you borrow on a VA loan?

The amount you can borrow on a VA loan can depend on your credit score, income, and details of the property. For 2024, the maximum VA loan limit for most counties is $766,550. The limit increases to $1,149,825 for high-cost counties. These limits apply to single-family homes.

What is the 1% rule on a VA loan?

The 1% rule on a VA loan refers to the maximum amount a lender can charge for an origination fee. Origination fees are paid to cover the cost of processing the loan. These fees are typically paid at closing, along with other closing costs and your down payment.

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*SoFi requires Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) for conforming home loans with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio greater than 80%. As little as 3% down payments are for qualifying first-time homebuyers only. 5% minimum applies to other borrowers. Other loan types may require different fees or insurance (e.g., VA funding fee, FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums, etc.). Loan requirements may vary depending on your down payment amount, and minimum down payment varies by loan type.

Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.

Third-Party Brand Mentions: No brands, products, or companies mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third-party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.
Tax Information: This article provides general background information only and is not intended to serve as legal or tax advice or as a substitute for legal counsel. You should consult your own attorney and/or tax advisor if you have a question requiring legal or tax advice.

¹FHA loans are subject to unique terms and conditions established by FHA and SoFi. Ask your SoFi loan officer for details about eligibility, documentation, and other requirements. FHA loans require an Upfront Mortgage Insurance Premium (UFMIP), which may be financed or paid at closing, in addition to monthly Mortgage Insurance Premiums (MIP). Maximum loan amounts vary by county. The minimum FHA mortgage down payment is 3.5% for those who qualify financially for a primary purchase. SoFi is not affiliated with any government agency.

†Veterans, Service members, and members of the National Guard or Reserve may be eligible for a loan guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. VA loans are subject to unique terms and conditions established by VA and SoFi. Ask your SoFi loan officer for details about eligibility, documentation, and other requirements. VA loans typically require a one-time funding fee except as may be exempted by VA guidelines. The fee may be financed or paid at closing. The amount of the fee depends on the type of loan, the total amount of the loan, and, depending on loan type, prior use of VA eligibility and down payment amount. The VA funding fee is typically non-refundable. SoFi is not affiliated with any government agency.

External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third-party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.


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