Did you know you may be eligible for a zero-down loan without any maximum limit if you are a veteran or military service member in California? In 2020, the VA eliminated all limits for VA loans in California VA loans for most borrowers. This means that first-time VA homebuyers and those with full entitlements can borrow as much money as the lenders will allow. The amount of your California VA home loan will now depend more on your financial status than the local housing market. VA loan limits are also still available for homebuyers with VA loans or partial entitlement. You may qualify if you are one of the 1,574,531 veterans living in California, active-duty servicemember or eligible surviving spouse of a military member.
There’s no California VA loan limits in 2022 for those with full entitlement
The Department of Veterans Affairs eliminated CA VA home loan limits for fully-qualified borrowers in 2020. That means you can borrow more because you don’t have to worry about finding a house within your local limits. As such, VA home loans now have increased appeal since removing the loan limit requirement. This is especially true when compared to other government mortgage loans. FHA loans, also government-backed, have loan limitations that are based on local housing prices. In most areas across the country, the FHA limit for 2022 is $420,680. Loan limits also apply to conforming conventional mortgages, which are insured by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac rather than a government agency. All that being said, it’s important to remember that just because qualified applicants don’t have to meet any VA loan limit in California doesn’t mean that you can purchase a home at any price.
Lenders now decide how much loan you can afford
Your ability to repay the loan now depends on on the private mortgage lender that issues your VA-backed loan. Along with some general VA loan requirements, the lender will consider several factors.
- Applicant Credit Score: VA borrowers usually need to have a credit score of 620 or better, although some lenders are rumored to lend down to a 580 from time to time. Additionally, California VA loan rates often depend on an applicant’s credit score.
- Income: Lenders will verify your income for the past 2 years to ensure you are earning enough to pay your monthly mortgage payment. VA loans employ two methods of evaluating applicant income to determine how much mortgage they can afford, known as the Debt-to-Income Ratio and the Residual Income method. Of course, you should be asking yourself how much mortgage can I afford before applying for any home loan.
- Applicant Debt-To Income Ratio (DTI): Your debt-to-income ratio compares your monthly debt payments to your monthly income. VA even allows the lender to approve them at a higher DTI if they have other compensating factors. While there’s no limit on VA loan programs for 2022, its ultimately up to your lender and your personal circumstances to determine how much you can borrow.
You can search for an approved VA lender in California, including in the following cities and towns here:
Acton, Adelanto, Agoura Hills, Alameda, Alamo, Albany, Alhambra, Aliso Viejo, Alondra Park, Alpine, Altadena, Alta Sierra, Alum Rock, American Canyon, Anaheim, Anderson, Antelope, Antioch, Apple Valley, Aptos, Arcadia, Arcata, Arden-Arcade, Arroyo Grande, Artesia, Arvin, Ashland, Atascadero, Atherton, Atwater, Auburn, August, Avenal, Avocado Heights, Azusa, Bakersfield, Baldwin Park, Banning, Barstow, Bay Point, Bear Valley Springs, Beaumont, Bell, Bellflower, Bell Gardens, Belmont, Benicia, Ben Lomond, Berkeley, Bermuda Dunes, Beverly Hills, Big Bear City, Big Bear Lake, Blackhawk, Bloomington, Blythe, Bonita, Bostonia, Boulder Creek, Boyes Hot Springs, Brawley, Brea, Brentwood, Bret Harte, Broadmoor, Buellton, Buena Park, Burbank, Burbank, Burlingame, Calabasas, Calexico, California City, Calimesa, Calipatria, Calistoga, Camarillo, Cambria, Cameron Park, Campbell, Camp Pendleton South, Canyon Lake, Capitola, Carlsbad, Carmichael, Carpinteria, Carson, Casa de Oro-Mount Helix, Castaic, Castro Valley, Castroville, Cathedral City, Ceres, Cerritos, Charter Oak, Cherryland, Cherry Valley, Chico, Chino, Chino Hills, Chowchilla, Chula Vista, Citrus, Citrus Heights, Claremont, Clayton, Clearlake, Cloverdale, Clovis, Coachella, Coalinga, Colton, Colusa, Commerce, Compton, Concord, Contra Costa Centre, Corcoran, Corning, Corona, Coronado, Corte Madera, Costa Mesa, Cotati, Coto de Caza, Country Club, Covina, Crescent City, Crestline, Cudahy, Culver City, Cupertino, Cutler, Cypress, Daly City, Dana Point, Danville, Davis, Del Aire, Delano, Delhi, Denair, Desert Hot Springs, Desert Palms, Diamond Bar, Diamond Springs, Dinuba, Discovery Bay, Dixon, Dos Palos, Downey, Duarte, Dublin, Durham, Earlimart, East Foothills, East Hemet, East Los Angeles, East Palo Alto, East Pasadena, East Porterville, East Rancho Dominguez, East San Gabriel, Eastvale, East Whittier, El Cajon, El Centro, El Cerrito, El Cerrito, El Dorado Hills, El Granada, Elk Grove, El Monte, El Paso de Robles (Paso Robles), El Rio, El Segundo, El Sobrante, El Sobrante, Elverta, Emeryville, Encinitas, Escalon, Escondido, Eucalyptus Hills, Eureka, Exeter, Fairfax, Fairfield, Fair Oaks, Fairview, Fallbrook, Farmersville, Fillmore, Firebaugh, Florence-Graham, Florin, Folsom, Fontana, Foothill Farms, Fort Bragg, Fort Irwin, Fortuna, Foster City, Fountain Valley, Fowler, Franklin, Fremont, French Valley, Fresno, Fruitridge Pocket, Fullerton, Galt, Gardena, Garden Acres, Garden Grove, Garnet, Gilroy, Glendale, Glendora, Golden Hills, Gold River, Goleta, Gonzales, Good Hope, Grand Terrace, Granite Bay, Grass Valley, Greenacres, Greenfield, Gridley, Grover Beach, Guadalupe, Guerneville, Gustine, Hacienda Heights, Half Moon Bay, Hanford, Hawaiian Gardens, Hawthorne, Hayward, Healdsburg, Hemet, Hercules, Hermosa Beach, Hesperia, Hidden Valley Lake, Highgrove, Highland, Hillsborough, Hilmar-Irwin, Hollister, Holtville, Home Gardens, Homeland, Hughson, Huntington Beach, Huntington Park, Huron, Imperial, Imperial Beach, Indian Wells, Indio, Inglewood, Interlaken, Ione, Irvine, Isla Vista, Jamul, Joshua Tree, Jurupa Valley, Kensington, Kentfield, Kerman, Keyes, King City, Kingsburg, La Cañada Flintridge, La Crescenta-Montrose, Ladera Heights, Ladera Ranch, Lafayette, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Woods, La Habra, La Habra Heights, Lake Arrowhead, Lake Elsinore, Lake Forest, Lakeland Village, Lake Los Angeles, Lake Mathews, Lakeside, Lake Wildwood, Lakewood, La Mesa, La Mirada, Lamont, Lancaster, La Palma, La Presa, La Puente, La Quinta, La Riviera, Larkfield-Wikiup, Larkspur, Las Flores, Lathrop, La Verne, Lawndale, Lemon Grove, Lemon Hill, Lemoore, Lemoore Station, Lennox, Lincoln, Linda, Lindsay, Live Oak, Live Oak, Livermore, Livingston, Lodi, Loma Linda, Lomita, Lompoc, Long Beach, Loomis, Los Alamitos, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Los Angeles, Los Banos, Los Gatos, Los Osos, Lucas Valley-Marinwood, Lucerne Valley, Lynwood, Madera, Madera Acres, Magalia, Malibu, Mammoth Lakes, Manhattan Beach, Manteca, Marina, Marina del Rey, Martinez, Marysville, Mayflower Village, Maywood, McFarland, McKinleyville, Mead Valley, Mecca, Mendota, Menifee, Menlo Park, Mentone, Merced, Midway City, Millbrae, Mill Valley, Milpitas, Mira Monte, Mission Viejo, Modesto, Monrovia, Montclair, Montebello, Montecito, Monterey, Monterey Park, Moorpark, Moraga, Moreno Valley, Morgan Hill, Morro Bay, Mountain House, Mountain View, Murrieta, Muscoy, Myrtletown, Napa, National City, Newark, Newman, Newport Beach, Nipomo, Norco, North Auburn, North Fair Oaks, North Highlands, North Tustin, Norwalk, Novato, Nuevo, Oakdale, Oak Hills, Oakland, Oakley, Oak Park, Oceano, Oceanside, Oildale, Ojai, Old Fig Garden, Olivehurst, Ontario, Orange, Orange Cove, Orangevale, Orcutt, Orinda, Orland, Orosi, Oroville, Oroville East, Oxnard, Pacifica, Pacific Grove, Palermo, Palmdale, Palm Desert, Palm Springs, Palo Alto, Palos Verdes Estates, Paramount, Parkway, Parlier, Pasadena, Patterson, Perris, Petaluma, Phelan, Pico Rivera, Piedmont, Pinole, Piñon Hills, Pismo Beach, Pittsburg, Placentia, Placerville, Pleasant Hill, Pleasanton, Pleasure Point, Plumas Lake, Pollock Pines, Pomona, Porterville, Port Hueneme, Poway, Prunedale, Quartz Hill, Ramona, Rancho Calaveras, Rancho Cordova, Rancho Cucamonga, Rancho Mirage, Rancho Murieta, Rancho Palos Verdes, Rancho San Diego, Rancho Santa Margarita, Red Bluff, Redding, Redlands, Redondo Beach, Redwood City, Reedley, Rialto, Richmond, Ridgecrest, Rio del Mar, Rio Linda, Rio Vista, Ripon, Riverbank, Riverside, Rocklin, Rodeo, Rohnert Park, Rolling Hills Estates, Rosamond, Rosedale, Rosemead, Rosemont, Roseville, Rossmoor, Rowland Heights, Sacramento, Salida, Salinas, Salton City, San Anselmo, San Bernardino, San Bruno, San Buenaventura (Ventura), San Carlos, San Clemente, San Diego, San Diego Country Estates, San Dimas, San Fernando, San Francisco, San Gabriel, Sanger, San Jacinto, San Jose, San Juan Capistrano, San Leandro, San Lorenzo, San Luis Obispo, San Marcos, San Marino, San Martin, San Mateo, San Pablo, San Rafael, San Ramon, Santa Ana, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Santa Clarita, Santa Cruz, Santa Fe Springs, Santa Maria, Santa Monica, Santa Paula, Santa Rosa, Santee, Saranap, Saratoga, Sausalito, Scotts Valley, Seal Beach, Seaside, Sebastopol, Selma, Shafter, Shasta Lake, Sierra Madre, Signal Hill, Silver Lakes, Simi Valley, Solana Beach, Soledad, Solvang, Sonoma, Soquel, South El Monte, South Gate, South Lake Tahoe, South Monrovia Island, South Pasadena, South San Francisco, South San Gabriel, South San Jose Hills, South Whittier, Spring Valley, Spring Valley Lake, Stanford, Stanton, Stevenson Ranch, St. Helena, Stockton, Strawberry, Suisun City, Sunnyvale, Sun Village, Susanville, Taft, Tamalpais-Homestead Valley, Tara Hills, Tehachapi, Temecula, Temescal Valley, Temple City, Templeton, Thermalito, Thousand Oaks, Thousand Palms, Tiburon, Topanga, Torrance, Tracy, Truckee, Tulare, Turlock, Tustin, Twentynine Palms, Twin Lakes, Ukiah, Union City, University of California-Davis, Upland, Vacaville, Valinda, Vallejo, Valle Vista, Valley Center, Vandenberg Village, Victorville, View Park-Windsor Hills, Villa Park, Vincent, Vineyard, Visalia, Vista, Walnut, Walnut Creek, Walnut Park, Wasco, Waterford, Watsonville, West Athens, West Carson, West Covina, West Hollywood, Westlake Village, Westminster, West Modesto, Westmont, West Puente Valley, West Rancho Dominguez, West Sacramento, West Whittier-Los Nietos, Whittier, Wildomar, Williams, Willowbrook, Willows, Wilton, Windsor, Winter Gardens, Winters, Winton, Woodcrest, Woodlake, Woodland, Woodside, Yorba Linda, Yosemite Lakes, Yreka, Yuba City, Yucaipa, Yucca Valley
How do I determine my entitlement level?
The VA Certificate of Eligibility, or COE, is what informs lenders of an applicant’s eligibility for a VA loan. It also indicates your level of entitlement. The COE helps the VA and your lender to communicate. Your COE may not make much sense at first glance. As an example, if a COE reflects a basic entitlement of $36,000, that number shows how much loan insurance the VA offers through the VA guarantee, rather than your potential borrowing potential. This VA insurance reduces the risk for the lender and eliminates the need to make a down payment or monthly mortgage insurance payments. The VA covers 25% of the amount you borrow on your home loan, regardless of how much it is approved by the lender. You may also want to refer to a VA loan calculator to help figure out your entitlement and potential borrowing power.
What does full entitlement refer to?
The maximum VA home loan benefits you’re eligible for is known as full entitlement. If you’re a first-time home buyer or it’s you’re first time using a VA loan, you’re likely to have a full entitlement. If you’ve used your VA benefits before, you may still be eligible for a full entitlement if the loan is fully repaid and your benefit is restored. Otherwise, you may be a borrowers that’s eligible for partial entitlement. That may be the case for someone who used an California VA loan to purchase a home a few years back and is still paying that loan off. With a partial entitlement, an applicant may still be eligible for a VA loan but the mortgage must not exceed their local max loan amount for VA financing. There are other caveats that may apply related to your VA home loan entitlement eligibility. As an example, current VA loan holders or former borrowers who have been foreclosed will not be eligible for their full entitlement. You won’t get your full entitlement if you’ve short-sold a VA-backed loan which the VA had to reimburse. In fact, if you’ve had a foreclosure or short-sale in your past, you might not be eligible to receive another VA loan at all.
What is the maximum amount I can borrow if I have partial eligibility?
Since 2020, specific CA VA loan limits only apply to partial entitlement. Those mortgage limits are identical to the conventional conforming loan limit for a particular area. Conventional loan limits are set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) each year. The loan limits will depend on where you live and the property you purchase. They are determined based on local home prices. This FHFA map will show you the loan limits for your county. It’s not difficult to determine your county’s loan limit. However, it can be complicated to calculate how this limit will affect your home loan. To determine if you will need a downpayment on the VA loan, lenders use a complex equation. You can read our guide on buying an additional house with a VA loan. Talk to a VA lender if you only want to find out how much house you could afford using a VA loan. In just a few minutes, they can calculate your home’s potential price and look up your COE.
California VA Home Loan Limits 2022 Map (for partial eligibility applicants)
California VA County Loan Limits 2022 (for partial eligibility applicants)
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VA Loan FAQs
Can closing costs be included in a VA Loan?
If you don’t have enough funds to cover closing costs on your new home, you can include certain costs in your VA loan. You also have the option to roll your funding fee into your total mortgage amount. As for the fees that can’t be rolled into your mortgage per VA loan qualifications, you may still be eligible for seller or lender concessions that will lower the upfront cash cost.
What are the closing costs for a VA loan?
Borrowers generally pay different closing costs depending on where they live and the particulars of their transaction you have. Closing costs are often within the range of 3% and 5% of the total mortgage amount.
Who pays the closing costs of a VA loan?
The closing costs of a VA loan are generally split between the seller and buyer, however the seller costs must not exceed 4% of the total loan amount. The seller’s share usually includes the commission for real estate agents.
You, as the buyer, are responsible for the VA funding fee, origination fee and discount points, VA appraisal fee, title fees, and other costs, some of which can be financed. Fortunately, VA home loan requirements establish limitations on costs for home buyers, and also help you keep costs down by limiting the origination fee.