Who has the VA eligibility? If the parent has the VA loan, they must purchase the property, and must be owner-occupants. They cannot "give" the eligibility to their children. One of our listings was recently sold on a VA loan, so the lenders really are making them. The biggest advantage to ta VA loan is that there is no down payment.
There are several ways you can help a child purchase a home: 1.) The most common is a gift of the down payment funds, with the children being the actual purchasers. (If there is a divorce, each spouse gets half the equity in the property. You must sign a gift letter stating that you do not expect repayment.) . 2.) You may co-sign for your children as a co-borrower if their credit is not sufficient. Be aware, if they do not make the payments, you are as liable as they are. If they make late payments, it will show up on your credit report. (If they already have bad credit, and you have good credit, you might not want to go this route. There is a reason their credit is bad and you may not be getting the whole story.) 3.) You can purchase the home as the owner and allow them to live in it and make the payments. If you live in the property, you can get an owner-occupant loan, with lower interest rates and lower down payment, depending on credit and income. If you will not be living in the property, you will have to qualify for an investor loan, with higher down payment and a higher interest rate.
In our area, there are virtually no 2-family homes in one house in the same sense that they have them back east. There are many homes with in-law quarters, guest houses, and casitas. It all depends on your price range and where you want to be in the valley.
Your best bet is to contact a reputable lender here in the Las Vegas Valley who is familiar lending requirements and can tell you pretty quickly what program you need to be on.
Yes, there are still VA loans. I'm working with two buyers right now who are purchasing using their VA. The advantages are no down payment, but it must be owner occupied and the VA must be able to qualify for the loan.
I'd be happy to work with you directly if that is an option for you and the kids. Give me a call or drop me an email.
Rosen & Company West
http://www.federalhousingtaxcredit.com/2009/faq.php#2 - this pertains to the first time home buyer tax credit and who qualifies. Whether or not you're looking to take advantage of the tax credit, you'll find this information helpful.
There are still VA and FHA loans. However, when buying properties in the hottest price ranges in areas of affordability, cash trumps other offers. FHA can take 45 days or longer to close escrow --- and sellers prefer faster closing. Also, FHA and VA have very stringent rules before they approve a loan, and sellers may not be receptive to bringing their property to meet FHA and VA guidelines.
The advantage to VA is 100% financing, no down payment. The disadvantage is that VA guidelines and timelines are so hard to meet that property owners are reluctant to even look at this type of loans, if the other buyers are coming in with higher initial deposits and down payments which signal the buyers' ability to close a transaction.
Here's a recent article in San Francisco Chronicle regarding VA loans that you may want to read: