VA Occupancy Requirements

VA loans are Owner Occupied loans, meaning  borrowers are expected to live in the properties they purchase.

For most borrowers, that is not a problem, but the issue of occupancy is important, and can cause confusion.  This is especially true for first-time home buyers.


While VA loans are flexible, government-backed loans, Veterans can’t use one to purchase investment properties or vacation homes. Nevertheless,  the advantages of a VA home loan typically make it the best loan available.

Because VA loans are meant for the purchase or refinance of the borrower’s primary residence, the VA has developed occupancy requirements to ensure owner occupied home ownership.

Occupancy Requirements

Veterans and active duty personnel who secure a VA loan must certify that they intend to personally occupy the property as a primary residence. As a result, home buyers typically have 60 days to occupy the home after the loan closes.  The agency considers this a “reasonable time”.

Occasionally, buyers may find that two months isn’t enough time. The VA does allow homeowners to go beyond that 60-day mark under certain circumstances, however, occupancy at a date beyond one year is generally unacceptable.

Occupancy rules can be especially important for active duty personnel.

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Todd McManigal  505-918-1028   NMLS # 267557

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