VA Loan Rules Second Home

VA loans are a great option for veterans and active-duty military members who are looking to purchase or refinance a home. However, many people are unaware of the rules surrounding using their VA loan benefits for a second home. In this article, we will explore the VA loan rules for a second home purchase.

What is a VA Loan?

Firstly, let’s take a brief look at what a VA loan is. A VA loan is a mortgage loan program that is guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. This program is designed to help veterans, active-duty service members, and eligible surviving spouses become homeowners. VA loans offer many benefits, including no down payment, no private mortgage insurance, and competitive interest rates.

Can You Use a VA Loan for a Second Home?

Yes, you can use a VA loan to purchase a second home. However, there are certain rules and requirements that you must follow in order to be eligible for a VA loan on a second home.

Occupancy Requirements

One of the main requirements of a VA loan is that the borrower must occupy the property as their primary residence. This means that if you want to use a VA loan for a second home, you must still occupy the property for a significant portion of the year. The VA does not specify a minimum amount of time that you must spend in the property, but you must have a plan to occupy it as your primary residence.


Another important factor to consider when using a VA loan for a second home is your entitlement. Your entitlement is the amount of money that the VA will guarantee for your loan. The VA guarantees up to 25% of the loan amount, which means that you can borrow up to four times your entitlement. However, if you have an active VA loan on your primary residence, your entitlement will be reduced, which may limit your ability to borrow for a second home.

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Loan Limits

The VA has loan limits for each county in the United States. These limits represent the maximum amount that you can borrow with a VA loan. If you want to purchase a second home with a VA loan, you will need to make sure that the loan amount does not exceed the loan limit for the county where the property is located.

Property Type

The VA has specific rules regarding the type of property that you can purchase with a VA loan. The property must be a single-family home, duplex, triplex, or fourplex. Additionally, the property must be in a livable condition and meet certain safety standards.

Using Rental Income

If you plan to rent out your second home, you may be able to use the rental income to help qualify for the loan. However, you will need to provide documentation of the rental income and have a solid plan for managing the property as a rental.


Using a VA loan for a second home can be a great option for military members who want to invest in real estate or have a vacation home. However, there are certain rules and requirements that you must follow in order to be eligible for a VA loan on a second home. If you are interested in using a VA loan for a second home, it is important to work with a lender who is experienced in VA loans and can guide you through the process.