Updated April, 2015
VA Streamline Refinance: AKA The VA IRRRL Program
If you currently have a VA loan and are looking to save money on your monthly mortgage payment by lowering your interest rate, the VA streamline refinance program is worth learning more about.
The VA streamline refinance is the most popular refinance program for Veterans who currently have a VA loan because it allows you to get a lower interest rate with the least possible hassle. Many VA approved lenders will offer the benefits of:
- No credit check
- No appraisal required
- No out-of-pocket expenses
- Streamline refinance a primary residence (as long as you can certify that you previously owned the property)
VA Streamline Refinance Qualifications
In order to qualify for a VA streamline refinance, you must meet the following requirements:
- Up-to-date on your mortgage payments without exceeding a one 30-day late pay within the past 12 months.
- The new VA monthly mortgage payment must be lower compared with the original VA mortgage payments prior to the refinance (this would usually pertain to switching from an ARM to a Fixed-Rate Mortgage).
- You can not expect to receive any cash from the refinance but only to save.
- The property in which you choose to refinance must be the one that you previously uses your VA entitlement for. (You may see this referred to as a VA-to-VA refinance.)
- The VA streamline refinance is also known as the VA IRRRL program (which stands for Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan) and they are the exact same program ”“ just referred to by two different names.
VA Streamline IRRRL General facts and Guidelines
Some simple facts and general guidelines about the VA streamline refinance program include:
- The VA streamline has less documentation than a full refinance and many times the lender can close faster with less documentation than a full refinance.
- Many lenders can do a VA streamline without requiring an appraisal. The VA does not require an appraisal, credit information, or underwriting, but your some VA approved lenders may require some or all of these items.
- It is possible to roll all closing costs and fees into the new loan so there are no out-of-pocket costs when doing a VA streamline.
- One rule for the VA streamline is that the new monthly payment must be lower than the previous loan’s monthly payment. One exception to this rule is when you are refinancing an adjustable rate mortgage or the new loan term is less than the old one.
- Your new interest rate must have a lower interest rate than the previous loan. An exception is if you are refinancing from an adjustable rate loan.
- With the VA streamline program, your new loan can be a fixed rate or adjustable rate loan.
- A VA funding fee is usually required.
- The VA streamline program allows for energy efficient improvements can be refinanced into the loan, up to $6000.
- Your monthly mortgage payment may increase if you finance energy efficient home improvements, finance your closing costs including the funding fees, finance points, or get a higher interest rate if you move to a fixed rate loan.
- The VA streamline program does not allow you to receive any cash out at the loan closing.
- You must be current on your existing VA mortgage and not have had more than one 30-day late mortgage payment within the past 12 months.
VA Streamline: Get The Best Deal
There is one simple thing you can do to get the best deal on a VA streamline: shop multiple lenders and get multiple quotes. Shopping multiple lenders is easy – simply fill out a form and get a quote from multiple lenders who can help you understand if the VA streamline program is right for you and how much you can save – or if you can save money at all.