Veterans in Hospice Care

Today I will be taking some time to attend an appreciation lunch put on by Hospice of the Valley (HOV) for volunteers for their Veterans Salutes Program. I was introduced to this program about 2 years ago or so through the Arizona Veterans Chamber of Commerce. Being a part of such an amazing experience is probably one of the most special things I have ever had the chance to participate in throughout my life. Designed to spend time with Veterans in their final hours, the Salutes program allows Veterans to be honored for their service to our great country by fellow Veterans. Naturally this is a great fit simply because the Veteran is able to relate to his fellow Vet having served himself. Throughout my experience with this program I have been truly blessed and touched to spend time with some such amazing men who served in WWII and Vietnam.

The Veteran Volunteers role during the ceremony is to try simply listen, ask questions about the about the Veterans service, and lastly honor them by pinning the with a HOV pin and giving them a their branch of service flag coupled with American flag. Once this has taken place there is one last order of business to conduct…the salute of the Veteran. Standing before the Veteran and the foot of his bed we will say the following… “Fellow Veteran on behalf of Veterans across the nation, and Hospice of the Valley we would like to thank you, and honor you for your service to our great country, thank you and may God bless you sir.”

I have laughed with Veteran patients, cried with families, and hugged their loved ones. By far one of the most rewarding things I have ever had the chance to be a part of in my life.

Hospice of the Valley is looking for more veterans and volunteers for this wonderful program so if this is something you are interested in you may contact me for more details at 480-538-4980.

Thank you, and may God bless you for our service to our great country.

Semper Fidelis,
Jimmy Vercellino

VA Mortgages Have Lowest Rate of Default

Over the years there has been a lot of misinformation as it relates to VA Mortgages. A stigma that has managed to attach itself to Veterans and VA Mortgages is that the borrower (the Veteran or Active Duty Service Member) is somehow less qualified because they are using their VA Home Loan Benefit. The reality is that this could not be further from the truth. According to a Press Release published by the Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs “Home loans guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs continue to have the lowest serious delinquency and foreclosure rates in the mortgage industry. Veterans have also taken advantage of their home loan benefit in record numbers, as VA loan originations reached their highest total in eight years.”

The Press Release goes on to state that “According to the Mortgage Bankers Association National Delinquency Survey, VA’s foreclosure rate for the last 14 quarters and serious delinquency rate for the last 11 quarters have been the lowest of all measured loan types, even prime loans.”

Thats some pretty powerful information wouldn’t you say? VA Mortgages have performed, meaning VA borrowers by enlarge continue to make their monthly VA Mortgage payments on time more than any other type of home loan on the market today be it Conventional or FHA. My personal feeling is that this is a direct reflection of the integrity of our great men and women who serve and have served our country.


Having said said, it’s important to understand that your VA Mortgage is one of the best product options available to our nations finest who have so honorably defended this great nation. So if you are in the market to purchase a home and have not considered using your VA Home Loan, it’s time to reconsider. The VA Mortgage has been, and will continue to be one of the very best home loan options available on the market.

If you have questions about your VA Home Loan and VA Mortgages in general, feel free to give us a call at 480-538-4980 or email me at

Thank you and may God bless you for your service to our great country.

Semper Fidelis,
Jimmy Vercellino

Press Release Cited Below

Arizona VA Streamline Refinance

Hey Everybody,

All but 2 months ago here in Arizona we thought the VA Streamline Refinance was gone forever, a victim to the ever increasing interest rate climate over the last few months . But the funny part about the mortgage industry is that just when we think we have it figured out it throws us another curve ball. I say this because over the past couple of weeks we have seen a large decrease in VA Streamline Refinance rates putting Arizona Veterans and Active Duty Military homeowners back into play who may have missed out on the last refinance boom affording them the opportunity to possibly save hundreds of dollars a month and even thousands of dollars over the life of the loan.

The VA Streamline Refinance is probably one of the most unique loans that are available for Veterans and Active Duty Military. With no appraisal needed (saving you $450), along with no income documents (Pay Stubs, W-2’s, Tax Returns), or even bank statements required, this loan is a walk in the park. Here is how I explain the VA Streamline Refinance process to my Veteran and Active Duty Military clients here in Arizona… “We simply shuffle some paperwork and roughly 20 days later close your loan with zero out of pocket expenses.” Okay, so there is more to it than that, but you get the point right? However what I mentioned was true. The VA Streamline Refinance allows you to roll all of the costs into the home loan essentially allowing you to close escrow and not bring one dollar to the closing table.

If your current VA interest rate is at 5% or higher, the VA Streamline Refinance may be right for you. For a free VA Streamline Refinance quote and analysis feel free to give us a call directly at 480-538-4980.

Please know that we are here to serve you with all of your VA Streamline Refinance needs.

Thank you and may God bless you for your service to our great country!

Semper Fidelis,
Jimmy Vercellino

4 Ways to get your VA Loan Offer Accepted

Sometimes people encounter difficulty when shopping for a new home and using a VA Loan. However please understand that is does not have to be. The video below is something that I put together for Veterans, Active Duty and Real Estate Agents that designed to increase the likelihood that there next VA Loan Offer is accepted on the home of their dreams.

4 Ways to get a VA Loan Offer Accepted

Hi Everybody!

I wanted to take a moment to share with you 4 things that you can do to increase the chances that your next VA Loan offer gets accepted when you are writing an offer on a home.

#1 Make sure that you are working with a VA Loan Specialist.

#2 Make sure your VA Loan Specialist contacts the listing agent to introduce themselves, brag about you (the buyer) and of course speak intelligently about the VA Home Loan process.

#3 Make sure that your VA Loan specialist provides a copy of the DU or LP findings showing that you have an automated approval. This will make you stand out in a crowd. Attention to detail.

#4 Write a cover letter. Introduce yourself, tell them about your service. Tug at their heartstrings a little bit. Veterans should get preferential treatment.

Doing these 4 things on any offer, not just VA Loans can really increase the chances that your next offer is accepted on your property.

Semper Fidelis,
Jimmy Vercellino

VA Appraisal Process-Is it Really That Bad???

The VA Appraisal process is takes too long!

The VA Appraisers are more conservative than other conventional appraisers!

The VA will nit-pick the condition of the property!

These Claims are NOT True!

Throughout the last 8 years serving Veterans and Active Duty Military with all of their VA Home Financing needs I continue to encounter one reoccurring claim within the real estate community that still lingers and has a real impact on Veterans and Active Duty Military. That claim is that the VA Appraisal process is terrible.

Claims such as those listed above are what I hear pretty much on a daily basis, often times proving to have detrimental impact on the Veteran or Service Members and their families, who may ultimately be passed up by a seller afraid to accepting their offer.

Here are the Facts

Please, please, please, understand that if claims such as these were true I would probably be out of a job due to the fact that the overwhelming majority of my clients I serve are Veterans and Active Duty Military!

The VA Appraisal process takes no more than 7-10 business days and sometimes sooner.

The VA Appraisal Process uses the exact same market comparable properties just as any other appraiser would.

VA Appraisers ensure that the property is safe, and that no real safety hazards exist.

Having said that, my experience has been that those that make such claims do not fully understand the VA Appraisal process and what it is designed to do.

What the VA Loan Process is DESIGNED TO DO

First off, the VA Appraisal process is designed to protect the Veteran, ensuring that they do not overpay for a property, and in the event that they are, give them an opportunity to legally withdraw of the transaction with no recourse (sounds like a good deal to me).
The VA Appraisal process is unlike any other appraisal process that exists which makes it (in my opinion) extremely advantageous for the Veteran and Active Duty Service Members.

Let’s take a look at how it works.

  1. First off, understand that the VA Appraiser that goes out to inspect the home does not work for the VA. The VA Appraiser is an independent contractor, licensed by the Department of Veterans Affairs, who will perform the task of appraising the property to ensure that the home meets the contracted sales price, as well as confirm that the property is safe, sanitary, and secure.
  2. Once the VA Appraiser has inspected the property he or she will then upload that VA Appraisal to the VA Website commonly referred to as the VA Portal. Once this takes place your lender will then be able to go in and retrieve a copy of your VA Appraisal once the Senior Appraisal Reviewer (SAR) issues what is called the Notice of Value (NOV). If you have made it this far that means your property has appraised with no value issues.
  3. Let’s take it a step further… Let’s say the VA Appraiser goes out to inspect the property and is having trouble meeting the contracted sales price. The VA Appraiser will then issue what is called a Tidewater Notice. The Tidewater Notice is designed to notify all parties involved in the transaction that they are having difficulty coming up with the contracted value on the home from their research.From here the Veteran or Service Member has options.

— If they feel the property should meet the agreed upon purchase price they can notify their Realtor to provide additional comparable properties that justify the value of the home.

— Or, if they choose, they can also tell their Agent to instruct the VA Appraiser to issue the appraisal at the value VA Appraiser had before reviewing the additional comps.

Here is What I Like About the VA Appraisal Process

The Veteran has options on the VA Appraisal process. In the competitive market that we are in today it’s not uncommon for sellers to aggressively price their homes. Sellers should understand that the VA Appraisal process is the only type of appraisal that will allow them to make a case for the value of their property. FHA and Conventional home loans simply issue value, and more often than not call it a day.

Bringing us home (pardon the pun), I am sure that there has been some bad apple appraisers out there in the past that have brought some negative PR to the VA Appraisal process. But honestly, it is not anywhere near as bad as many paint it out to be. The reality is that the majority of Veterans and Service Members that buy their home with a VA Home Loan have no issues at all.

Dare I say that if I were a seller I would encourage a VA Home Loan for the reasons listed above? Not to mention, the VA Appraisal process does not make you order 2 appraisals like FHA loans when purchasing a property that as been owned less than 90 days by the seller.

If you feel like you are not being explained the VA Appraisal process like you should…That’s what we are here for, to serve YOU!

Please call us at 480-351-5904 or email me at for all of your VA Appraisal process questions.

Most of all, thank you for your service to our great country.

Semper Fidelis,
Jimmy Vercellino









VA Home Loan, Short Sale, Foreclosure, and Bankruptcy Waiting Periods

There are a lot of questions that Veteran home buyers have as it relates to purchasing a home with the VA Home Loan benefit. This could not be more true regarding the waiting periods after a short sale, foreclosure and bankruptcy. The reality is that many Veterans were affected by the recent recession leaving millions with no choice other than to short sale, foreclose, or file for bankruptcy . Fast forward a couple of years and things finally seem to be getting better for our nation. Veterans who may have had a short sale, foreclosure or bankruptcy in the past find themselves considering purchasing a home again, but are unsure of the waiting periods required. Many people are quick to cite 3 , 5, and I have even heard as many as 7 years after one of these events. So which is it? Let’s take a look at what VA Home Loan guidelines say about this.


Short Sale- The VA Home Loan does not have a specific policy on Short Sales. Lenders are to apply prudent underwriting practices when approving these loans. If the Veteran has had a short sale less than 2 years old and your are able to prove why it happened, and why it won’t happen again, you may be eligible before the 2 year typical waiting period for foreclosures and bankruptcy.

Foreclosure- Typically a 2 year waiting period on a VA Home Loan. However, in some circumstances if you can prove that the reason behind the foreclosure was beyond the Veterans control you may be able to buy sooner. Keep in mind that the Veteran must have reestablished their credit after the event by demonstrating an on time payment history.

Bankruptcy- Same rules apply as foreclosure on a VA Home loan.

Chapter 13 Bankruptcy- Must document 1 year of on time payment history to the Trustee. You must also provide a letter from the Trustee stating that obtaining a new VA Home Loan will not prohibit the Veteran from continuing to make the current monthly obligation required to be paid to the Trustee.

So there you have it Veterans. If you are in the market to purchase a home and have had an event in the past that you think will hold you back from buying, think again. You may be able to get out there and purchase today. Call me today at 602-908-5849

Thank you and may God bless you for your service to our great country!

Semper Fidelis,
Jimmy Vercellino

More than 1 VA Home Loan at a Time? Yes, it’s True!

Many veterans have no idea they are actually able to use more than one VA home loan at a time. Yes, it’s true! A Veteran may actually have more than one home loan at a time. How can this be, you ask? It’s called VA Bonus Entitlement. Simply stated, as long as you have sufficient VA Entitlement for the VA home loan, you can have more than one at a time. There are a lot of Veterans out there today that would love to be able to purchase a new home – in a more desirable location, better school district, with more square footage – who have no idea that they really can. Let’s take a look at an example below.

A Veteran buys a home with his or her VA home loan in 2006 for $150,000 and would love to take advantage of the market that we are in today. Our Veteran can actually rent out their current home and use that rental income to offset that mortgage payment up to 75% . Most mortgage products will require you to have 25% equity in the home or you must have rented out that property for two years to do this, but not with a VA Home Looan. Our Veteran now has the ability to go out and shop for a new home with their VA Home Loan from $144,000 up to $267,000 with NO down payment! As a Veteran, you must have sufficient VA Entitlement available and the home being purchased must be owner-occupied. [This summary is based on a $350,000 loan amount, loan term of 360 months and an interest rate of 4.5%.]

Are you interested in seeing if the VA Bonus Entitlement is something that you are eligible for? Give me a call – I speak your language and I know what it means to serve.

Semper Fidelis,
Jimmy Vercellino

Top 5 VA Home Loan Myth’s

For as long as I have been serving Veterans with their VA Home Loan Benefits I have heard a number of misconceptions as it relates to our VA Home Loan Benefits. These misconceptions, or shall we say myths, can have a negative impact on us for obvious reasons. For example a Veteran may opt to go with a more expensive mortgage product like a FHA Home Loan which can end up being significantly more expensive over time. So back to the myths. What are they? Let’s take a look at the top 5 VA loan myths that heard throughout my career as a Mortgage Banker Specializing in VA Home Loans.

VA MYTH # 1. VA Home Loans take too long to close.

Not true. Many lenders quote 45-60 days to close a VA Home Loan. However, just because it may take that particular lending institution 45-60 days to close does not mean that is how long it takes to close a VA Home Loan. The VA Home Loans that we close at PrimeLending typically take no more than 30 days.

VA MYTH # 2. VA Appraisal Process is much more difficult.

Again, not true. The reality is I would not be in business if this were the case as90% of the Home Loans that I originate are VA. VA Home Loans have multiple steps in place to protect the Veteran from overpaying for the home.

VA MYTH # 3. VA Home Loan qualifying is much more difficult.

The VA Home Loan is the most unique home loan that exist and one of the things that I love about it is that VA has applied common sense lending practices to serve Veterans. However, it’s entirely untrue to say that it’s more difficult. The truth is that in some ways they make it much easier for a Veteran to obtain financing take for example the no down payment option.

VA MYTH # 4. You can only have 1 VA Home Loan at a time.

False. A Veteran can actually have more than 1 VA Home Loan at a time as long as they have sufficient entitlement. This allows Veterans to seek financing for another home in a more desirable location while maintaining the property they are vacating that currently has a VA Home Loan on it.

VA MYTH # 5. A Veteran can only use their VA Home Loan once.

I have heard this from a lot of Veterans that served during the Korean and Vietnam conflicts. However, it’s not true. A Veteran may use his VA Home Loan as many times as they would like as long as they have sufficient entitlement.

So there you have it, the top 5 VA Home Loan myths. My hope is that you learned something about your VA Home Loan benefit after reading this. Of course, if you have any questions you may contact me me directly at my office at 480-538-4980 or email me at

Thank you and may God Bless you for your service to our great country.

Semper Fidelis,
Jimmy Vercellino