38 U.S.C. § 3703 - Basic provisions relating to loan guaranty and insurance

Cite as:38 U.S.C. § 3703
Currency:Current through P.L. 116-158 (08/14/2020)
 
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(a)

(1)

(A) Any loan to a veteran eligible for benefits under this chapter, if made for any of the purposes specified in section 3710 of this title and in compliance with the provisions of this chapter, is automatically guaranteed by the United States in an amount not to exceed the lesser of-

(i)

(I) in the case of any loan of not more than $45,000, 50 percent of the loan;

(II) in the case of any loan of more than $45,000, but not more than $56,250, $22,500;

(III) except as provided in subclause (IV) of this clause, in the case of any loan of more than $56,250, the lesser of $36,000 or 40 percent of the loan; or

(IV) in the case of any loan of more than $144,000 for a purpose specified in clause (1), (2), (3), (5), (6), or (8) of section 3710(a) of this title, 25 percent of the loan; or

(ii) the maximum amount of guaranty entitlement available to the veteran as specified in subparagraph (B) or (C).

(B) With respect to loans described in subclauses (I), (II), or (III) of subparagraph (A)(i), the maximum amount of guaranty entitlement available to a veteran for purposes specified in section 3710 of this title shall be $36,000, reduced by the amount of entitlement previously used by the veteran under this chapter and not restored as a result of the exclusion in section 3702(b) of this title.

(C)

(i) With respect to loans described in subclause (IV) of subparagraph (A)(i) made to a veteran not covered by clause (ii), the maximum amount of guaranty entitlement available to the veteran shall be 25 percent of the loan.

(ii) With respect to loans described in subclause (IV) of subparagraph (A)(i) made to a covered veteran, the maximum amount of guaranty entitlement available to the veteran shall be 25 percent of the Freddie Mac conforming loan limit, reduced by the amount of entitlement previously used by the veteran under this chapter and not restored as a result of the exclusion in section 3702(b) of this title.

(iii) In this subparagraph:

(I) The term "covered veteran" means a veteran who has previously used entitlement under this chapter and for whom the full amount of entitlement so used has not been restored as a result of the exclusion in section 3702(b) of this title.

(II) The term "Freddie Mac conforming loan limit" means the limit determined under section 305(a)(2) of the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation Act ( 12 U.S.C. 1454(a)(2) ) for a single-family residence, as adjusted for the year involved.

(2)

(A) Any housing loan which might be guaranteed under the provisions of this chapter, when made or purchased by any financial institution subject to examination and supervision by any agency of the United States or of any State may, in lieu of such guaranty, be insured by the Secretary under an agreement whereby the Secretary will reimburse any such institution for losses incurred on such loan up to 15 per centum of the aggregate of loans so made or purchased by it.

(B) Loans insured under this section shall be made on such other terms, conditions, and restrictions as the Secretary may prescribe within the limitations set forth in this chapter.

(b) The liability of the United States under any guaranty, within the limitations of this chapter, shall decrease or increase pro rata with any decrease or increase of the amount of the unpaid portion of the obligation.

(c)

(1) Loans guaranteed or insured under this chapter shall be payable upon such terms and conditions as may be agreed upon by the parties thereto, subject to the provisions of this chapter and regulations of the Secretary issued pursuant to this chapter, and shall bear interest not in excess of such rate as the Secretary may from time to time find the loan market demands, except that in establishing the rate of interest that shall be applicable to such loans, the Secretary shall consult with the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development regarding the rate of interest applicable to home loans insured under section 203(b) of the National Housing Act ( 12 U.S.C. 1709(b) ). In establishing rates of interest under this paragraph for one or more of the purposes described in clauses (4) and (7) of section 3710(a) of this title, the Secretary may establish a rate or rates higher than the rate specified for other purposes under such section, but any such rate may not exceed such rate as the Secretary may from time to time find the loan market demands for loans for such purposes.

(2) The provisions of the Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944 which were in effect before April 1, 1958, with respect to the interest chargeable on loans made or guaranteed under such Act shall, notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (1) of this subsection, continue to be applicable-

(A) to any loan made or guaranteed before April 1, 1958; and

(B) to any loan with respect to which a commitment to guarantee was entered into by the Secretary before April 1, 1958.

(3) This section shall not be construed to prohibit a veteran from paying to a lender any reasonable discount required by such lender, when the proceeds from the loan are to be used-

(A) to refinance indebtedness pursuant to clause (5), (8), or (9)(B)(i) of section 3710(a) of this title or section 3712(a)(1)(F) of this title;

(B) to repair, alter, or improve a farm residence or other dwelling pursuant to clauses (4) and (7) of section 3710(a) of this title;

(C) to construct a dwelling or farm residence on land already owned or to be acquired by the veteran except where the land is directly or indirectly acquired from a builder or developer who has contracted to construct such dwelling for the veteran;

(D) to purchase a dwelling from a class of sellers which the Secretary determines are legally precluded under all circumstances from paying such a discount if the best interest of the veteran would be so served; or

(E) to refinance indebtedness and purchase a manufactured-home lot pursuant to section 3710(a)(9)(B)(ii) or 3712(a)(1)(G) of this title, but only with respect to that portion of the loan used to refinance such indebtedness.

(4)

(A) In guaranteeing or insuring loans under this chapter, the Secretary may elect whether to require that such loans bear interest at a rate that is-

(i) agreed upon by the veteran and the mortgagee; or

(ii) established under paragraph (1).

The Secretary may, from time to time, change the election under this subparagraph.

(B) Any veteran, under a loan described in subparagraph (A)(i), may pay reasonable discount points in connection with the loan. Except in the case of a loan for the purpose specified in section 3710(a)(8), 3710(b)(7),or 3712(a)(1)(F) of this title, discount points may not be financed as part of the principal amount of a loan guaranteed or insured under this chapter.

(C) Not later than 10 days after an election under subparagraph (A), the Secretary shall transmit to the Committees on Veterans' Affairs of the Senate and House of Representatives a notification of the election, together with an explanation of the reasons therefor.

(d)

(1) The maturity of any housing loan at the time of origination shall not be more than thirty years and thirty-two days.

(2)

(A) Any loan for a term of more than five years shall be amortized in accordance with established procedure.

(B) The Secretary may guarantee loans with provisions for various rates of amortization corresponding to anticipated variations in family income. With respect to any loan guaranteed under this subparagraph-

(i) the initial principal amount of the loan may not exceed the reasonable value of the property as of the time the loan is made; and

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