War Vets Can Now Buy Co-ops With VA Loans

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Scoring a major victory for war veterans, particularly those in New York City, both houses of Congress approved legislation last week allowing veterans to use Veteran’s Administration (VA) loans to purchase cooperative housing.
by John Toscano

Presently VA loans can be used only to purchase a house, townhouse, condominium or a mobile home.

Congressmember Carolyn Maloney, who sponsored the approved legislation with U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, explained: Without the option of cooperative housing, using VA loans wasn’t realistic for many veterans in New York City.

VA loans should be available for all types of housing, Maloney (DQueens/Manhattan) continued. There is no reason New York City coops should be excluded. With this action, veterans in New York City and around the country will finally see their housing options expand.

Schumer (DNew York) stated, New York veterans have been getting the short end of the stick when it comes to housing for far too long. Until now, the loans could be used for just about anything but co-ops, the majority of housing in New York City. The bottom line is: those that fight for our country shouldn’t have to fight for a place to live. Our bill will open up those options, easing the burden on our heroes.  (continued)

     

Maloney first introduced her Veterans Housing Fairness Act in 1995, after learning that a constituent had attempted to purchase a residential cooperative unit, but was told that his VA loan could not be used to buy the property. The most recent version of her bill was introduced last December.

Schumer first introduced the Senate version of the VA co-op bill in 2001 and was successful in having his bill merged with others that finally passed both houses.

The VA loan program allows veterans to purchase homes with no down payment and limited closing fees. The program also offers negotiable interest rates and flexible repayment plans.

Extending these generous loan benefits to the purchasers of co-op apartments would be a boon to New York City veterans, Maloney said.


http://www.qgazette.com/news/2006/1213/features/034.html

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