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Contributor

My wife and I recently applied for a VA home loan with USAA, and while the staff seemed relatively inexperienced, they seemed eager to help us on our journey to become home owners. I would like to set the stage by saying USAA has been the backbone of our family's financial needs, to include Checking, Savings, Car Insurance, Valuable Personal Property Ins, Renters Ins, Individual Brokerages, and Roth IRA. In the past they have treated us very fairly and professionally, but this does not make up for the events that have unfolded in the last few weeks. After obtaining a pre-qualification for a new mortgage (we specifically asked if this was a pre approval or pre-qualification) and they stated it was "the higher of the two." And "it's called different things in different states." I work on commission which I was very up-front about and they stated they would be able to make us an exception no problem. I was initially skeptical since we had trouble with my commission based income in the past, and insisted they review my application with underwriters and superiors. After reviewing my application with their managers and underwriters they assured us we were more than qualified and should begin to look for a home. After finding the perfect home for our growing family we notified USAA who assigned our case to Brandy XXXXXXX. She gave us a laundry list of documents to sign, all of which we completed in a timely manner. After weeks of signing documents to include the official purchase and sale agreement, USAA even sent out an appraiser to the property. We had a scheduled closing date and has begun to pack our personal belongings for the upcoming move. 3 weeks from closing, I called Brandy (who is practically non-accessible, a sort of Wizard of Oz) who stated we were no longer approved for our mortgage. She stated it was because I did not have 2 years of commission based income (which was OUR WHOLE CONCERN FROM THE BEGINNING). My family is crushed and have no where to go, aside from re-leasing our apartment assuming they have availability this short notice. I'm embarrassed, ashamed, and disappointed. After all these years of dedication to USAA they let us down when we needed them most. We will be migrating our financials to more reputable financial institutions, and no longer recommending them to fellow servicemen and women. Wish us luck - The Geoghegans.

5 REPLIES

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I had the same exact thing happen to me two years ago. I was a bit surprised when I was denied because a make well over the average income. The funny thing is I was able to get a loan from Wells Fargo and I haven't missed a payment since I obtained the loan. USAA missed out on an opportunity with you and I both but I still won't leave because I've used other financial institutions and none can compare to the customer service and value of USAA! I wish my mortgage was with USAA but I understand their policy they just should let people like you and me apply for a loan knowing it will get denied on a technicality. Good luck at your new bank.
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Correction " just SHOULDN'T let"
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Mike,

 

There is really no way to determine if you will qualify for a mortgage loan until you have applied and been through the underwriting policy.  There are way too many factor that have to be considered.  For a VA, not only do they have to meet their guidelines, but also the banks underwriting guidelines.

 

The two years commission history is not an absolute barrier to obtaining a VA Mortgage (or FHA mortgage).  

 

Keep in mind that each bank's underwriting policy can differ.  The Big Banks such as BOA or Wells Fargo have way more funds to deal with than USAA (and many credit unions), which allows them to accept more risk.  It is possible to get a mortgage with them after being denied elsewhere - like RWB did.

 

USAA should be able to tell you if it was their underwriting department or the VA who denied the loan.  If it wasn't the VA, you can still try another mortgage lender.

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We were told upfront that an exception to the 2 year commission was no problem and had the underwriters review our situation prior to searching for a home. The last contact with USAA was 3 days ago when the loan officer stated she was positive it would be declined, and we would hear from her within 48hrs on the official word. 3 days later we still haven't heard anything. The lack of empathy and sense of urgency is very apparent since we have begun talking to alternative lenders. Everyone else seems very ambitious and enthusiatic to earn our business, while being very clear they are optimistic but not guaranteeing anything. The denial from USAA would not be as difficult if they were to show any sort of urgency toward helping us. Thier approach was very "no means no" and they seemed to just broom us away. You would hope a veteran oriented business such as USAA would do everything in there power to make sure veterans get to take advantage of the benefits we earned. For all I know, they may have gave it thier all to get me approved, but this was not communicated to us and based on the experience we have had so far I wouldn't be surprised if our case is already forgotten.
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Dear Mike,

I have escalated your situation and a member service specialist should be reaching out shortly. I apologize for the angst this situation has caused.