What is a Certificate of Eligibility(COE)?
The COE is a formal document that certifies that the borrower has a VA entitlement and is eligible to participate in the program.
How do i obtain a Certificate of Eligibility(COE)?
Normally, the COE is obtained by your lender directly, but if you would like obtain it on your own:
- complete the VA Form 26-1880, Request for a Certificate of Eligibility and either
- submit it online through eBenefits or
- submit it to the Atlanta Eligibility Center, along with proof of military service to
What does the entitlement on my COE represent?
An entitlement is the amount of money the Veterans Administration will guarantee on a loan.
If I am qualified to purchase a home up to $879,750, why is the entitlement on my COE only $36,000?
It’s completely normal for a Certificate of Eligibility to say the Entitlement is $36,000. The key is the bonus entitlement, and how it ties back to the county. The general rule is a Veteran can obtain a VA home loan up to 4 times the amount of the available basic and/or bonus entitlement.
The “basic” entitlement available to each eligible Veteran is $36,000 on loans of $144,000 or less. Every eligible Veteran also receives “bonus” entitlement that is considered in excess of the $36,000 basic entitlement. Bonus entitlement kicks in only for loans over $144,000. Bonus entitlement is calculated by taking the annual Freddie Mac conforming loan limits for counties($879,750 for San Diego), multiplying them by 25% and then subtracting the basic entitlement of $36,000.
Example: ($879,750 x 25% = $219,937) - $36,000 = $183,937 bonus entitlement.
Generally, an entitlement of $36,000 on the COE translates to being able to purchase a home valued up to the county Fannie Mae Loan Limit without having to make a down payment.