64.126: Native American Veteran Direct Loan Program

Popular Name: VA Native American Veterans Housing Loan Program

Objectives: To provide direct loans to certain Native American veterans for the purchase or construction of homes on trust lands.



Applicant Eligibility: Native American veterans recognized by a Federally Recognized Tribal Government as a Native American and who: (a) Served on active duty on or after September 16, 1940, and was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable. If service was any time during WW II, the Korean Conflict, the Vietnam-era, or the Persian Gulf War, then the Native American Veteran must have served on active duty for 90 days or more; peacetime service only must have served a minimum of 181 days continuous active duty. If separated from enlisted service which began after September 7, 1980, or service as an officer which began after October 16, 1981, a veteran must also have served at least 24 months of continuous active duty or the full period for which called or ordered to active duty. Veterans of such recent service may qualify with less service time if they have a compensable service-connected disability or were discharged after at least 181 days, under the authority of 10 U.S.C 1171 or 1173. (b) Any Native American Veteran in the above classes with less service but discharged with a service-connected disability. (c) If acknowledged as a Native American by a Federally Recognized Tribal Government, unremarried surviving spouses of otherwise eligible Native American veterans who died in service or whose deaths were attributable to service-connected disabilities and spouses of Native American members of the Armed Forces serving on active duty, who are listed as missing in action, or as prisoners of war and who have been so listed 90 days or more. (d) Members of the Selected Reserve recognized by a Federally Recognized Tribal Government as Native Americans and who are not otherwise eligible for home loan benefits and who have completed a total of 6 years in the Selected Reserves followed by an honorable discharge, placement on the retired list, or continued service.

Beneficiary Eligibility: Native Americans who are veterans, service personnel, certain unremarried surviving spouses of veterans.

Credentials/Documentation: Evidence of the veteran's entitlement for loan benefits and qualifications for the loan purpose, documentation on the loan transaction and characteristics of the leasehold interest in the property proposed to secure the loan. Evidence also that the Federally Recognized Tribal Government which manages the trust land on which the home is or will be located recognizes the veteran as a Native American.


Preapplication Coordination: None. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure: Eligible veterans should obtain a Certificate of Eligibility from the nearest VA office and obtain an acknowledgment of Native American status from his or her tribal council or Native American organizational body. This evidence should be presented to the nearest VA office with an application for a loan.

Award Procedure: The VA Regional Office or Center will determine that application requirements are met, determine that the veteran is eligible for the loan and that the purposes for the loan meet the requirements of law and disburse the loan proceeds.

Deadlines: This is a 5-year pilot program and will end October 1, 1997. Contact Headquarters Office listed below for deadline information.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time: Within 10 days after VA's receipt of a loan application.

Appeals: Denial of eligibility is appealable through Board of Veterans' Appeals. In the event of a denial, claimants are advised of appeal rights and procedures at the time of notification.

Renewals: None.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals: Not applicable.

Examples of Funded Projects: Not applicable.

Range & Average of Financial Assistance: Loans will be limited to $80,000, except where the Secretary determines that, because of significantly higher than average housing costs in certain geographic areas, higher loans may be made.


64.126 PROGRAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS: In fiscal year 1995, 44 loans were made under this program. In fiscal year 1996, the volume is expected to grow to 268 loans, totaling $20.4 million. In fiscal year 1997, an additional increase in volume, to 400 loans, is expected, with a corresponding increase in obligations, totaling $31.3 million.



Type of Assistance: Direct Loans.

Obligations: (Loans): FY 95 $5,971,000; FY 96 est $20,350,000; and FY 97 est $31,316,000.

Budget Account Number: 36-4130-0-3-704.

Authorization: Public Law 102-547, 38 U.S.C. 3761-3764.

Regulations, Guidelines, & Literature: 38 CFR 36.4501 and 36.4527. VA Pamphlet 26-93-1, VA Direct Home Loan for Native American Veterans Living on Trust Lands.


Regional or Local Office: Loan applications are processed completely by the Veterans Benefits Administration field offices for their respective geographic area jurisdiction. Initial contact should by made with the appropriate office listed in Appendix IV of the Catalog under Veterans Benefits Administration.

Headquarters Office: Department of Veterans Affairs, Washington, DC 20420. Phone: (202) 273-7390.


Formula & Matching Requirements: Loans under this program may be for up to $80,000. The original principal amount of any loan made under this program shall not exceed an amount which bears the same ratio to $80,000 as the amount of the guaranty which the veteran would be entitled to under 38 U.S.C. 3710 at the time the loan is made bears to $36,000. Where the Secretary determines that housing costs are significantly higher than average housing costs nationwide, the Secretary may make loans which exceed $80,000. The original principal amount of any such loan shall not exceed an amount which bears the same ratio to the maximum loan amount established by the Secretary as the amount of the guaranty to which the veteran would be entitled under 38 U.S.C. 3710 at the time the loan is made bears to $36,000.

Length & Time Phasing of Assistance: Not applicable.

Uses & Use Restrictions: VA may make home loans to eligible applicants for any of the following purposes: (a) Buy or build a home; (b) simultaneously purchase and improve a home; (c) repair, alter or improve a home; or (d) purchase a manufactured home to be permanently affixed to a lot that is already held in lease hold by the applicant. Restrictions on direct loans under this program are that: (a) the borrower must have a leasehold interest and occupy, as his or her home, the housing unit securing the loan; (b) the nature and condition of the unit must be suitable for dwelling; (c) the terms of repayment must bear a proper relationship to the applicant's present and anticipated income and expenses; (d) the applicant must be a satisfactory credit risk; (e) the applicant must be a Native American; and (f) the property on which the home is located must be trust property.


Reports: None.

Audits: None.

Records: Until the loan is paid in full the tribal organization must maintain adequate records on the terms of the leaseholds on the properties on which the homes are located.

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