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## Considering Buying a Home with a VA Loan in Austin, TX

Hi guys,

I am currently looking at buying my first house with a VA loan in the Austin, TX area. As it is now I can afford some pretty nice 4 bedrooms close-ish to the city for around 380-410k. I have received some advice that it would be better to buy now even though interest rates are high and then refinance when they drop to lock in a better price. I was wondering if anyone who has more experience in this can attest to this, and if interest rates go down how much prices may go up. Do you think I should buy now or wait a little bit until interest rates go back down? If it helps at all, I don’t need to pay property tax because I have 100% disability and my credit score is pretty good. What do you all think? I could definitely use some advice.

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11 Comments

  • Gymjess305

    Refinance with the VA streamline loan is super easy and generally, no appraisal, credit information or underwriting is required. I did one with PennyMac in early 2022 and it was done quick and dropped our rate 2%.

  • __DeezNuts__

    It’s easier to refinance than a conventional loan. With a VA loan you can do a Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan (IRRRL)

    > A VA IRRRL is also referred to as a VA Streamline, and the terms are often used interchangeably. Lenders use the term “streamline” to imply that the IRRRL process is simpler and faster than other

    [VA Streamline Refinance](https://www.rocketmortgage.com/learn/va-streamline-refinance)

  • LoanSlinger

    VA streamline refinances are super easy, and CHEAP if you have a disability rating (and subsequently you’re exempt from the VA Funding Fee).

    In my opinion, the Fed will eventually have to bring interest rates down. There isn’t a direct relationship between the “Fed rate” and fixed mortgage rates, but there is a strong correlation. The Fed is trying to bring down inflation by keeping interest rates high. Eventually, this will happen. It’s even possible they will increase them again this year to accomplish this goal if we have another couple strong CPI reports and/or jobs reports, but I think that is unlikely.

    So anyway, I believe mortgage rates will come down at some point in the future. I just don’t know when (my guess is winter of 2024/spring of 2025 before we see meaningful drops).

    Mortgage applications overall are down right now compared to previous years. This leads to less competition in the market, which leads to opportunities to get under contract for less than when there are tons of buyers competing for the same properties, which drives prices up.

    My opinion is that, if you can afford it and you WANT to buy a home, it’s not currently a bad time to do that. If rates come down in the future, you have an easy refinance to bring your rate down. When those rates come down, there will likely be a surge of buyers who flood the market with pent up demand, and that will drive up prices. So while those people who waited for rates to come down are struggling to get under contract, you can refinance.

    I highly recommend you work with a quality lender with a strong reputation. Sellers can be turned off by VA loans (unfortunately, which sucks), and they are also turned off by lenders who have reputations for being slow, having poor communication, and having less experienced staff. This includes lenders like Navy Federal, USAA, Veterans United, etc. When you have a contract on the line, with deadlines, and your entire offer might depend on which lender pre-approved you, go with the reputable choice. Later on when you refinance and there are no deadlines, pick the sweatshop if you want; the lender with a poor reputation for speed and communication won’t matter as much when you don’t have a contract hanging in the balance.

  • yellowtop7512

    I have refinance twice it’s a very easy process. The last lender I used was Veterans United. They are super easy to work with. They deal with VA loans and know all the in and outs of the program. Hope this helps you.

  • vicinadp

    Let me guess someone who is in realestate/broker/mortgage/realtor told you to buy now and refinance? Well interest rates are a massive variable in cost. I bought a house at 4% and my monthly was $2200, and same how at 7% was well over $3000 a month so theres a huge variable but you also dont know when, how much or if the rates will go down. I was told by the guy who was trying to get me a mortgage that he anticipated rates to go down in the next six months(this was summer 2022) and offered me a worse rate than navy fed. I chose to trust my gut and felt he was trying to get me to sign the deal, I got a 1% lower interest rate with Navy Fed and we all saw the opposite happen to rates than what he told me was going to happen. I dont think theres ever a right time to buy because low interest rates = higher prices due to cheaper cost to borrow, high interest rates = lower prices but again higher payment due to interest rates.

  • Tactical-turtle91

    What about closing costs associated with a VA IRRL? I get these offers all the time in the mail but they look like scams

  • Vanilla-prison

    EXTREMELY easy (depending on lender of course). 6 months after I purchased, my lender actually reached out to me and said rates had dropped if I was interested in an IRRRL. Filled out the piperwork, looped the fees into the new loan, and that was it. I didn’t pay a penny out of pocket, dropped a whole percent, and skipped paying mortgage for 2 months while the new closing date came.

    Now I pay the same amount as before, but the extra ~$200 now goes right to the principle

  • cobraspideyguy

    Have refinanced twice…no issues

  • reason-92

    The average 30 year fixed rate mortgage over the last 50 years is 7.73%. We’ve gotten used to abnormally lower rates that we may not see again in our lifetime. Don’t bet your future on them coming down. It’s ok to stretch a little, just don’t count on refinancing. Wages rise over time due to inflation, and as you gain experience you’ll move up and make more money. Over time, your mortgage payment will become a smaller percentage of your income.

  • -Chip-the-Rip-

    You can also buy down points to reduce your monthly payments if that interests you.

  • AdMost3735

    Lender here and when I say easy I mean easy. Usually only need to show a paystub and a utility bill in your name to prove occupancy.