New Ruling Is Clearing The Way For Michigan Veterans To Buy A Home

“This is about continuing to instill the sense of pride in our veterans, their families and that sense of pride in the community,” said Congressman Jack Bergman.

A new ruling is clearing the way for veterans who want to buy homes in Michigan.

The joint effort is giving veterans access to a tool they earned serving our country and one they have been denied for years.

Congressman Bergman, the Home Builders Association of Michigan and Chemical Bank announced a change in wording.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs interpreted single family homes in some developments as condos.

This led to a delayed process, taking months for veterans to be approved and potentially missing out on a home they were in the process of buying.

“Michigan was the only state that was being subject to this rule because of our choice of words so we basically, through the committee staff and our office, put a positive pressure on the VA to say this is what this means for Michigan and they responded,” said Congressman Bergman.

He said he worked hard, to make sure veterans can purchase a home easier.

And if you aren’t a veteran, you might not realize the struggle this has been for years.

“Well really it’s about veterans and really an injustice that our veterans in Michigan have earned, a benefit that they’ve been denied for the last several years,” said Bob Filka, CEO of the Home Builders Association of Michigan.

Michigan has one of the highest percentages of veterans than any other state.

But it’s also one of the most difficult states for veterans to purchase a home.

“Our veterans right now under the old rules or until now, really couldn’t compete because if you’re a seller and you’ve got four offers, one of them is conventional that you know will close within 30 days, another ones a VA loan that may or may not occur in three or four or five months, you’re going to go with the bidder of the conventional loan,” said Filka.

A problem now more than ever because of the sellers’ market.

The new ruling though, brings hope for veterans.

“As a veteran myself who owns a site condo, I kind of know the pain involved in trying to do it,” said Jeff Porter, veteran and mortgage loan officer for Chemical Bank. “So giving veterans the opportunity to be on an even playing field, giving them the opportunity to take advantage of housing to not be over charged or not get what they want after their service, I’m just very passionate about it.”

Steve Chowen, who served 20 years in the army, knows the struggle all too well.

“It took four months for the VA to finally approve, with constant calling and writing to the VA, we almost lost the home but we’re very happy that we finally did get that through but we didn’t want other veterans to have to go through that same process as we did,” said Chowen, “So getting them the opportunity to have homeownership here in Michigan, is a big deal.”