VA Loan Appraisal & Inspection Requirements: What To Know?

VA Loan Appraisal & Inspection Requirements: What To Know?

The terms “VA house inspection” and “VA appraisal” are sometimes used synonymously. However, there are important distinctions between the two. A VA appraisal is always necessary and resembles a regular home appraisal in several aspects. But, home inspections offer significantly greater protection for purchasers than VA valuations.

Continue reading to find out more about how VA inspections and VA assessments are different.

Is A Home Inspection Mandatory When Applying For A VA Loan?

VA loans from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) do not need a home inspection. While they are optional, the lender frequently strongly advises them. VA loans are comparable to conventional Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and most other forms of mortgages. Yet, to evaluate the home’s worth for lending reasons and ensure it satisfies the VA’s minimum property standards, appraisals are necessary for VA loans (MPRs).

Some individuals may mistake the VA appraisal for an inspection since it involves determining if the home complies with specific rules established to prevent veterans from acquiring unsafe residences.

How Are VA Loan Appraisals Different From Home Inspections?

The primary function of a VA appraisal is to determine the home’s fair market value. Lenders utilize this figure to ensure you are paying the house’s market value (and not more). Also, they use it to ensure adequate collateral in the house in case you default on your loan.

However, the VA assessment also performs other duties.

The VA assessor must confirm that the house is secure, healthy, and clean. In other words, the home is ready for habitation and won’t likely injure the veteran financially or physically. The appraiser must ensure that the house satisfies the VA’s minimal property requirements and is in good shape to prevent it from becoming a money hole and increasing your debt.

A VA appraisal is still subject to significant restrictions. Therefore it shouldn’t be used as a substitute for a thorough home inspection. An inspector digs deep into every nook and cranny of the house to identify anything that is now wrong or that might go wrong in the coming years, whereas an appraisal only looks at the “surface” issues.

VA Loan Appraisals & Conventional Loan Appraisals

It’s a common myth that VA loan appraisals are considered stricter than conventional ones. However, this is not true. In fact, they have several similarities with conventional loan appraisals.

Here’s a bit on how VA and conventional loan appraisals are similar to one another and where they differ.

The goal of both VA and conventional appraisals is to determine the house’s fair market value. When the appraiser visits the property, measurements are made, the property is inspected, and photos are taken.

The appraiser for both types of appraisals also evaluates three adjacent, comparable homes recently sold within the past six months. The appraiser determines fair market value in this manner.

Both VA and conventional loan appraisers search for severe property flaws and substantial value-adding improvements. For instance, a significant hole in the roof would lower the house’s value, but a larger kitchen with high-end appliances would improve the subject property.

Generally, the lender gets the appraisal from a third party, and the buyer pays for it.


The minimal property standards for VA appraisals differ from those for regular assessments (MPRs). Although the minimum property criteria may seem onerous to purchasers concerned that they would prevent their loan from being approved, rejections are relatively few. If they do occur, they should often be a source of relief for the buyer as they have avoided buying a property that was overpriced or that would be a money pit because of significant structural problems with the house.

Although sellers frequently worry about MPRs, if they’ve taken care of the property, most appraisers pass the property or can quickly address the flaws the appraiser discovers so the property passes.

Summing It Up

Home inspections are strongly advised but are not a requirement for VA loans. Although the VA assessment and minimal property standards are incredibly detailed, a complete inspection still beats them all. You should make a compelling offer on your new house regardless of the sort of financing you receive.

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