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January 19, 2017

CEI Teams up with Local Organizations Helping Veterans Access VA Loans

January 19, 2017 — The Veterans Home Buying Collaboration is hosting a free seminar on February 11, 2017 to help veterans understand VA Loans. The event will be held from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm in Room 133 of USM’s Wishcamper Center at 34 Bedford Street, Portland, ME 04101. Online registration is available at

Lenders across the county are able to provide service members, veterans, and eligible surviving spouses with loans guaranteed by the US Department of Veterans Affairs. VA loans have the reputation of being difficult to qualify for and understand. According a Veterans United study, only 13% of the country’s 25 million veterans have used their VA loan benefit, and 33% are not even aware that the benefit exists. In reality, VA loans are not more complicated than regular mortgages.

Chris Kotch, outreach specialist at the Portland Vet Center, says, “The VA home loan guaranty is one of the underutilized benefits our veterans have…if they go in well informed with the most current information, they’ll find it is a lot easier than they think and will save thousands compared to traditional mortgages.” In many cases, they are the best mortgage product for veterans who want to buy a home because they have no down payment requirement, no annual mortgage insurance fee, and lower interest rates than many mainstream mortgages.

About the Veterans Home Buyer Collaborative

The Veterans Home Buying Collaborative is a group of local non-profit, lending, and realty organizations including Avesta, CEI, and Pine Tree Legal, dedicated to explaining the loan process so that veterans feel empowered to make the home buying choice that is best for them. Its goal is to educate veterans about VA guaranteed loans and the process of obtaining one, without pressuring them to buy.

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