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Travel money expected early September

The latest word from the State is that we probably won’t started receiving our Veterans Trust Fund Grant money until first of Sept. Watch for announcement when I have received it.

Remember: Travel money is not an entitlement or guarantee. I am experiencing numerous complaints and some downright angry veterans because I don’t have travel money yet. This is not the fault of this office or the American Legion. It is in the hands of the State of Colorado, and must work its way through their systems. I can assure you I am doing everything possible to obtain our travel money as soon as possible.

Home Loan Guarantee Program

Mortgage loans guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) continue to have the lowest rate for serious delinquency and foreclosures in the industry.

“The continued high performance of VA loans is due to the dedication of VA’s loan professionals, the support of our partners in the mortgage industry and most notably, the responsibility of our veterans and their desire to maintain home ownership,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki. “VA is making good on its promise to help veterans achieve the American dream of owning a home.”

There are currently about 1.3 million active home loans that have been obtained using VA’s Home Loan Guaranty Program. The program makes home ownership more affordable for veterans, active-duty service members, and eligible surviving spouses by permitting low or no downpayment loans and by protecting lenders from loss if the borrower fails to repay the loan.

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association National Delinquency Survey, VA’s foreclosure rate for the last eight quarters and serious delinquency rate for the last five consecutive quarters have been the lowest of all measured loan types, even prime loans.

Much of the program’s strength stems from the efforts of VA employees and loan servicers nationwide, whose primary mission is to “ensure all veterans receive every possible opportunity to remain in their homes, avoid foreclosure, and protect their credit from the consequences of a foreclosure,” added Shinseki.

Depending on the situation, VA’s loan specialists can intervene on a veteran’s behalf to help pursue home-retention options such as repayment plans, forbearances and loan modifications. When home retention is not an option, sometimes VA can help arrange a sale, or a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure, both of which are better options for Veteran borrowers than foreclosure.

Since 1944, when home-loan guaranties were first offered under the original GI Bill, VA has guaranteed more than 18.8 million home loans worth $1.06 trillion.

To obtain more information about the VA Home Loan Guaranty Program, Veterans can call VA at 1-877-827-3702. Information can also be obtained at www.homeloans.va.gov.

DAV vans

The Disabled American Veterans (DAV) organization is running a VAHC van from Durango on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Call Mike Dunaway, 247-2198, and from the Farmington area on Mondays and Wednesdays, call Harriet Mulnix, (505) 793-1782.

Durango VA Clinic

The Durango VA Outpatient Clinic is located at 1970 E. 3rd Ave. Durango, CO 81301 (the old Mercy Medical Center). Phone number is 247-2214.

Further information

For information on these and other veterans’ benefits, please call or stop by the Archuleta County Veterans Service Office located at the Senior Center in the Pagosa Springs Community Center on Hot Springs Blvd. The office number is 264-4013, the fax number is 264-4014, cell number is 946-6648, and e-mail is afautheree@archuletacounty.org. The office is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Bring your DD Form 214 (Discharge) for application for VA programs, and for filing in the VSO office.