If you are a veteran of the armed forces and are in need of money for everyday expenses such as housing and education, your military service can help you secure a grant or loan. There are several loans and grants offered to veterans that are not available to the general public.
Financial assistance for education is available to veterans and their dependents, such as spouses and children, in the form of grants and loans. These benefits are provided to living veterans and their families, as well as the surviving dependents of deceased veterans. Eligibility also extends to the dependents of those individuals who have been missing in action (MIA) for more than 90 days or are listed as prisoners of war (POW). Educational assistance comes in the form of monthly payments for up to 45 months and you can apply these payments to all educational expenses (including tuition, books and living expenses) while enrolled in school. Spousal assistance applies for 10 years after the declaration of discharge, disability or death of the service person and children of veterans are eligible between the ages of 18 and 26. In order to prove eligibility for educational assistance, you must show a discharge certificate, death certificate or official document listing the veteran's POW or MIA status, as well as a marriage or birth certificate.
Not only are veterans and their dependents eligible for educational grants and loans, but current military personnel and dependents can take advantage of certain scholarships as well. These include the Admiral Mike Boorda Scholarship Program from Navy/Marine personnel, the Agron Seal Scholarship for Navy Seals and the Air Space Education Foundation Spouse Scholarship for the spouses of those on active duty in the Air Force.
If you are looking to buy a new house or repair your current one, some government policies help veterans and surviving spouses get home loans or money for home improvements. These loans are given more liberally than standard loans and veterans can apply these loans for building or buying a new home, improving a home, instituting energy-saving projects or refinancing a home. In order to qualify for loan assistance, veterans must have been on active duty after September 16, 1940 and served for 90 days or more. If service was during peacetime, veterans must have served 181 days on active duty. Release from military service must have come in any form other than dishonorable discharge. If eligible, veterans can obtain a Certificate of Eligibility from the VA office and present it to private lenders. The Certificate of Eligibility guarantees the lender against loss in case of failure to repay.
Alexis Lawrence is a freelance writer, filmmaker and photographer with extensive experience in digital video, book publishing and graphic design. An avid traveler, Lawrence has visited at least 10 cities on each inhabitable continent. She has attended several universities and holds a Bachelor of Science in English.