Home for the Brave/Portfolio Insurance Program

The Home for the Brave Portfolio Insurance program combines mortgage funding from Massachusetts community banks and credit unions with MI Plus™, a unique mortgage insurance product from MassHousing.

Community banks will offer competitive rates on long-term financing for up to 97% LTV of the purchase price of a new home or 97% LTV of the current fair market value of a property for limited cash-out refinances. Eligible veterans will receive up to $1,500 in closing cost assistance funds from MassHousing.

In addition to traditional mortgage insurance coverage provided to lenders, MassHousing's MI Plus™ gives borrowing veterans mortgage payment protection. MI Plus™ covers a borrower's monthly principal and interest payment (up to $2,000/month) for up to six months in the event of unemployment. Under the Home for the Brave Program, payment benefits will be extended for the same amount and term for veterans who are recalled to active duty or who serve as reservists and are called to active duty.

View the MI Plus™ Premium Rates.

Qualifying Criteria

Normal underwriting standards for portfolio loans will apply:

  • Borrowers must meet income limits
  • No maximum loan amount or sales price
  • Maximum total debt ratio: 45%
Veteran Eligibility

Eligible borrowers are

  • US Armed Service veterans, as defined by Massachusetts General Laws. Evidence of their service and discharge will be a completed DOD Form DD214 (Report of Separation from Active Duty). Form authenticity will be verified in writing by a Veteran's Agent in the city or town where the veteran lives.
  • Active-Duty Military. Because the employment on which their qualification is based is their military service, active-duty military do not qualify for mortgage payment protection if called to serve overseas since neither employment nor salary would change.
  • Spouses of soldiers, sailors or marines killed while on active duty. A letter from the local veteran's agent verifying widowed veteran status is required.
MassHousing Processing

Loans are processed in the same way as all portfolio insurance applications, and are entered into eMassHousing.com. Lenders will identify the loans simply by choosing "Home for the Brave" on the product dropdown selection option.

Closing Costs

Veterans securing a mortgage under this program may be eligible for up to $1,500 in closing cost assistance, to be applied toward legal fees, title insurance, and other third-party paid closing costs. Before closing, lender will be required to submit a completed DOD DD214 form, along with the Good Faith Estimate (GFE). After closing, lender is required to send the HUD-1 and wiring instructions to the MIF for remittance of the grant to the originating lender.

VA Property Improvement Grant

Lenders may refer veterans to their local veteran's agent to check eligibility for up to $50,000 in grant funding to help finance the retrofitting of a property to accommodate a veteran's service-related disabilities. Veterans should be instructed to apply for "The Specially Adapted Housing Grant" or "The Special Housing Adaptations Grant" depending on their disability. Information on this program can be found on the Veterans Administration Website.

Additional information may also be accessed through the New England regional VA Loan Center:

Manchester (Regional Loan Center)
Beth Thompson
VA Regional Loan Center (262)
Norris Cotton Federal Building
275 Chestnut Street
Manchester, NH 03101
Email: bethany.thompson@va.gov
Office: 603.222.5861
RightFax: 215.991.5499
MassHousing Lender Marketing Support

MassHousing provides participating lenders with marketing materials including a co-branding ready brochure and lobby posters. For more information on these materials, or on the Home for the Brave program in general, Contact your Business Development Representative.

 Home for the Brave Documents
Document  Form #L-101 - MassHousing Income and Mortgage Loan Limits (for lo...
Document  MI Only Underwriting Grid