A Short Guide to VA Approved Condos in Miami

Founder, Condoblackbook.com & Owner/Broker, HB Roswell Realty
A Short Guide to VA Approved Condos in Miami
Founder, Condoblackbook.com & Owner/Broker, HB Roswell Realty

Aug 16, 2019 August 16, 2019

It only makes sense that those who have served the country get some perks and benefits to make life easier. A VA home loan is one of those benefits. It is the best kind of mortgage available, since it requires no down payment (up to a certain limit), no mortgage insurance, has low interest rates, low closing costs and is easier to qualify for than any other loan out there. Veterans can use their VA home loan to finance a condo, townhome, or single-family home. However, financing a condo comes with a little twist.

Since you can only use your VA home loan to finance a VA approved condo, here are a couple of things you should know: 

We’ve included a complete list of VA approved condos in Miami at the end of this article to give you a jumpstart on your home owning process. If you want to see a list of VA approved condos in Miami, jump down here :)

Cité - Edgewater, Miami FL

Cité - Edgewater, Miami FL

What is a VA Approved Condo?

A condo development submitted to and approved by the Department of Veteran Affairs features VA approved condos. This approval is given to entire condo projects, so veterans can choose to finance any condo unit from within the complex.

As of the writing of this article, you will only be able to buy into a condo using a VA loan if the condo has been VA approved.

How Can You Get a Condo VA Approved? 

Previously, spot approvals for condos used to be allowed, wherein even a single condo from a project could be VA approved. However, this was recently cancelled by the HUD (although proposals have been submitted by the Federal Housing Administration to bring the system back). So, for now, approvals are only given to entire complexes. And the condo association will need to take an active role in submitting all the documents required for VA condo approval. 

See a list of VA approved condos in Miami at the bottom of this blog.

The Loft I - Downtown, Miami FL

Basic VA Condo Approval Guidelines

A complex must meet the following criteria, among others, to have its condos approved by the VA:

  • It should have at least 35% owner occupied units
  • There should not be more than 10% units that are 60 days delinquent on their HOA
  • The complex/building must have 20% of its condo budget in reserves for maintenance
  • All units must be covered by flood, hazard, liability plus any other insurance dictated by the State Law and acceptable by the HUD
  • There should be three years of acceptable financial documents

Types of VA Approved Condos

Accepted without Conditions This means that the condo complex has been reviewed by the VA and is eligible for VA financing.

HUD Accepted Before December 2009, condo projects approved by the HUD/FHA did not require a separate VA approval. However, post this change, it was declared that a condo development with such a prior approval would be "grandfathered" in and accepted as a VA approved condo project. In other words, an already HUD-approved project before December 2009 would not need to go through the VA approval process again. However, it is still advisable to verify the status of such a complex.

Unaccepted This means that units in the condo complex are not eligible for VA financing. There could be three reasons for such a status:

  • The condo community has never undergone the VA approval process
  • It does not have a pre-2009 HUD accepted status
  • It was submitted for review, but was denied by the VA

Quantum on the Bay - Edgewater, Miami FL

Quantum on the Bay - Edgewater, Miami FL

What is the VA Loan Limit in Miami, Florida and South Florida?

The VA home loan program, much like other zero down programs, has a set loan limit, beyond which you will need to put some money down. The VA loan limit in Miami-Dade for 2019 is $484,350, with a maximum guarantee of $1,000,000. This means that if you are planning to purchase a higher-priced condo in Miami, you will be required to make a down payment on top of your existing VA entitlement.

Can I Get a VA Loan for a Condo Not on The Approved List?

If the condo you like is not currently VA approved, your lender will have to get it passed before you can finance it with a VA home mortgage. For this, your lender will need to get the requisite documentation from the condo association (which it is not liable to share) and submit it to the VA. Also, do remember that this is a long process and could take a few months. So, we highly recommend looking at already approved condo projects.

The Charter Club - Edgewater, Miami FL

The Charter Club - Edgewater, Miami FL

Why Aren’t There More VA Approved Condos in Miami and South Florida (and in General)?

There are two main reasons why there aren’t more VA approved condos in South Florida. Many condo buildings vote down fully funding the reserves fund (essentially a savings account for future major repairs/replacements) in order to keep their monthly association fees lower. This goes against the reserves requirements required for VA condo approval. Second, many condo associations do not take the initiative to go through the VA approval process.

What are my alternatives to a VA home loan?

At times, it could be beneficial for a military borrower to look at options besides a VA home loan. This could be because they didn’t qualify, want to buy a second home or rental property, want to buy an expensive property, can afford putting 10-20% down, are looking to undertake renovations and need a flexible program, etc. In such cases, your options include:

  • FHA mortgages
  • USDA mortgages
  • Conventional mortgages

This article gives you detailed insight into the above options and how they compare to a VA home loan.

Yacht Club at Portofino - South Beach, Miami FL

Yacht Club at Portofino - South Beach, Miami FL

List of VA Approved Condos in Miami

We’ve put together this handy checklist of Miami’s VA approved condos to help you on your journey to becoming a condo owner:

CONDO NAMEADDRESSNEIGHBORHOODCityZip CodeYear builtPrice RangesArea (sq ft)
1060 Brickell1050 Brickell Ave & 1060 Brickell AvenueBrickellMiami331312013250,000-​999,500551-2,238
107 Mendoza107 Mendoza AveCoral GablesCoral Gables331342008N/AN/A
50 Biscayne50 Biscayne BlvdDowntown MiamiMiami331322008229,000-​1,000,000436-1,789
Brickell on the River South41 SE 5th StreetBrickellMiami331312008265,000-​520,000981-1,510
Cite2000 N Bayshore Dr and 2001 Biscayne BlvdEdgewaterMiami331372007235,000-​705,000707-1,453
Grove Garden Residences3225 Franklin AveCoconut GroveCoconut Grove331332006N/AN/A
Infinity at Brickell60 SW 13th StreetBrickellMiami331302008230,000-​950,000673-2,734
Loft Downtown I234 NE 3rd StreetDowntown MiamiMiami331322006199,000-​299,900625-1,185
Loft Downtown II133 NE 2nd AveDowntown MiamiMiami331322008190,000-​350,000620-1,153
Madison Downtown800 & 850 N Miami AveDowntown MiamiMiami331361998189,900-​320,000575-927
Millennium18671 Collins AvenueSunny Isles BeachMiami331602000699,000-​1,999,0001,680-2,230
Mirador North1200 West AveSouth BeachMiami Beach331391968170,000-​679,000552-1,071
Nautica5970 Indian Creek DriveMid-BeachMiami331402004332,000-​649,000950-1,715
Nevis Condo2650 37 AveCoral GablesMiami331332007335,000-​335,0001057
NIRVANA680, 700, 750, 777 64 StreetUpper East SideMiami331381972179,900-​350,000723-1,089
Parc Central East3300 NE 192 StAventuraAventura331801990220,000-​385,000910-1,181
Parc Central South3300 NE 191 St, AventuraAventuraAventura331801990196,400-​435,0001,065-1,302
Ponce Tower1805 Ponce De Leon BlvdCoral GablesMiami331342013270,000-​1,299,000708-2,201
Quantum on the Bay1900 N Bayshore DrEdgewaterMiami331322008229,000-​950,000594-1,970
Sail on Brickell170 SE 14th StreetBrickellMiami331312006215,000-​420,000630-1,090
The Charter Club600 Northeast 36th StreetEdgewaterMiami331371973254,800-​580,000757-1,850
The Yacht Club at Aventura19501 - 19999 E Country Club DriveAventuraAventura331801994224,900-​499,000730-1,500
Toscano7350 and 7355 SW 89th St,DadelandMiami331562007240,000-​450,000759-1,428
Yacht Club at Portofino90 Alton RoadSouth BeachMiami Beach331391999458,000-​2,200,000740-1,480

Recent Posts

Top 5 Reasons to Move to Greater Downtown Miami instead of Miami Beach
Opinions and Advice Top 5 Reasons to Move to Greater Downtown Miami instead of Miami Beach
For decades, Miami Beach has been the ultimate choice of residence for anyone thinking of living in Miami. The charm of living in a top vacation spot, enjoying the beach lifestyle and being close to the hottest nightlife is undeniable. However, living in Downtown Miami and its neighboring districts such as Brickell, Brickell Key, Edgewater, and the Upper East Side has its own perks too. Here are the top 5 reasons that make living in Greater Downtown a better choice than Miami Beach: Close to Work/Business For anyone looking to save on precious commuter time, the idea of living close to work/business can be a real game-changer. Downtown Miami and Brickell combined hold about 90% (that’s our own rough estimate) of all the business activities that take place in Miami. This is where you will find most of your government offices, consulates, private offices, banks, international business offices, and co-working spaces. So, living in Greater Downtown can put you within minutes of your...
Who Would Have Thought Parking Garages Could be This Awesome? 5 Amazing Miami Parking Garages
Lifestyle Who Would Have Thought Parking Garages Could be This Awesome? 5 Amazing Miami Parking Garages
While new developments are making Miami more walkable every day, the city still maintains a solid car culture. With its characteristic penchant for a laid-back, low-stress lifestyle, Miami has become a leader in pushing forward a construction agenda that provides ample and convenient new parking spaces for the city's multitude of vehicles. The local fascination with cutting edge architecture and design has pushed that agenda even further, as Miami becomes a showcase for some of the world's most unique and innovative parking garages. Below is a list of some of Miami's recent construction projects that focus on sheltering local vehicles.   Museum Garage NE First Avenue and NE 41st Street Architects, artists, and fans of bold, cutting-edge design are raving about Miami's delightfully offbeat Museum Garage, set in the heart of the bustling Design District. A concrete structure housing seven stories, the garage holds about 800 vehicles as well as retail and commercial space on the...
Miami’s New and Pre-Construction Condo Update: August 2019
Real Estate News Miami’s New and Pre-Construction Condo Update: August 2019
This August, the long-awaited Ritz-Carlton Residences in Miami Beach finally came closer to welcoming residents by getting a hold of their TCO (this is a temporary certificate of occupancy, which means they can start closings). The second tower at the Estates at Acqualina had its foundation poured. And, the Melo Group requested approval for its largest ever, twin-tower project in Edgewater. Read on for details on these condo pre-construction updates and much more below: Foundation Pour The Estates at Acqualina – Sunny Isles Beach August witnessed the foundation pour for the second tower at the Estates at Acqualina. Construction is now in full swing for the north tower at this $ 1.8 billion luxury condo project. The south tower already had its foundation laid late last year. Together, the 50-story towers feature a total of 247 units, of which the south tower houses 154 and the north tower will hold 93. The list of ultra-luxury amenities offered at this Trump Group development...
4 Gorgeous New Miami Architectural Projects
Lifestyle 4 Gorgeous New Miami Architectural Projects
Known as a city that worships design, and one in which nearly every star architect has left their indelible mark, Miami architecture boasts contributions from such world-famous names as Frank Gehry, Rem Koolhaas, Zaha Hadid, Herzog & De Meuron, Grimshaw, César Pelli, Richard Meier, Rafael Moneo, Jean Nouvel, and Bjarke Ingels, as well as revered local designers such as Arquitectonica. Spread across all areas of the city, here are four of Miami’s newest and most talked-about architectural wonders that are simply breathtaking to look at. One Thousand Museum Photo courtesy of 1000 Museum Rising at 1000 Biscayne Boulevard, directly across from Museum Park, One Thousand Museum has quickly become one of the most famous buildings in Florida. This spectacular 62-story residential tower is one of the last works designed by the late Pritzker Prize winner Zaha Hadid prior to her death, and her first residential tower design in the Western Hemisphere. Standing over 707 feet tall, One...
Scooters in Miami: They’re a Keeper
Lifestyle Scooters in Miami: They’re a Keeper
In April, the City of Miami launched an electric scooter program that allows folks like me and you to grab any rental scooter they see on the road, unlock it with their app, and for about half the cost of an Uber or Lyft, scoot around town.  In my ripe old age of 42, I like to use things only if I truly find them useful, as opposed to doing it just to do it. But, these scooters really are practical and useful, especially for around-the-neighborhood tasks (like showing properties! :)).  While I was riding, I had so many thoughts about the pros and cons of using a scooter to get around town. I hope you find them useful too! Cover photo courtesy of Bird Scooters are a Faster Way to Feel Connected to the City I am always in my car and tend to have my “blinders” on. Cars are just not a great way to connect to the city in a positive way. Walking or riding past people is when you can get a real sense of who your neighbors and city visitors are, you can envision how the newest...
Skywheel will add Miami to list of Cities Around the World with Iconic Ferris Wheels
Real Estate News Skywheel will add Miami to list of Cities Around the World with Iconic Ferris Wheels
Miami will soon be getting its very own observation ferris wheel, joining other cities around the world that enjoy similar attractions. Proposed for erection at Bayside Marketplace in Miami’s buzzing Downtown, Skywheel will be a 176-foot-tall attraction providing panoramic views of Miami, and will spin slowly enough so that passengers can take photos.  Each air-conditioned ride will last about 15 minutes, and the attraction will be open daily from 10 am to midnight, with extended hours until 1 am on special occasions such as New Year’s Eve. Miami Skywheel will be the latest addition to the growing list of iconic ferris wheels in cities around the world. For die-hard ferris wheel enthusiasts or those that like to rate the coolest cities in the world by ferris wheel :), here are some others for you to check out: Ferris Wheels From Around The World High Roller, located in Las Vegas, with a height of 550 feet, is currently the tallest ferris wheel in the world....