war veteran

Are You a Veteran of the US Military? Here are 5 Programs to Take Advantage of Today!

If you are a veteran of the United States Armed Forces, you have access to a wealth of benefits that can help you all throughout your life. Most of these benefits are provided under the GI Bill, which was enacted in 1944 to provide a list of rights for those who had served their countries in the military. Below, you can learn more about some of these benefits, how to access them, and what you can expect when you apply. 

#1 – College Degree Programs

United States veterans have access to benefits that will help them pay for higher education at four-year universities and community colleges, and they will even help pay for some advanced degree programs, too. In fact, the GI Bill can even pay you for more than one degree in many cases. If you’ve thought about getting a degree in your current field or a new one, the college degree programs for veterans are excellent options. There are even benefits available for your dependents, too! 

#2 – Licensing & Certification Reimbursement

Many professions in today’s economy require some sort of licensing or certification. The costs associated with these requirements can often be quite high, which prevents some veterans from obtaining the certifications and licensing they need to get a better job with higher pay. Fortunately, the GI Bill provides reimbursement for licensing and certification costs across a broad range of industries. The benefit allows for up to $2000 per test in reimbursement, and you can even be reimbursed a second time if you do not pass the test on your first attempt. 

#3 – Home Loans Secured by the VA

The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides a benefit known as a VA home loan. Veterans who are interested in homeownership often cannot afford the down payment or simply do not qualify for a traditional mortgage due to credit restrictions. The VA home loan program is designed to circumvent these challenges and allow veterans the opportunity to buy a home with $0 down and very few credit requirements. 

#4 – Readjustment Counseling

Returning to everyday life after a tour of duty might seem like a breath of fresh air, but for some veterans, the adjustment period is very difficult. Most US veterans qualify for free readjustment counseling, which is available in individual, group, and family settings. The counseling is designed to help veterans make a smooth and successful transition back into everyday civilian life. This counseling may include treatment for PTSD or other military-related problems that can make daily life difficult. 

#5 – Pension Programs

Many veterans are unaware that they can qualify for a pension without being disabled as long as they are 65 or older and they meet certain requirements.  In order to qualify, you must have been a wartime veteran who was discharged from service under any condition other than dishonorable. If you are 65 or older, you could qualify for pension benefits if you have a limited income and a limited net worth or assets. As of 2022, the asset limit to receive a pension from the VA is $138,489. 

If you are interested in claiming any of these benefits, you can learn more about them and even apply for them through the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) website. There are handy tools available to help you determine whether you qualify, and you can also find a list of documents you will need to provide. Whether you want to go back to school or buy your first home, these programs can help you reach your goals.