Allow me the opportunity to reminisce a bit about the good old days. Remember when a listing meant certain success? Remember having to explain multiple offers to buyers? I was given instruction from one listing broker that the seller would only look at offers that had no financing contingency, in addition to the fact that he would also only look at offers once…just once, so come with your highest and best offer. How about all cash, fifteen percent over asking and all inspections waived? Of the seventeen offers presented that day, ours was the third lowest!
Sure, not everyone in our industry had similar experiences, but you have to admit, no matter where you were in residential real estate, it truly was the best of times. But things changed pretty quickly, didn’t they? Homes in my area,
I remember it like it was yesterday (queue the dreamy music and
Then came the news on Countrywide Mortgage. The nation’s largest and most stable mortgage lender in the industry was suddenly on the verge of collapse, and all from bad loans and debt they had acquired over the years. Reeling from this news, other lenders began to shore up their own accounts and virtually all of the entry level loan programs began to disappear.
One lender from BofA called me several weeks later and told me they still had a zero down program, but with full documentation only. The following week, she called again to inform me that the program was no longer available, but their rates on a 5% adjustable were very competitive. In fact, she said, they were the only lender now offering the 5% package.
Today, I sit and try and push my buyers through the lending process. I’m pretty well connected with the banks and lending institutions out there…but the loans I’m finding today are 20% to 30% down with full documentation. The government continues to fuel the banks with money from the economic recovery package in hopes that the banks, in turn, will more readily lend that money to the consumers that need it.
I haven’t seen it yet, but Christmas is right around the corner!