Getting a Mortgage Tougher for Buyers

Difficulty in landing a mortgage is keeping many buyers out of the market.At the peak of the housing boom, about 20 percent of the mortgage market was subprime, and nearly 20 percent was “Alt-A loans” or “A-minus” loans, typically offered those with good credit but with high debt-to-loan ratios or little or no proof of income.Both categories are now nearly extinct. That means about 40 percent of the residential mortgage market has all but disappeared, according to David Olson of Wholesale Access Mortgage Research and Consulting.

“The underwriting has really tightened up,” Olson says, “Before, if you could fog a mirror, you got a loan. Now, that’s not the case.”

Nationwide, practitioners say they are encountering more potential buyers who can’t get financing.

“Buyers come in with confidence, and once they have talked with a lending practitioner, it’s like they’ve been hit over the head with a ton of bricks,” says Dean Moss, an agent at Keller Williams Fox and Associates Realty in Chicago.

A study conducted using data from a Reno, Nev., multiple listing service, found that about 30 percent of sales haven’t closed after 90 days. Practitioner Guy Johnson, who analyzed the data, suggests that buyers stay on top of their loans, checking in with their lender frequently to make sure the loan for which they’ve been approved is still the same.

“A loan commitment letter,” he adds, “isn’t really as solid as it once was.”

Source: USA Today, Anna Bahney (08/05/2008.

 

Author: niaknowles

From Native New Yorker (Brooklyn) to Atlanta Realtor, with a love for architecture and design. Atlanta based Real Estate Consultant working to restore and sell Intown Homes; REO,South West (Westside,West End, Westview Communities 30310,30311,30314,30318 zip codes)

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