Shutdown delays real estate closings
The federal government shutdown has made it difficult for some Realtors to close deals on certain properties, especially in rural areas.
It's been more than two weeks since the federal government shutdown, causing delays for Realtors across the country, whose clients are seeking federal loans.
Bette McTamney, president of the Lemoyne-based Pennsylvania Association of Realtors, said the longer the federal government remains shut down, the more difficult it will be to get certain paperwork and funding processed.
“Right now, we're dealing with it, but if the shutdown goes on much longer, things will get worse,” McTamney said. “Hopefully, by the end of the week, the federal government will make a decision and get back to normal.”
During the government shutdown, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) employees, which process loans for some rural real estate purchases, were furloughed, without pay. It caused the agency's loan processing to come to a near standstill, McTamney said.
The shutdown keeps the USDA from accepting new loans, and is slowing the process to disburse payments for loans approved prior to the shutdown, McTamney said. Without final approvals from the USDA, anyone attempting to purchase a house with a loan from the organization cannot close their deal, she added.
“If a loan was already committed and the money was promised prior to the shutdown, most of those properties are closing and aren't becoming a major issue,” McTamney said.
Other agencies handling mortgages and loans, such as the Federal Housing Administration, are functioning, but could be delayed by different government entities being furloughed during the shutdown, McTamney said.
Typically, loan agencies need transcripts from the Internal Revenue Service and Social Security to process a mortgage, while some commercial loans need final approval from the Small Business Administration. The agencies have been shut down, McTamney said.
“You don't even realize some of the areas that are government run, and now closed down, and things are getting tough,” she said. “But the longer they remain shut down, the more of an effect it will have on Realtors.”
Parks Denardo Jr., a Realtor with Denardo Realty in Ford City, said the USDA shutdown could cause the most delays in rural areas, such as Armstrong County.
“It's going to take some time, and buyers and sellers have to know if they're going to be wiling to wait for federal loans to go through,” Denardo said. “It can really become frustrating for everyone, including the Realtor, who is trying to help.
“But when a Realtor has nothing to report to their buyer and seller, all parties tend to get antsy.”
Although there are other ways to attain funding to purchase a property, such as private bank loans, Denardo said it is best to meet with a Realtor and a mortgage or loan officer to discuss their options.
Once the shutdown concludes, Denardo said he expects most agencies to become backlogged, which could delay the closing process further.
“So many approvals are probably just sitting there, waiting to be looked at,” he said. “The typical USDA transaction takes about 45 days, and now you could add another 14 days, or perhaps even longer, depending on how long it takes the government to get back into full swing.
“It's harder to keep a transaction together when it runs past 60 days, especially today, where everything is based on instant gratification.”
Brad Pedersen is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-543-1303 ext. 1337 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Lenape students earn berth in national SkillsUSA competition
- Kittanning Municipal Authority seeks agreement to clarify its role
- Police boost efforts to aid child victims in Armstrong County
- Leader Times staffers recognized for journalism excellence by Press Club
- Kittanning business celebrates renovations in its 43rd year
- Ford City planting seeds for first farmers market
- Fifth generation last in line for 150-year-old farm in Wayne
- DEP reduces fines levied against Ford City
- Ford City Council calls in help to deal with $580K grant default
- Police investigating attack on boy near Kittanning Rails to Trails
- Grant spending to improve homes extended another year in Armstrong