I received an e-mail today from a prospective buyer from Minnesota who was coming out to Arizona to purchase a second home in the North Scottsdale area next month. Her e-mail sadly explained that due to an unforeseen economic event, they couldn’t qualify for a mortgage and would have to delay any consideration of a purchase. This was confirmed by their lender as well.

The buyer is the niece of a wonderful client of mine and she and I had been communicating for several months via e-mail about their upcoming visit here. Jon and I initially set them up on a local real estate search using our automated MLS system which sends them property updates twice per day according to the parameters of the type of home they’re looking for. They were really getting excited about buying – very much looking forward to getting this second home in North Scottsdale as they have much family here and LOVE Arizona. It’s been my experience that ALL Minnesotans love Arizona!

This situation is a very good reason why professional Realtors make it a mandatory practice to make sure a buyer is qualified to buy before looking at homes. In the “old days” (as in the 80’s and 90’s) we just took it for granted that someone could qualify to get a loan, and they most always did – except in the heyday of 17% -18% mortgages.

Lending requirements have changed a lot, especially with the Dodd-Frank Act in 2009 and signed into law in 2010. Some have changed for the better, but for many, not so much. (Side note: Chris Dodd and Barney Frank are no longer in office, having retired from their positions last year. Hmm, as we now feel the full farce, uh, force and effect of this legislation, I’m not surprised)

Now this doesn’t mean that we don’t show homes to prospective buyers who are considering buying and want to get a “feel” for the lay of the land, or summer temps, or various neighborhoods, etc. This is a part of what we do. We will however have a pretty good idea of where the buyer is at in terms of their financial ability to buy so there are no dashed expectations.

We met with our Minnesota clients yesterday and they remain as enthusiastic as ever to get a piece of the Arizona real estate pie. We sat down with a lender who has access to portfolio loans that don’t have the same stiff waiting period as regular conventional loans, however they also cost more so the client will need to weigh the cost vs. benefits. We also discussed some other alternative measures to move them sooner rather than later. We’ll see.

So if you or someone you know wants to check out buying a home in the Valley, please give them our contact info. We’ll be happy to provide an excellent buying experience for them…and that makes us and you look good!