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USDA Loans: End Of An Era For Home Buyers?

USDA Rural DevelopmentIf you’ve been thinking of buying a home in the Birmingham/Shelby Co. area using the popular USDA loan program which allows you to buy with no down payment, you may be fast running out of luck.

USDA says the program is projected to run out of money by the end of April, and no new funding is currently anticipated.

In Shelby County, USDA loans have been responsible for many people buying homes in areas like Calera and Montevallo, as well as across many other parts of Alabama.

Because USDA loans are so attractive to many buyers—mortgage insurance isn’t required, either—they have often meant the difference between whether a Buyer is able to purchase property.

Carmell Cantrell, First Federal Mortgage

Carmell Cantrell is a Loan Officer with First Federal Mortgage in Birmingham, and has been following what may be the demise of the program she and other Lenders have worked with extensively over the years.

USDA loans could be revived if Congress acts, but whether that will happen remains unknown. If the program does, in fact, end, it will stand as a major point in real estate sales history, signaling the end of the so-called easy credit era.

Click the player below to listen to our interview with Carmell now…

…or click here if you’d like to download and listen on your personal listening device.

So … what to do if you’ve been thinking of buying a home using USDA loan program?

Experts have two words to suggest: Start saving.


Having Fun, Helping Others in Shelby County

Wow, can people involved in real estate be a fun bunch! The best part is when you can do something fun and help people in need at the same time, which is what happened the morning of November 19th in Pelham.

The Oak Mountain Realty Network—a group of Shelby county area real estate agents and associates in related fields—held its annual Christmas Auction at The Margarita Grill on Highway 119.

Lots of folks helped raise money for SafeHouse and Family Connection, Inc. Special thanks to RE/MAX Advantage agent Robert Scott, who was a great auctioneer. This was a team effort with many different folks helping out, including agents, attorneys, lenders, home inspectors, insurance providers and other associates.

What makes this even better, according to Carmell Cantrell, a Loan Officer with First Federal Mortgage, is that—for every dollar raised during the auction—the state of Alabama will kick in a matching amount.

Some scenes likely won’t be forgotten soon—who would have ever imagined seeing John Holliman, an attorney with Holliman & Shockley in Pelham, showing off men’s holiday underwear?

Check out the fun below — click on any of the pictures for a larger version, too: