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Government shutdown slows down borderland housing market


POSTED: Thursday, October 10, 2013 - 5:20pm

UPDATED: Friday, November 1, 2013 - 12:18pm

Strides have been made in Washington, but lawmakers still haven't come to a deal to end the shutdown. That deadlock could mean a great deal of hurt of the Borderland's housing market.

Your dream home. You've been saving up for it. You've been planning accordingly. Except for one thing.

"It's basically been an annoyance but if it continues it's going to be a serious problem,” Sam Trimble, a Real Estate Agent with Century 21 The Edge told us.

The government shutdown is slowing down the home buying process, "what would typically be a day or two wait, is turning into a potentially much longer."

Trimble said the biggest problem facing potential hombe buyers – financing. "For example, the IRS has to verify that their records, their tax records, are the exact same tax records that have been provided to the mortgage lender,” Trimble explained "those departments haven't been completely shut down but they've definitely been streamlined."

Streamlined, or in other words, working in a much smaller capacity. So lenders may not be able to get the information they need in a timely manner.

"Delaying closings and messing up the entire process." If you're a furloughed federal employee looking into buying a home soon, the government shutdown could affect your credit. "For example, can't pay their cell phone bill on time or can't pay their credit card minimum on time, all of a sudden, their credit is just going to go down."

The shutdown has lasted ten days, so the short-term effects are more headaches than real aches.

"The biggest thing is for this to hopefully not last much longer than it has so far." However, it goes any longer, we may see some real damage done to the housing market.

Not only in El Paso, but nationwide.

Because of the shutdown, many groups are being flexible. For instance, lenders are working around the delays with the IRS, and asking for paystubs and last year's income.

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