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"Stuck at Stupid"

A friend of mine recently sent me the following quote by Lou S. Barnes, an owner of a Colorado mortgage bank named Boulder West Financial Services.

It gave me a good chuckle, so for those of you that haven't already come across his remarks elsewhere, I thought I would share what Mr. Barnes had to say about the current home lending environment.

As quoted in the New York Times' article, Tight Mortgage Rules Exclude Even Good Risks, Barnes said, “The credit pendulum is stuck at 'stupid'. I am turning down loans every day that my grandfather in his Ponca City, Okla., savings and loan in 1935 would have been happy to make. And he was tough.”

I have no idea who this gentleman is or how his remarks made it from Boulder to an article in the New York Times, but I must say his musings helped brighten up my rather dull and uneventful afternoon.

I'm a firm believer that our country won't be able to pull out of this economic funk until the housing market leads the way, and I just don't see that happening unless things get a little less 'stupid' in the lending markets. If you've tried speaking with a loan coordinator at any major bank recently, you probably know what I mean.

Most of them have no clue what they're doing and can barely even handle communicating what they want to their underwriters, let alone what you what. So, if your financial situation is more complex than the average Joe, don't even waste your time. Find an experienced mortgage broker who actually understands mortgages, and you'll improve your chances of securing financing (a little).

Do we need to return to the days of no-doc loans for basically anyone with a pulse? Of course not, but individuals with solid credit scores, large down payments, and good cash flow should be able to secure loans - self-employed or not.

Until that day comes, potential home buyers will keep renting and socking away their cash while the economy remains in this sad state of confusion.


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Joshua Heckathorn's picture

Joshua Heckathorn was President of Creditnet, is a credit expert and has been featured on CNNMoney, FOX Business, Yahoo Finance, The Street, and many other national publications during the past ten years.  He received a Bachelor of Science in Management (Finance) from Brigham Young University's Marriott School of Business and earned his MBA from Seattle University.

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