When my buyers Kelley and Satomi first contacted me in early November the panic in their voices was palpable. A couple of weeks before they had unexpectedly been given a 90 day no-cause eviction notice from the home they had been renting in the Alberta area. Once the initial shock of receiving that notice wore off, they decided to see if they could make the move from being renters at the mercy of landlords to homeowners, despite the fact that they hadn’t planned on buying a home anytime soon and didn’t have a lot in savings to be able to make that happen. In the couple of weeks since their no-cause eviction notice, they were able to get themselves a pre-approval letter from Umpqua Bank using the Oregon Bond rate advantage loan at 3.65% in combination with a second loan (called a MAP- mortgage assistance program) through the Portland Housing Center. I met them on a Saturday, and along with their 3 year old daughter we looked at a few homes on Sunday including a nice skinny house in Mill Park. By Sunday evening they decided to write an offer on the Mill Park skinny which was at the very tippy top of what they were approved for, but given their family’s needs, the 3 bedroom and 2 1/2 bath the home was listed at a price almost too good to be true for them. On Monday, we wrote up a full priced offer, and by Tuesday, the sellers accepted. Phew.
Once the sellers accepted their offer on Tuesday, I immediately sent over their sales agreement to lender extraordinaire Jennifer Leon at Umpqua, and she contacted Oregon bond to lock in their 3.65% rate. First thing Wednesday morning we received an email from Jennifer letting us know that the rate on the Oregon Bond had gone up 1/2 point over night, but fear not because Kelley and Satomi were locked in at that 3.65% rate. Given that rates have risen nearly a point over the last year, the days of the below 4% rates are most likely over and won’t go back under that 4% in our lifetime. So not only did my buyers slip in just under the wire, they were the very last buyers to be able to use that rate with Oregon bond. There were so many ways that this whole situation could have transpired so very differently. Had their offer been accepted only a day later, the rise in the interest rate would have put their home out of reach. Had they not found a great home in a great area that was priced incredibly well, they would have been scrambling to find a decent home under $300k. Had the inspection gone south, they would have been thrown back into the mercy of the home price winds. But thankfully, everything went according to the best laid plan. And when the appraisal came back nearly than 8% higher than the purchase price (I can’t recall ever seeing that happen before) it was yet another sign that the stars had aligned for Kelley and Satomi.
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