Government shutdown hurts home buying industry

The partial government shutdown is keeping some federal offices in the Rio Grande Valley closed.

Home realtors in Hidalgo County are worrying the shutdown will affect potential new home buyers.

Buying a home takes time, but that wait could be longer because of the shutdown.

We know the IRS offices are shutdown, and there is no verification of tax returns which is one of our verification processes," Oziel Salinas, home mortgage banker said.

So far Oziel has experienced some delays with both the IRS office and the social security office.

But to keep the home buying process moving for current clients, investors are helping him out.

"They are making exceptions, they are allowing us to close loans by using their original tax returns but it is very likely they are going to stop that, he said.

Investors are only making these exemptions for a week.

Realtor Fabiana Walker is preparing for the affects of a long-term shutdown.

"More homes would be available in the market, you know since buyers will be holding to proceed and enter in contracts," she said.

Right now, home buyers most affected by the shutdown are federal employees whose paychecks are on hold.

"I see them holding from buying and there TMs a large percentage of them here in the Valley, Walker said.

Although the affects are minimal now, Walker is telling buyers and sellers what they should be doing throughout the shutdown.

"Keep checking on any updates, checking with their lenders specifically because the lenders is the one that knows all the insides in everything that is happening right now," she said.