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Farm your niche market and cover all the happenings in your neighborhood
This summer, I have had the opportunity to assist a young
couple scour the north and east metro for a small acreage property. We’ve searched
across western Anoka, southern Chisago and
Counties, for something
that will meet there small acreage requirements. Our search discovered the
perfect country farmhouse on 40 acres and well within their budget too! My preapproved
clients were excited when they wrote up their offer. Everything changed a day
later when their loan officer called to inquire. “Are there crops growing on
that land? ANY crops at all?” Well, the answer was yes. Suddenly the dream homestead had become a commercial property
requiring agricultural financing.
No big deal, right? Wrong
The residential financing they were approved for limits property acreage
to a maximum of 20 crop-free, acres. Yes, the land must be totally free of any planted crop when you use residential financing (even their loan officer was a bit surprised by
this more stringent restriction). Of course the restriction is sometimes overlooked if the
land is wetland and/or is densely wooded and therefore deemed unusable for
farming. The whole situation was a bit of a surprise to my clients. They had
never asked the questions as to whether there was a restriction on their preapproval
for the size of the property. Of course this is partially because we just never expected to find such a large
piece of land in their price range.
In order for my clients to purchase the property the fell in love with,
they required agricultural financing. This is a whole different ballgame using
a specialty lender. The mortgage will require a 15-20% down payment and it is
only available at an interest rate significantly higher than what was quoted by
their residential lender…Usually 2-3% higher.This can be a deal breaker if the original financing plan was 3% down FHA or a low down payment conventional loan with private mortgage insurance.
Why the difference? There are laws to protect farmers from foreclosure
before the harvest. Current law seems to affect anything over 20 acres. It
seems that underwriters have become stricter since the housing downfall. My understanding of the situation is this: If land has been rented to another party for farming, it would
be very difficult for the bank sell the foreclosed land quickly. If there are
crops involved, the crop would belong to the farmer not the bank.
If you are searching for a Minnesota hobby farm or small acreage
property, it is very important to ask your loan officer the “what if”
if I find the perfect home on 25 or 30 acres?
if half of a 20 acre has been rented to the neighboring farmer for a corn
about a horse ranch that has 5 acres of hay planted?
Understanding how many acres are allowed using the financing
you are preapproved is essential when shopping for a Minnesota hobby farm. Asking questions prior to the home search for can
save you time and heartache as you search for your dream home.
Additional Articles on Minnesota Acreage that might be of
If you are buying, selling or relocating to Minnesota and need help from a professional REALTOR®, give me, Theresa "Teri" Eckholm, a call or visit my website for a FREE Relocation Packet or FREE Homebuyers Success Packet. I specialize in acreage and lakeshore properties in the north and east Twin Cities metro area including Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and all communities in the Forest Lake School District! Serving Anoka, Chisago, Ramsey and Washington Counties in Minnesota.
Theresa "Teri" Eckholm/REMAX Specialists assists Minnesotans to find their way home with helpful tips and quality service. Dedication to customer service has made Teri the REALTOR® of choice for families in Blaine, Forest Lake, Ham Lake, Lino Lakes and Wyoming areas. Licensed in MN.
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.