July 17th, 2009 8:34 AM by Joan Rusco
There are few times in any career when the opportunity arises to be of service beyond the call of duty. This may be one of those rare moments in history for many of us. As we are all painfully aware the mortgage industry has been on the short end of the public relations stick for several years. We have been bombarded daily with news reports of predatory lending of record levels of foreclosures. Our industry was blamed for the numerous defaults that continue to rack the housing market. We could argue the validity of the blame but the sad fact is there are thousands of homeowners who acquired mortgage loans but shouldn’t have. The real cause lies beyond the scope of this short treatise. Many Americans who measured net worth by the equity in their homes now feel financially strapped, worrying about their ability to send kids to college or a secure retirement. So where’s the opportunity that I speak of?
In recent days I have received several calls at our office of VALoansMN from prospective home buyers. Okay, you say, “so what?” These calls came from active duty personnel. The calls were from soldiers in Iraq who long to be stateside and establishing a civilian life, a life without the threat to life they endure daily. I am on the phone with a soldier in Iraq who is seeking my help! The humility that this instills is beyond my ability to describe. No matter where you are, you too may be receiving calls from our military men and women, maybe from the war zone itself. A VA Loan (or any loan that enables their ability to return home) is something these soldiers have earned. In my opinion, they have earned the right to be homeowners, they have earned the right to have us step forward with exemplary service to see that their hopes and dreams are realized. I pass on my recent experience with those currently in service but this reminds me there are many (over 400,000 in Minnesota) who have served in other conflicts ranging from World War II, Korea and Viet Nam who have equally sacrificed for us.
Let us in the mortgage industry recognize this opportunity to help, this opportunity to be of service. Many of us have yellow ribbon stickers on our vehicles or bumper stickers that say “support our troops”. Now is the time to do much more. It is my hope that we will all go beyond the call of our daily duty to see that these soldiers (past and present) are served as they have served us.
Joan Rusco is owner/manager of VALoansMN