Credit Tightens in the Midlands


October 3, 2008

By Noelle Phillips – The State

Mark Lambright, owner of Make It New in Columbia, could use a small business loan to help his furniture refinishing business make it through hard times.

But he declared bankruptcy in the mid-1990s and can’t find a bank willing to give him a line of credit to buy fabrics and paints. “There’s not a lot of room for the average person,” Lambright said.

With the U.S. House of Representatives expected to vote today on a $810 billion rescue plan for the nation’s financial system, Lambright and others — auto dealers, real estate developers and retailers — are hurting as the credit crisis spreads.

“If you have less than stellar credit, you’re not going to have access as much as you did in the past,” said Steven Mann, a finance professor at USC’s Moore School of Business.

Auto dealers, real estate developers and retailers are being squeezed. When customers can’t get loans, sales drop. And the economic grief spreads as business owners trim expenses, including their work force.

People with good credit ratings still can get loans although they will pay higher rates and will be asked for money as a down payment, said Lloyd Hendricks, president of the S.C. Bankers Association.

“We’ve got tight credit, but we’re not drying up,” he said.


Due to the credit crunch and bail out, it is imperative that all appraisers consider the availability of financing to the end user of commercial and residential properties. This will typically be tract developments, subdivisions of any kind, condominiums (commercial or residential) or any product that will be sold to end users.

The last 30-60 days have resulted in some dramatic changes in the credit markets. Greater equity requirements and more stringent lending criteria may result in extended absorption periods. What was appraised a few months ago may have a completely different value today.

Integra Realty Resources and IRR-Residential are committed to addressing this issue in every appraisal report and consulting assignment that we complete.
Mike Dodds

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