Shutdown Slims Housing Options For Fort Hood Families

Paralyzed federal programs are making it harder for soldiers moving to or from Fort Hood to buy and sell houses.

Shutdown functions for IRS and Social Security offices are blocking mortgage companies from getting tax and social security verification they need to close new deals.

"We're going to be fine for probably two to three weeks or a month. The people that will be in a time crunch are those that are in a hotel and apply for a loan today, and want to close in two weeks," said Samantha Jackson, Senior Loan Officer with First Community Mortgage.

Realtor Nellie Elizondo with Coldwell Banker United Realtors gets several calls from concerned clients each day.

Some are arriving military families that are living out of hotels and waiting to buy homes, and others are soldiers with homes to sell who already moved to their next duty station. 

"So a lot of the homes are vacant, and they're paying the mortgage here, and they're paying rent where they're at, and the more it's on the market, the more of a financial hardship it is on them," Nellie said.

That's what Staff Sergeant Alan Yost is afraid of.

He has orders to leave Fort Hood, but has yet to sell his Killeen home, so he's doing what he can to spruce it up

"I added hard wood floor to the living room there to kind of make it appealing," said Alan.

A "For Sale" sign has been in his yard for about five months, and with orders to transfer to Arizona in just about one month, time is ticking down.

Alan says, "It's stressful, because one, I've got to sell it for less than it's worth, just because of the market, and then two, it's just so hard around here, because everybody is selling their house, and then not everybody has a job to buy houses."

Reporter: Sophia Stamas 

Photographer: Chris Buford


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