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Living Rural Podcast

Living Rural is a podcast dedicated to topics related to buying, building, and financing homes in rural areas, including home financing and mortgages for rural living.

Welcome to Living Rural

Welcome to Living Rural - a podcast on home financing and mortgages for rural living. Our podcast explores the topics related to buying, building, and financing homes in rural areas, as well as accessing your home's equity and investing in bare land and other investment properties.

Our aim is to cover the ins and outs of the home buying process, starting from prequalification and preapprovals to loan estimates and closing disclosures. Additionally, we'll dive into financing home improvements, shouses, barndominiums, and second homes.

With our expert guests and in-depth analysis, we'll provide valuable insights to help you make informed decisions and choose the right financing partner. Whether you're a homebuyer, real estate professional, or simply interested in what it takes to move to a rural area, this podcast is for you.

Search for "Living Rural" on your favorite podcast app and subscribe to be alerted on new episodes!

Single story brick home set in the countryside along a line of trees

Living Rural Podcast Episodes

Rebuilding with Rural 1st: Customer Recounts Recovery after Home Fire

In this episode of Living Rural, Michelle Sandin talks to Shawn Robinson about his family's construction process following a 2022 house fire. Patience is important, so is a good contractor and quick, easy financing.

Rural Homes and More for Young and Beginning Producers

Starting an agricultural business is capital intensive. Then there is the cost of buying or building a home for your family. On this episode of Living Rural, Michelle Sandin is joined by Evan Babcock, a young and beginning relationship officer for Farm Credit Services of America, to discuss financing and programs that help young and beginning producers meet all their needs.

Unveiling Key Financial Metrics for Rural Home Financing

Tune in for this insightful discussion with credit analyst Jen Goodman while we explore the financial metrics that are crucial for analyzing repayment in rural home financing. Gain valuable insights into the four key financial statements that shape loan approvals and discover why understanding a farmer's financial position is essential for a suitable mortgage.

More Than Just Loans: How Rural 1st Supports Your Rural Homebuilding Journey

This episode of Living Rural is all about construction financing in rural areas. Michelle Sandin is joined by Jenni Mora Velazquez, the director of operations at Rural 1st, to discuss the construction loan process, the Built online tool, and how Rural 1st can help you build your dream home in the country.

Behind the Deeds: Unraveling the Complexity of Title Work

As the Operations Manager at Midwest Title, Living Rural special guest David Welte sheds light on the significance of title work in real estate transactions. From the historical perspective of title research to the complexities of ensuring clear ownership, this episode offers insights so you can gain an understanding of the title insurance process and the differences between lender and owner policies and the benefits to real estate buyers.

Beyond the Barn: Acreage Adventures in Real Estate

For this episode listen about dynamic world of equestrian real estate with guest speaker from Berkshire Hathaway Group, Pam Rasmussen. From picturesque properties resembling Kentucky farms to innovative showcases using drone videos and live feeds from horse, Pam unveils the charm of equestrian real estate. Learn about the changing landscape of acreages, the allure of 'barndominiums,' and how innovative approaches can reshape the way rural properties are presented. A must-listen for horse enthusiasts and those seeking a distinctive home in the countryside.

Understanding the Potential of Rural Multi-Use Land with Whitetail Properties

In this episode of Living Rural, Michelle Sandin is joined by Luke Wallace, a seasoned land specialist at Whitetail Properties. They explore rural multi-use land financing and the dynamic real estate market in southeast Nebraska. Learn about land loan options and discover the impact of partnerships between Rural 1st and Whitetail Properties in making rural living dreams come true.

Your Mortgage Journey: Where Customer Support Matters Most

On this episode, we're talking to Kristy Anderson, the director of Rural 1st Customer Care team. Kristy and her team provide world-class service, from the start of the loan journey through the final payoff. We'll discuss the wide range of services the Customer Care team offers and the expectations you should have with ANY lender. Whether you're a current Rural 1st customer or you're thinking about buying a rural home, this episode is for you.

Building a Home that Fits Your Lifestyle: Tips from a Drafter

In this episode of Living Rural, we talk to Tony Wright, owner of Elevation Drafting Company, about drafting plans for your new home. Tony shares his insights on the importance of having a well-designed plan, and how to work with a drafter to create a plan that meets your needs and budget. We also discuss the latest trends in home design, and how to make your home more energy efficient.

Buying Land for Your Dream Home

Buying land for your dream home is a big decision, but it doesn't have to be overwhelming. In this episode, we're joined by Emily Swinford, a real estate agent with Better Homes and Gardens, to discuss everything you need to know about buying land for home construction. Emily covers a wide range of topics, including what to look for, different types of land loans, zoning and permitting process, utilities and more!

Rural Home Construction, Tips from a Local Custom Builder

In this episode of Living Rural, we discuss the ins and outs of building a custom home. We talk to Andrew and Poppy Grove of Grove Custom Homes, who share their insights on the challenges and rewards of the process, as well as the importance of managing expectations and communication. We also discuss some tips for choosing the right custom home builder.

Navigating Rural Construction Financing: What You Need to Know

If you're planning to build your dream home in a rural area, this episode is a must listen. Our host takes us through the ins and outs of their unique construction loan product, designed to meet the specific needs of rural customers. From understanding the application process and disbursement schedules, to obtaining credit approval and ordering appraisals, this episode covers the major steps involved in financing and constructing your rural dream home.

Demystifying Home Loan Appraisals: A Conversation with a Rural Appraiser

Want to learn the ins and outs of property appraisals? Tune in to this enlightening episode of Living Rural, where an appraiser from Farm Credit Services of America, shares her expertise. Discover the essential elements of an appraisal report, including property features, comparables, and market value. Gain a deeper understanding of how factors such as location, acreage and utilities influence the appraisal process for rural properties.

Exploring the Rise of Shouses and Barndominiums in Rural Living

Join us as we talk about the growing popularity of shouse and barndominiums in rural areas. Discover the key differences between these unique structures and learn from our guest, Kirsten from Critel Buildings, about their company's specialization, including their use of post frame construction.

Rural Mortgage Application Process

The mortgage world is always changing. And it can be difficult to find a lender who understands agriculture and its unique income stream. We provide the latest information on applying for a mortgage, including for the self-employed. Learn about the differences between pre-qualification, pre-approval and hard approval. We also discuss down payments.

How Much Can You Afford?

In this episode of Living Rural, we discuss ways to understand how much you can afford, including your goals, your budget, and the different income sources and the types of statements that help determine that.

Preparing to Buy a Rural Home

Start here with your first steps to learn how to prepare to buy a home, or buying land for your dream home. Where do you start? What are things to keep in mind? How much can I afford?

Expertise with Farm Credit Services of America

In this episode of Living Rural, we take a deeper dive into who is Farm Credit Services of America and how we brought in specialized expertise to serve consumer lending market.

Who’s Farm Credit and Rural 1st?

In this episode of Living Rural, join us as we talk through who Farm Credit is, what it means to be a “Cooperative”, and the highlights of Rural 1st consumer lending products.

Get Started

Contact us if you have questions or need more information.