Forever Home in Minnesota
Sara and Jamin Dick have called lots of places home over the years. From New York City to Hong Kong, the couple and their six kids aren’t strangers to moving around. But as their kids got older, the Dicks knew there was only one place they wanted to put down roots: Minnesota.
Having both grown up in the state, the two had their eyes on the western suburbs as the perfect place to find a forever home. “We loved the experiences we had moving around the world, but I think we always had in our mind we would buy a place out here,” Jamin said.
Sara and Jamin had dreamed of life on a large property in the country. With new flexibility to work from home, the couple started looking to move out of New Jersey and back to Minnesota in 2021.
A PROPERTY WITH BOTH OPPORTUNITIES AND CHALLENGES
After browsing properties online, the Dicks found a place in Minnetrista that caught their eye. The house needed updating, but the 13 acres of land was perfect. It offered the couple space to enjoy the best of country life, from gardening to keeping animals.
But there was something else unique about the property, too. It was also the site of a horse stable, where the owner operated a boarding business. The Dicks looked into buying the property soon after discovering it. As part of their offer, the two agreed to continue the stable business.
At first, the couple went to their usual bank to facilitate the loan. But after disclosing that they intended to run the stable business out of the property, the bank balked. Suddenly, the Dicks weren’t sure if their dream property was within reach.
COMPEER OFFERS EXPERTISE
Sara and Jamin’s luck changed when they found out about Compeer Financial, which specializes in rural lending. Once the couple contacted Compeer, they met their loan officer, Jodi Keehr, who proved to be the perfect person for the job.
Not only would Compeer lend on an income-producing property like the one the Dicks were trying to buy, but it was something Keehr had ample experience in. “That is the type of property that I specialize in financing at Compeer,” Keehr said. “It's kind of a niche product that a conventional secondary market loan may not be able to finance.”
CLOSING JUST IN TIME
Even with Compeer in their corner, the Dicks still needed to move quickly to close on the property. The two were already living out of a hotel and working to sell their New Jersey home when a competing offer was put on the property.
With this added sense of urgency, Keehr got her team at Compeer together to work through the underwriting and appraisal process as swiftly as possible. For Keehr, that sometimes meant working on her days off. But that was all made worth it when she attended the closing at the property alongside the Dicks in July of 2021.
“I’m partially responsible for making sure these people get into their dream home when they're moving across the country,” Keehr said. “And if that means I have to take phone calls or do emails on my day off or do things on the weekend, I will do it.”
A PLACE TO GROW
Today, thanks to Compeer, the Dicks can enjoy the property to its full extent. They’re getting the most out of life in the country, from gardening and raising animals to something they didn’t expect: running the horse stable business. While it’s something the couple didn’t plan on when they first decided to move, it’s proven to be a fun and fulfilling venture.
And the Dicks aren’t done with their work on the property yet. They’re partnering with Compeer again as they make improvements to the house and work on the stable business. In the process, Compeer helped the two secure home equity and equipment loans.
As the couple see their vision for the property come together, it’s already become a place for their kids and extended family to come and gather. Family is even reflected in the property’s name, “Four Sisters Farm,” which pays homage to Sara and her three sisters, as well as the Dicks’ four daughters. “My dream for my life has always been to open our home to everyone that needs a place to stay or wants to come and visit,” Sara said. “And that's already become true.”
Considering buying a home of your dreams in rural America? Check out our other articles and resources.