There are plenty of ways to getting funding for real estate now days without applying with banks. Some investors seek private money from individuals to purchase real estate. Individuals like family members, friends, co-workers etc anyone that has money basically. Since our current financial opportunities don't offer people a large return on their money, if you presented those same people with a detailed plan on how they could make money and offered 6%+ annually, a lot of people would jump on it.
I have purchased many houses this way for the last 6 years and will continue to do so. I'm a real estate broker and real estate investor with rental property.
I hope this helps!