California Man Barricades Himself Inside Foreclosed Home

Carson, California has over 1,100 homes in foreclosure according to its mayor, and barricaded inside one of them was Frank Torres, an oil-refinery worker who lost his home to foreclosure after work was scarce last year. Now he’s working full-time and he wants to buy his house back — but he says the bank won’t listen. That’s why he painted a message on the roof of his former home and held the building hostage for 5 hours.

From KABC:

“That’s all I want is for someone to hear me out,” said Torres. “For someone to help us out, work with us, work on a loan, because if not, they’re just going to sell the house under the home price, way under the price, and that’s not going to help the economy out, that’s not going to help us out, that not going to help the banks out. And I just don’t see — that’s a three-way loss.”

They mayor of the town is supportive of Mr. Torres, who is apparently a normal, hardworking guy.

“This is a prime example of what cities have to do all over California, all over the nation,” said Carson Mayor Jim Dear. “They need to reach out to their population, to the constituencies, and look at creative solutions, because this gentlemen, he works, his wife works. They’re bringing in a decent income but yet, this adjustable mortgage that he was stuck with, still couldn’t make the payments.”

Meanwhile, President Obama is expected to announce a new $50 -$100 billion foreclosure program which would include subsidies to lower borrower’s interest rates (the government funds would have to be matched by the lender’s own money), says the New York Times. The subsidies are intended to function as an incentive for lenders to refinance troubled loans, but its still unclear if the program will be more effective than the current voluntary programs. The Times says that 9% of all mortgages were either delinquent or in foreclosure at the end of 2008.

Man holds foreclosed Carson house hostage [KABC]

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  1. Saboth says:

    Was it really saving so much paint/effort to write “2” instead of “to”?

    • Jack T Ripper says:

      @Saboth: At least the rest of it is spelled right. It could have said “I wnt 2 B herd” or something. His chances of being heard are significantly better than if he had written the words in “text”

    • Blueskylaw says:

      @Saboth:

      A can of spray paint only covers so much.

      • SabreDC says:

        @Blueskylaw: True, but then it would say “I want to be hear” because he would have ran out of paint on the last d. How would he have been able to predict that he would have run out of paint, thus spelling “to” as “2”?

    • Sure I could agree with you, but then we'd BOTH be wrong. says:

      @Saboth:

      LOL, I was thinking the same thing.

      The other question is… When did he write this? Barricading oneself inside a house precludes going outside, climbing on a ladder, and painting on the roof…

    • calquist says:

      @Saboth: I thought that too, but then decided that I was impressed enough with the neatness of his writing that I would let it slide.

    • ironchef says:

      @Saboth: 2 fast 2 furious to spell.

    • jackspants says:

      @Saboth:perhaps it was a spacing issue. the words “be” and “heard” have more emphasis when placed seperately. the only other options i can think of are:

      to show banks how hip he is

      or he desired two items of “be heard” which is apparently the name of an album by Barricade [www.google.com]

    • gttim says:

      @Saboth: Prince fan! He also asked that he be called “The guy formerly known as…”

    • Closed captioning provided by Homerjay says:

      @Saboth: I think I figured this out.
      Being barricaded inside your house can lead to some crazy cravings.
      He started out writing “I want 2 bacon double cheeseburgers” but then realized half way through that he couldn’t fit “bacon double cheeseburgers” on his roof so he just said “be heard.” Now, when someone listens to him he can tell them that he wants 2 bacon double cheeseburgers.

      Was that so hard to understand?? Jeez, you people always try to look for the most complicated answer.

    • Swizzler121 says:

      @Saboth: hey at least he didn’t say “I Want 2 be Herd”

  2. downwithmonstercable says:

    Why wouldn’t the bank want to take advantage of this? Is it just the fear of a repeat down the road, since he’s already in foreclosure?

    • nataku8_e30 says:

      @downwithmonstercable: This may sound paranoid, but in some cases the locals who review this information don’t have the bank’s best interests in mind. I believe there have been instances of the “banks” selling the houses to people they know off the market for way under value. I’m sure I’m not getting it entirely right, and someone else will be able to chime in and give a more accurate representation, but this is really just a continuation of the corruption with local brokers that helped to establish this situation in the first place.

      • AlteredBeast (blaming the OP one article at a time.) says:

        @nataku83: I remember reading an article (I think here) where the homeowner had enough money to buy the house from the bank, and was given a date that the home would go on sale…but it was sold before that date to someone else at a lower price.

        • JulesNoctambule says:

          @AlteredBeast: I remember the same article. That was a terrible thing.

          • Ber'Zophus says:

            @downwithmonstercable: It sets a weird precedent. It’s possible the bank may be fearing another foreclosure….perhaps justly; we don’t really have the whole story. But more likely, banks today just seem to be on the absolute other side of the spectrum from what they were a year ago. Rather than give everyone and their dog a nice fat ARM, now, no one gets anything (without the third-degree at least).

            I suppose it could be argued that’s a good thing…better safe than sorry, right? Well…uh…is it really better safe than sorry when trying to save the economy? ie, the consumerist story AlteredBeast is referring to. Just because the banks screwed up doesn’t mean no one should be trusted anymore.

        • the_wiggle says:

          @AlteredBeast: right. that settles it then. MORTGAGE industry staff along with Bank Loan staff of all levels will now be up against the wall – before the lawyers – when the revolutions comes.

        • Alessar says:

          @AlteredBeast: I’ve heard of that too.

          It’s corruption, really. I’ve also heard of companies that are liquidated and they are sold for less than the amount of *cash* they still have in their accounts.

      • Eyebrows McGee (now with double the baby!) says:

        @nataku83: I have seen similar situations. We had a local Realtor get her license pulled not that long ago for participating in a scheme sort-of like this. But it was a foreclosed house she was trying to sell under market, I think to front company owned by herself and her husband, and she didn’t provide the bank with all the bids that came in (which were higher than her front company’s) … it was all very shady.

        @downwithmonstercable: “Why wouldn’t the bank want to take advantage of this?”

        In addition to any possible shadiness, probably the bank is running numbers through a machine and obeying the machine’s dictates. They don’t know who he is, and they don’t really care. He may get lucky and get a CSR who feels like helping him, but he’ll probably just keep getting shunted around a system that HAS ways to help … but feels like using them is too much work.

    • AlteredBeast (blaming the OP one article at a time.) says:

      He says the bank loses, but really, they are just thinking short term. Sure this guy would give them more than they could sell the house for, over the course of 20 more years perhaps. This way, they get cash for selling the house cheap, and have less outstanding debts they are looking to collect.

      It’s like “a bird in the hand is worth two int he bush”.

    • mac-phisto says:

      @downwithmonstercable: i’m sure that’s the excuse, but i think it’s more a case of banks lacking the ability (or willingness) to work with people.

      i recently had to deal with the servicer that bought my mortgage regarding proof of insurance – that fiasco lasted 3 months & i had to call 4 different departments before i found someone that was able to help. i can only imagine what it would be like to go thru trying to reaffirm or modify a mortgage on a home that’s in the foreclosure process.

    • drb023 says:

      @downwithmonstercable:

      Also, if there was PMI insurance on the home, the bank gets paid, so they really don’t care what the home sells for. The proceeds from the sale for the sale of the home go to insurance company.

      I think this is an example of corporations just not giving a damn because it’s not standard operating procedure and the employees are not trained to think, just follow SOP.

      • gparlett says:

        @drb023: The bank really isn’t out any money, unless this guy declares bankruptcy. If they short sell the house the homeowner is on the hook for the difference. Not great for the homeowner, but it’s not like the bank is cutting off it’s nose to spite it’s face…

        And actually for those who didn’t follow the link and read the full story, the bank was actually amazingly proactive in this case. They actually worked with the customer extensively years before any issues arrived and got him a mortgage that he was completely happy with. Then he changed his mind about the payments he could afford and the type of mortgage he wanted and now it’s the bank’s problem.

        • snowburnt says:

          @gparlett: Actually, if the guy declares bankruptcy he won’t be off the hook for his first mortgage, that’ll be the first one that they’ll figure out a way for him to repay.

          In a short sell/short refi situation, the bank swallows the difference, which is why a lot of people do it in situations where the house has lost value and the people can’t afford to pay. The bank eats the difference but it hits the guy’s credit as bad as a foreclosure.

          Banks actually have to power to change your mortgage with the click of a mouse (so long as you and the bank are in agreement over the terms…it is after all a contract you have entered into). Most of the time, they have insurance so they will let you fall out of favor, not work with you and foreclose. The insurance pays the remainder of the loan AND the get to sell it. This is why most of the banks were foreclosing quickly at the beginning of this mess. Problem is, the insurance providers ran out of money. Remember AIG? They almost died because so many banks were trying to cash in on their PMI that they ran out of money.

          Now most banks are trying to work with people due to tremendous public pressure, but they are severely understaffed and their processes are still pretty draconian.

        • Munchie says:

          @gparlett: If I was the bank issuing the loan to this guy and he pulled somehting like this I would do everything I could to make sure he did not succeed. If he does then other people might start thinking this is a good idea, then the problem suddenly gets much larger.

      • the_wiggle says:

        @drb023: employees are also denied empowerment as SOP

  3. DTV-Compliant_GitEmSteveDave says:

    You might want to clean you backyard up if people are going to be filming from above. That said, I applaud this guy for not going overboard and surrendering to the deputies when he finally got his message heard. Some people take it too far and hurt their cause more than help it. He’ll probably get a slight slap on the wrist, so he can keep working and not be in jail. Bravo Sir!

  4. Jack T Ripper says:

    I fear his next step… He seems to be pretty desperate and creative. If this doesn’t work then what are the bets that he burns the house down? Holding the house hostage implies that if he doesn’t get what he wants then the hostage is going to die. Isn’t that why you hold hostages? I don’t know myself… I’m new to the whole housing terrorist thing…

    • Skybolt says:

      @ocdetails: If he’s actually creative, he will think of something besides burning the house down.

      This is not “housing terrorism.” If this is terrorism, then any aggressive action or propaganda is terrorism, and then the word is useless. He was not making any kind of political point, he was just trying to get the bank to act rationally.

      • RecordStoreToughGuy_RidesTheWarpOfSpaceIntoTheWombOfNight says:

        @Skybolt: I’d call it good, old-fashioned American style Civil Disobedience.

        • Traveshamockery says:

          @RecordStoreToughGuy:

          I’d call it good, old-fashioned American style Civil Disobedience.

          Breaking and entering, trespassing, destruction of property, and vandalism…not really civil disobedience.

      • Jack T Ripper says:

        @Skybolt: He is holding the house hostage. He has demands that he wants met. What is terrorism if not that? He isn’t picketing the bank. He has barricaded himself inside property that no longer belongs to him and has made irrational demands that it be sold back to him. I can empathize with his situation, but this isn’t the way to go about it. He needs to get another house and move on. What he is doing right now is making matters worse for himself. If the house is foreclosed then he is officially trespassing on bank property and may be forcibly removed.

        I can’t believe how people will justify breaking the law when they feel sorry for the perpetrator. This is why so many people tuned in to watch The Sopranos. They ignore the fact that they were extortionists and murderers just because they had families and relationship problems like the rest of us. Sure I feel sorry he lost his house, but that is what happens when you lose your job and don’t do what is necessary to pay the bills. Time to move on now.

        • superberg says:

          @ocdetails:

          Terrorism: the systematic use of terror especially as a means of coercion.

          Who exactly is he instilling fear into? He’s protesting. Which is different, unless you’re a neo-con.

        • Tiber says:

          @ocdetails: terrorism (noun): the calculated use of violence (or the threat of violence) against civilians in order to attain goals that are political or religious or ideological in nature; this is done through intimidation or coercion or instilling fear.

          Is he attempting to or threatening to harm innocent people? No.
          Is he he trying to cause political, religious, or ideological change? No.
          Is he attempting to or threatening to cause violence at all? No.

          This is pretty far from terrorism. It’s maybe breaking and entering at worst. And what irrational demand is he making? That a bank, many of which are hemorrhaging money, provide him with a commodity in exchange for money? He may be making matters worse for himself legally, but he’s gathering a lot of attention. In this case, I predict the judge with give him a slap on the wrist. The mayor might even pardon him.

          So tell me then, how exactly is he supposed to fix the problem anyway? Should he get a loan for another house? Banks aren’t even lending to people with good credit. Petition the bank in a lawful manner? He’s tried that. It’s easy to condemn people when you have the luxury of being far away from all of it.

          Just curious, are you an American? If so, are you proud to be an American? If so, you are in support of breaking the law, since America was founded by breaking British law.

          • Jack T Ripper says:

            @Tiber: I’m glad this gets broken down into a war of semantics.

            Who are you to ask my nationality? It doesn’t matter in the slightest. From my perspective you just sound like someone who is probably in the same situation as the guy in this story and that is why you support what he is doing. He made bad choices and lost his house. It happens. The fact that it is happening a lot more now doesn’t change the fact that people have been getting their houses foreclosed on them for years and years. He is acting like this is the first time it has ever happened and the bank is picking on him.

            • Trai_Dep says:

              @ocdetails: Words matter. Look at it as a learning opportunity. :)

            • Tiber says:

              @ocdetails: What semantics? The difference between mass murderers and someone who locks himself in a house he doesn’t own is a trifle?

              I didn’t realize your nationality was a closely guarded secret. I was making a point that you seem to believe that breaking the law under any circumstance is reprehensible. American colonists committed treason in fighting for independence. Therefore, supporting America as a nation and saying that there is never a good reason for breaking the law is contradictory. It was merely an example; there’s no reason to get offended.

              You seem to be making some pretty big assumptions yourself. You assume I own or owned a home (I rent). You assume I have financial difficulties (I don’t; the only debt I have is student loans). Is it that difficult to believe that I merely have sympathy for the man? As far as I know, the man never lost his home due to any bad choices. He just can’t find work, which is fairly common lately even for hard working people. You also assume he’s taking this whole thing personally. He’s simply drawing attention to his plight, because the bank can’t or won’t help, even when it’s in their best interests to do so. Nowhere does he say that he thinks this is the only one this is happening to.

              @faintandfuzzies: America was founded TO escape British law, BY breaking British law. You’re talking about the motivation, and I’m talking about the action.

          • faintandfuzzies says:

            @Tiber: America was not founded by breaking British law, it was founded to ESCAPE British law. Let’s get that straight.

          • the_wiggle says:

            @Tiber: excellent points. well said.

            terrorism(& patriotism) has been pimped about like “think of the children!” cheapening when not out right obscuring the realities of all 3.

        • brentbent: C.O.C.K.R.O.A.C.H. )for all the queer super villians out there( says:

          @ocdetails: It depends if this was just a house or if it was a home. The latter would imply a long term emotional investment: where he first lived after marriage, where his kids were born and raised, where Christmas was held for decades, etc. It’s easy to abandon a house but it is much, much harder to give up a home. If you’ve ever put down such roots you’d know how hard it is to give up something that dear, especially when you know the only reason you can’t have it is because some paper pusher won’t let you have it even though you have the money for it.

  5. Ajh says:

    I don’t understand why banks do this…wouldn’t it be more profitable for them to let him keep the home and start up payments again?

    • krispykrink says:

      @Ajh: Because some of the banks here in CA want to make a quick dollar as fast as they can. In my area people are being turned away when they try to talk to the bank and work things out, because the bank has people from out of the country lined up to buy the property straight up.

      The banks would rather get a full payment at below market from a Chinese firm than refinance or work out a plan for the people that are already living there.

      • lars2112 says:

        @krispykrink: Those Chinese also bought the securitization that their mortgage is in.

        Banks have already taken huge writedowns, if they can now sell it at the marked down price they would rather just get out vs risk the person not paying again in the future.

    • Brunette Bookworm says:

      @Ajh: Shhh, that’s logic there.

      I don’t undestand it either. Why not try to work with these people to get a payment each month they can afford, guaranteeing the bank steady income.

    • Brazell says:

      @Ajh: With most foreclosures, the people just stop paying the loans altogether, with no intention of ever paying it again… it’s an intentional foreclosure. If this guy actually plans to continue payments again, then he’d be a rare exception — and if he follows through with those promises, a very rare exception. Banks don’t just foreclose if you miss one or two payments or are just below the minimum… the foreclose is you’re continually negligent.

  6. Froggmann says:

    Hey at least he spelled the message right.

  7. JGKojak says:

    There ought to be a law that gives the owner the right of first refusal to buy back a property in foreclosure like this.

    I don’t know what the bank hopes to solve here… what- are they gonna sell the house on the open market in Carson, CA? I doubt it.

    • Corporate_guy says:

      @JGKojak: I think such a law would be very important. It would prevent banks from making sweet heart deals with third parties to buy up houses cheap. The home owner should get a last chance opportunity to buy the house for the price it goes for at auction.

      The same should go for all debt. Any time debt is being sold to a third party, the loanee should always get a last chance opportunity to buy it out for the price the 3rd party is paying. It makes no sense that a bank will sell a loan for a loss while the new loan owner gets to enforce the full debt.

    • johnarlington says:

      @JGKojak:

      There sort of is, the house goes to auction and since no one in their right mind would buy a house in this market, the bank holding the primary mortgage buys it.

    • failurate says:

      @JGKojak: Who is going to give a person who just bailed on a mortgage, another mortgage? What do you think this is, 2003?

  8. Mike Reyher says:

    Shoot the hostage.

    • pollyannacowgirl says:

      @Mike Reyher: LOL.@bentcorner: Thank you for bringing this up. That’s MY argument. You don’t really ever own it. The government owns it. Even if it’s not mortgaged, you still have to pay taxes. If you don’t pay the taxes, it’s not yours anymore. In NYC, the co-op and even condo boards are even pathologically restrictive about just about everything, and you only own the apartment from the paint inwards.

      Everyone argues with me about this and points out tax advantages, etc. Meh. I’d rather rent. When there’s a problem, I call the super. Evicting a tenant in NYC takes a LOT longer than foreclosure, too.

      I’m a foooooool! I am in no hurry to be a property owner.

  9. philmin says:

    This man is probably an example of a someone who received a subprime loan for a house he couldn’t really afford.

    Now, he wants a “creative solution”, which is probably similar to the creative solution he found when he bought a 200K house with nothing down and a 25k/yr salary in the first place.

    It is sad that people have to give up their homes, but its likely he couldnt afford it then, and he cant afford it now. The government needs to help where it can, but that help should not be bridging the simple gap between what people want and what they can actually afford.

    • MonkeyButt says:

      @philmin: Doesn’t the article say he’s got work now and wants to buy the house back?

      • philmin says:

        @MonkeyButt:

        Monkey, lets be real. If he couldnt really afford the home price before, he cant afford it now. It says he wants to “work out a loan” because he doesnt have the means to get a real loan that a bank should actually be giving.

        Think about it… if the bank is going to sell the home “under the home price” (which is a false concept, the price is the price), then he could just make an offer on that. However, it’s unlikely he can realistically afford that.

        The bank wants a better buyer then him. Please stop with these “creative loans”, its one of the things that got us in trouble in the first place.

        • SonicMan says:

          @philmin: Under the home price usually means auction. So that is correct.

          But what does the banki really have to lose here, if the would just reinstate his loan, he should be able to start paying again, he and the bank wins.

          IF he does not continue to pay the bill, then he loses and the bank can still sell off the house, just later.

          • philmin says:

            @SonicMan:

            Sonic, but it is just prolonging the issue. It is NOT smart to reinstate the loan: lets first assume the house is no longer worth 280K, lets also assume, since there was a foreclosure, the Torres family had very little equity in the home.

            So now, Mr. Torres who is in an industry that doesn’t neccesarily have steady work, wants to reinstate the loan that brought him to foreclosure in the first place? This leads to my main point… the loan was bad in the first place. He should have never gotte in, which is probably the banks first. He shouldnt get it back now.

        • SonicMan says:

          @philmin: I have a home and I am paying my bill. But If I were to lose my job, I would have to work something out with them. I even have a few months salary saved up in case I could not find a job quickly, but who really know how long someone could be out of work. Between Unemployment and my savings, I could probably make all my bill payments for about a year, but I think people are going almost 18 months trying to find jobs.

        • floraposte says:

          @philmin: He could afford the price before. He got laid off. Radical change of circumstances doesn’t make him an ambitious fool.

          • the_wiggle says:

            @floraposte: no it most certainly does not.

            most of the holier than thou commenters on this thread won’t acknowledge that choice slice of reality tho’

        • Alessar says:

          @philmin: I am interpreting the “work out a loan” statement to mean basic normal refinancing for a “real” loan.

    • OwenKlient says:

      @philmin: Why not read the article before jumping to conclusions about what he “probably” did or didn’t do? The article says, “The Torres family said they bought their house in 2002 for $280,000. Last year work was scarce for the oil-refinery worker. But Torres said he’s now working full-time and has the down payment to buy his old house back.”

      Why is there so much animosity toward consumers from commenters on this site? People seem to be willing to jump through all kinds of logical hoops to blame the consumers while holding corporations entirely blameless.

      • madanthony says:

        @OwenKlient:

        He may have the down payment to buy the house back, but that means he’s still going to need a mortgage. I can certainly understand why the bank would be reluctant to hand a mortgage back to someone who has already demonstrated having trouble making payments in the past.

        • OwenKlient says:

          @madanthony: It sounds like he’s had trouble one year out of the six he’s been a customer. I don’t think it’s unreasonable at all for the bank to work with him. He obviously seems dedicated to keeping his home, and it doesn’t sound like he’s trying to get something for nothing.

      • philmin says:

        @OwenKlient:

        Im definitely blaming the bank as well. There is key information missing from the article: what were the terms of his 2002 loan? Down payment? Credit level? Income? I am making assumptions, I admit, but one of those assumptions is that this family simply could not afford a 280k home, and based on the foreclosure it doesnt look realistic that they put anywhere near 20% of the home value as a down payment.

        Show me numbers in this article, and Ill believe Mr. Torres pleas more. But now it just looks like a human interest puff piece.

      • Skybolt says:

        @OwenKlient: My sense is that it’s a hostility towards people who appear to be working class or not formally educated.

    • Shadowman615 says:

      @philmin: Are you saying if you lost your job for a year you wouldn’t have any trouble paying your mortgage or rent, or whatever you pay?

    • vermontwriter says:

      @philmin: My friend hasn’t foreclosed yet and hopes to avoid it, but I’m not sure who to blame really.

      In her case, she was buying a $150k home but the house needed repairs. So the realtor and bank pushed her into an interest-only mortgage saying it was a great way to afford a house when you have a limited income. I worked in mortgages and told her she was making a mistake, but she felt her bank would never steer her wrong. (NOTE: Banks are greedy and in it only for themselves!)

      So she and her husband agreed to the terms and the bank went ahead and told her to borrow $200k for the needed roofing, flooring, doors and window repairs. They approved it without question.

      So here we are two years later. The interest rate on this “interest-only” mortgage tripled and suddenly they are struggling to keep up with the payments. They can’t refinance because the house is worth crap all – $130k at best and the repairs they planned to do – only half were done because surprise, surprise roofs and windows cost more than the bank estimated. So doors, flooring and walls were all that ever were completed, the rest of the money went into keeping up with the mortgage payments that started climbing.

      They’re trying to sell the house, but in two years only one person has looked at it and sanely walked away.

      They were stupid to cave to their banker’s pressure, but at the same time the bank that went ahead and pushed the interest-only loan for more than the appraised value of the house knowing their income levels – they should be ashamed of themselves.

    • Anonymous says:

      @philmin: “when he bought a 200K house”

      Probably more like a one to two million dollar house when he bought it a few years back. Cali’s market is insane. We lived in Santa Barbara, and crap homes were starting at 1.1-1.2 mil. We’re talking 2 (tiny) bedroom 1 bath 1/10 acre and a yard from the bowels of hell.

      Anywhere else looks dirt cheap after leaving that market.

  10. a5un says:

    I don’t really think anyone who took on adjustable rate loans “deserves” to stay his or her house if he or she can’t pay for it now. So, I don’t really feel bad for the man. And what kind of person would give out a loan to a person who has defaulted on you before? That’s just common sense for the bank to look for other buyers. Who knows when Mr. Torres will be out of a job again and take the house hostage.

    • OwenKlient says:

      @a5un: I strongly disagree with you. When banks sold adjustable rate mortgages, they did so by telling the consumer that they would be able to refinance in several years to a fixed rate mortgage. It sounds like this guy was able to afford the house under the original terms in 2002, but then with the economy tanking, credit markets freezing, and him unable to find sufficient work last year, he started having trouble. If he was a reliable customer for 5 or 6 years, why does he “deserve” to lose his house the one year he has trouble? He’s got the money now. There is no reason for them not to work with him.

      • frodolives35 says:

        @OwenKlient: Define Afford. If he had some interest only payment for 2 years or a teaser loan affording the initial payments is not being able to afford the payments. Many people have been screwed by OH you can refinance in 2 years when your payment history improves with this loan and then in 2 years whamo 24% and forclosure add to that the econimic climate and double whamo. Even with better credit no new loan and stuck with 24% interest.

  11. smashedpotats says:

    If he gets a “second chance” I am sure he will be kicking himself for using paint instead of sidewalk chalk.

  12. Canino says:

    This is a prime example of what cities have to do all over California, all over the nation,” said Carson Mayor Jim Dear.

    Excuse me, Mr. Mayor, what does city government have to do with anyone’s mortgage?

    • krispykrink says:

      @Canino: The city pays law enforcement, law enforcement enforces evictions. At gun point. We did 3 over the weekend.

      • Canino says:

        @krispykrink: But the mayor went on…

        They need to reach out to their population, to the constituencies, and look at creative solutions

        He was talking about creatively getting people out of their houses without using the SWAT team?

      • the_wiggle says:

        @krispykrink: that must be a truly stressful job. people get crazy stressed over vehicles, taxes, levies, etc. as it is.

    • Anonymous says:

      @Canino: In CA cities have everything to do with mortgages. Property values in Carson, due to the high number of foreclosures, have sent property values plummeting. That, in turn, sends the city coffers plummeting.

    • lowercase says:

      @Canino: Among other things, cities are spending millions keeping vacant properties reasonably clean, protected, and safe. Not to mention the loss in property tax revenue- no doubt 1100 empty homes is a huge hit in income for the city.

      • Canino says:

        @lowercase: Ah, yes…makes sense – they do have a stake in it.

        But I guess I still don’t see how local city government should get involved in finding some “creative solution”. After all, the solution would only work for the one city that implements it, or you would have thousands of different implementations in thousands of cities. The solution to the mortgage crisis isn’t a local issue. The effects are a local issue to be sure, but not the solution.

    • Rusted says:

      @Canino: If a house hasn’t been foreclosed on, the property tax is at the value it sold at plus a certain small percentage in increase each year in California. But I bought a house three months ago at 64,000 that was originally assessed at 213,000. Well, law is, that my property tax will be based on my purchase price. City Government is not happy about that loss in income.

  13. Oranges w/ Cheese says:

    I agree this is stupid, and I’m certain there were stories on here similar – a few missed payments in financial stress, but then when back on their feet the banks would rather take a HUGE loss then actually get their money back from the original owner. Totally, totally doesn’t make sense.

    I understand that there is an assumed risk – hike up their interest rate, then. But let them keep the damn house.

  14. FriarJohn says:

    I know I’m going to get smacked in the mouth for this but I gotta…

    So there should be no consequences for all these people who bought houses they couldn’t afford? They should just all get a pass? I’m not saying they all need to be put out on the street, but c’mon.

    • noscamsplease says:

      @FriarJohn:

      that’s exactly what is happening and will continue to happen. free passes all around. (unless you make over $75k a year, then you’re public enemy #1 to the government)

    • IT-Chick says:

      @FriarJohn:

      How is it a “free pass” for a bank to fix a bad loan? The people are still willing to pay, they are not asking for a free house. The consequences are f-d up credit and a higher interest rate. No one is paying their mortgages for them. Is it bette to have a ton of empty houses or houses selling for under market value that affect the home values of the people next door with a good mortgage?

    • Jack T Ripper says:

      @FriarJohn: I feel the same way!! I worked hard to earn the credit rating that I have that got me the interest rate on the home I bought. It isn’t fair that you can screw your credit up and then have the government come in and reset you back to zero. Why should someone who is irresponsible then and now be given a deal that I had to work my ass off for? If they are going to fix the mortgages of the 500 FICO crowd, then they should throw a bone to those of us in the 780+ FICO crowd. How ’bout cutting a point or two off my interest rate while you are at it? Or do I have to default and let the house go into foreclosure before you do that? I can afford the 5% I’ve got right now, but if foreclosing on the house will get me a 3% rate, then I guess that makes good sense.

      • SonicMan says:

        @ocdetails: So you could afford to keep making all your bill payments if you lost your job, and could not find one for a while?

        I am what most would call responsible. I pay all of my bills, I have a savings. But If I was out of work for more than a year, I would probably lose my home.

    • lannister80 says:

      @FriarJohn: Are you more interested in the well-being of the economy, or in justice?

      They economy affects EVERYONE. I’m not going to piss away my future because I need to ‘stick it’ to the people that made bad choices. The over-borrowers shouldn’t have been able to make those choices in the first place, because they bank should not have lent them the money.

      • madanthony says:

        @lannister80:

        The problem I have with rescuing the over-borrowers is that it will encourage people to make bad choices in the future. If the people who bought more house than they could afford, lied on their apps, and didn’t save up anything in case of an emergency get rescued, than nobody has an incentive to not do those things in the future. And because it costs the banks money to do those things, they will get it back by raising interest and fees for those who are responsible and pay their bills.

        • snowburnt says:

          @madanthony: it’ll be easy enough to tell who was cheated vs who was cheating. Most of the loan brokers that were predatory are under investigation or already sentenced.

    • kmw2 says:

      @FriarJohn: So tell me, FriarJohn. Presumably you bought a house you could afford, right? You lose your job tomorrow. How long can you go before you can’t make your payments anymore? A month? Six months? A year maybe if you have mortgage payment insurance? Does that mean you couldn’t afford the place when you bought it? Or that you don’t have any equity in the home? Or that you defrauded the bank to get the loan in the first place. No, it just means you failed to anticipate changes in circumstance and have committed the crime of not having enough money to buy out the bank. How about for once you think before you’re “that guy”?

    • Shadowman615 says:

      @FriarJohn: The reason you are going to get smacked in the mouth is because you are sounding off about something obviously didn’t even bother to read this article before you starting sounding off from your high-horse. This guy did not buy a house he couldn’t afford. He became unable to afford it when he couldn’t get work for most of a year.

    • snowburnt says:

      @FriarJohn: What is your definition of a free pass? Most of the people want to live in their homes long term and pay off their mortgages. How is that a free pass? IMO they were paying WAY too much because they were lied to, cheated, and everyone that could trust on the matter told them the same thing. Most of the modifications that have come to pass require the home owner to stay in the home for at least 5 years. For some people that’s a pretty big deal and it will allow the bank to continue to receive money.

      The only way they could conceivably have a “free pass” is foreclosure in which they don’t have to pay back the loan they couldn’t afford, which is what everyone is advocating their punishment should be.

    • trujunglist says:

      You can all argue all day long about who deserves a “handout” and who doesn’t, but the reality is that there is no cut and dry black and white line drawn in the sand here. Each case has to be considered individually. If a guy got a loan via shady methods and really couldn’t afford it, then fuck him, he screwed up and needs to pay the consequences. If, on the other hand, due to the entire market exploding some hard-working guy loses a well-paying job and tries to make it for a year before having to bail out, then we should probably do what we can to help until he gets back on his feet.
      I think liberals understand that it’s not a binary issue.. conservatives tend to be very binary.

  15. Nearsite00 says:

    I applaud this man! clap clap clap

  16. The_Red_Monkey says:

    Since I don’t know his situation personally I can’t comment on if he had a cheater of a loan officer who lied but most people in ARMs knew that they could not afford the home and thought it would go up 20% a month and they would make a killing. Now its time to pay the piper and I get to pay with my taxes and the lack of money out there for me to buy a home.

    I would like some free money from someone. Where is my bailout since I am making the right decisions? Nope, instead I am getting punished for not jumping on the bandwagon.

    • smartmuffin says:

      @The_Red_Monkey: I believe that making the right decisions is now known as “greed” and is villified in the public discourse.

    • kmw2 says:

      @The_Red_Monkey: most people in ARMs knew that they could not afford the home and thought it would go up 20% a month and they would make a killing.

      Oh really? Do you ahve proof for that?

    • floraposte says:

      @The_Red_Monkey: He couldn’t afford the payments because he got laid off. Before he got laid off he afforded them just fine. Now he’s got a lucrative salary on which he can easily afford the house.

      Just how many years of payments should suddenly jobless people be able to make on their house if they don’t want to be accused of being opportunistic deadbeats?

    • vermontwriter says:

      @The_Red_Monkey: I was wondering that today. I want some bailout money. Chrysler’s announced they need 9 billion more. Homeowners facing foreclosures are benefitting in the way of locked in, ridiculously low rates.

      If I had $100k I could pay off every speck of debt I owe for the mortgage that I have remaining, credit card debt, and my car loan. That’s pocket change compared to some of these other bailouts!

  17. lpranal says:

    Just wait until someone claims they were attacked by a subprime lender and had a backwards $ sign carved in their cheek. now THAT’s how you get media attention.

  18. Trai_Dep says:

    Perhaps if he spelled out his message using decapitated bankers’ heads, he might get through the customer service queue a bit faster.

  19. bentcorner says:

    It never was “his” home to begin with. That’s something none of these people seem to understand when they whine about losing “their” home. The bank owns the home, not them. The bank allows them to live in it as long as they pay rent.

    They disguise it by calling it a “mortgage”.

    Stop paying rent, you will eventually get evicted.

    • lannister80 says:

      @bentcorner: And the alternative is…? Let me know when you save up $120,000 in cash and can buy a house.

    • Karita says:

      @bentcorner: Actually, you are incorrect. The bank DOES NOT own the home.

      A borrower has the title to the home even if they have granted a mortgage to the lender. A lender will not make a mortgage loan unless the borrower has title to the home. This is true whether it is a first, second, third etc mortgage. (And keep in mind that the mortgage is not the same thing as the loan.)

      An easy way to see that the borrower is the one that owns the home – there is no transfer of ownership when the mortgage is paid off. A mortgage will be released when paid, but the bank does not execute a warranty deed (or a similar form of deed) at that point.

      Another easy way to see the difference – if the bank owned the home, they would institute eviction proceedings if the borrower stopped paying. Instead, they begin foreclosure proceedings.

      • bentcorner says:

        @Karita: And what exactly is the difference between a foreclosure and an eviction? The end result is the same. You are kicked out of the place you were living.

        Any way you slice it, this guy never owned “his” home. The same thing is try with everyone that has “their” home foreclosed on.

        • Karita says:

          @bentcorner: @bentcorner: What is the difference? Go to housing court and try to evict someone that owns their home. The judge will dismiss your case immediately.

          From google search:
          Foreclosure: the legal proceedings initiated by a creditor to repossess the collateral for loan that is in default
          Eviction: action by a landlord that compels a tenant to leave the premises

          A mortgagor has granted his home as collateral for a loan. A tenant has the right to occupy a premises for a fixed period of time. There is a huge difference. The final, end result may look the same to someone who doesn’t follow the legal proceedings for each type of case – the resident no longer lives in their home. But the legal principles and processes are completely different.

          Any way you slice it, a mortgagor does own his home. Go to the land records in your town or county. Look up 20 people who have mortgages on their home. You will see the deeds granting the homes to all 20 people. That means they own the home, just as much as someone who has paid off their mortgage owns their home. You won’t find the same thing with tenants.

          Any homeowner can tell you how much equity they have in their home. A tenant will tell you that they have no equity, no matter how long they’ve lived there or how much they’ve paid.

          I can tell you are not a lawyer, and I understand that property law is confusing for most people – even most lawyers who don’t do real estate work. But believe me, people who are being foreclosed upon do own their homes right up until the end. If you want me to give you dry boring legal explanations, I’m happy to do so.

          • bentcorner says:

            @Karita: I’m not referring to legalities. I’m referring to reality. This guy no more owned “his” home then I own the apartment unit I pay rent on.

            Too many people — this guy included — have been sold a bill of goods into believing that they “own” the home they are paying a mortgage on.

            Even people that have paid off their mortgage still don’t really own the home they live in. All they have to do is to stop paying the property taxes on the home they think they own and they will see very quickly just who owns the home they live in. Or ask the folks that lived in New London, CT just who owned “their” homes when the local government there used eminent domain to build a business park.

            And do you honestly believe people have any real equity in these homes they think they own? Equity? It’s thinking like that that put a lot of people into the position they find themselves in now.

            The great philosopher Ron Bennington once said that the world can be broken down into two groups: rubes and carnies. The guy in the news story is not a carny.

            • Karita says:

              @bentcorner: I guess we just aren’t going to agree on this. I see a huge difference in the two – legally, emotionally and practically. The reality is that a person who buys a home and grants a mortgage owns their home. And I’m comfortable with the knowledge that I own the home I just bought, even though there is a mortgage on it. It’s all mine, and I can do what I want to it, which I could never do in the apartments I rented. Sure, I know I have to pay my lender every month. But I know that I own it, and it feels great.

              The town does not own my home or my land. Taxes are fees assessed for services provided, not rent charged for the right to use a lot or unit. A town can put a lien on property if you taxes aren’t paid, and that grants them an interest upon which they can foreclose. But it’s not owned by the town. And eminent domain is a legal principle that predates the pilgrims – it has to do with the public good and is rarely exercised. But neither offer any proof that one does not own their home. A plumber can put a lien on a home if he isn’t paid for the work he did there – that doesn’t mean he owns the home. My neighbor might claim a strip of my lot through adverse possession. The fact that he might be able to do that in the future does not mean he has any ownership interest in my property right now.

              People don’t have equity in their homes? That’s good to know. I suppose the next time I’m sitting at the closing table, I’ll just keep the proceeds check that is made out to the seller. After all, there is no such thing as equity, so they won’t miss it.

              • bentcorner says:

                @Karita: Case in point: my boss had to go out on his lunch break to get a permit from the town he lives in to take down the deck behind his home. The home he supposedly owns. He has to pay the town for permission to take down a deck he built himself. If that’s ownership, I’m happy to rent.

                So how much equity does a person have if they owe the bank more money then the home they are living in is actually worth? And when I speak of worth, I’m talking about the hard dollar amount they could get for the home today. Not after it has been listed on the market for six months. Not what they’ve been told their home is worth. What they can actually get for their home today.

                • Karita says:

                  @bentcorner: Zoning laws exist to benefit the community as a whole, not to prove your boss doesn’t own his home. And obviously someone who owes more than the home is worth has no equity. That does not mean equity doesn’t exist for all those people who owe less than the home is worth.

                  I don’t know what political philosophy you subscribe to, but I’m giving up on this argument. Your hypos are getting ridiculous, and while they might support your paranoid viewpoint, they do not work when applied to the structure of this society. I think in your later years, you’ll regret the decision not to own a home, if only because it’s cheaper than renting, but it’s definitely your choice and not one that concerns me.

                  • bentcorner says:

                    @Karita: My point Karita is that if you must first get permission before removing a deck from your property, you don’t own that property.

                    Structure of our society? Let’s count how many government bailouts that little myth will require before it’s all said in done. I’m guessing a lot more than the two we’ve already had in the last six months.

                    • Traveshamockery says:

                      @bentcorner: I have to get a license before I drive my car. Do I own my car? I have to get a concealed carry license before carrying a gun hidden on my person. Do I own myself? Do I own my gun? I have to get a doctor’s prescription to buy certain medication. Do I own that medicine once I buy it?

                      I agree with almost all of your points made, but pretending that people don’t own their homes becauese they can’t build a 400 foot radio tower on their roof without a government permit is a little off the wall.

                      It’s a little weird he needed a permit to tear something down, but for building a deck, it makes perfect sense – the government exists (in theory) for the common welfare of the people, and that’s evolved into the gov. believing they need to protect your visitors against shoddy deck-building. I’m not defending that nanny-state oversight, just stating the reason.

                    • bentcorner says:

                      @InfiniTrent: I was just trying to put things into context.

                      This guy never really owned this house. He and his wife bought it in 2002 for $210,000. He refinanced it a year later, increasing the loan to $254,000. And why not? His home was worth that much, right?

                      In 2006, he refinanced the loan again, this time he borrowed $316,000 against the house.

                      In 2007 he got laid off from his job and the rest is history. He owes a lot more money than he has ever put into the home. He owes a lot more money than the home is worth. I doubt the home is worth the initial $210,000 be bought it for in 2002. For one thing, now it needs a new roof. Also, according to the mayor, their are 1,100 homes in foreclosure in his town. This drives the value down on every home in Carson.

                    • RandomHookup says:

                      @bentcorner: Not if you live in the boonies with no zoning laws.

                      Under your argument, no one owns any real estate at all because they are subject to some limitations on use.

            • Adrienne Willis says:

              @bentcorner: totally random but i love you for bringing up the greatest man on radio!! Ron and Fez noon to 3!

            • fatcop says:

              @bentcorner: All hail Mr. B.

        • failurate says:

          @bentcorner: And once you pay off your mortgage, try not paying your property taxes. Then you really find out who owns the land you live on.

    • Rusted says:

      @bentcorner: Or pay cash.

  20. smartmuffin says:

    I hope this guy gets twenty years in prison. Enough of this media circus that portrays deadbeats as victims. The bank has no obligation to let him buy the house back under new terms, regardless of whether or not *he* thinks it would benefit them. Maybe they just don’t feel like it. How about that?

    • Mirshaan says:

      @smartmuffin:

      I hope you lose your job and get to feel the stress of not knowing how you are going to pay everything. Clearly you have no concept of what it’s like to be out of work, have no work available to you, and to not know how you are going to take care of the stack of bills on the kitchen table. Perhaps, if you are ever unfortunate enough to feel the sting of that situation, you could find a way to describe someone having trouble as something less derogatory and imflaming than “deadbeat”… in case you haven’t seen the news lately, our country is full of (your term) “deadbeats”… and more are joining the unemployment lines every day.

      Have a modicom of tact.

      • smartmuffin says:

        @Mirshaan: IF I lost my job, I would understand that my landlord has no obligation to continue to let me live there for no money. And that she wouldn’t necessarily have to keep me if I missed a couple months payments, even if I promised to stop missing them from them on. It would be a terrible situation and I would probably be very depressed, but I wouldn’t be demanding that others suffer a financial loss in order to offset my own bad situation.

        Compassion is bankrupting our nation. I’m sick of it. Either learn to pay for your stuff, or stop buying stuff. If you buy stuff you can’t pay for, expect to have that stuff taken away.

        • SonicMan says:

          @smartmuffin: Actually, its takes a LONG time to get rid of a tennent. So you can probably get by missing a few rent checks.

          But this is more like you telling youir landlord that you will make up the late payments and be on time, but the landlord would rather just keep the place empty and take a loss instead.

          • smartmuffin says:

            @SonicMan: If she wants to, that’s her right. In fact, she can get rid of me with a 30 day notice for any reason she’d like, up to and including “because I feel like it”

            I also find it kind of amusing that the guy in this story, as well as various random individuals on the Internet assume to know what would be best for the bank. I’m gonna go ahead and assume that if the bank truly thought letting him stay would make them the most money, he would stay. Unless you *literally* view corporate executives as super-villians who only started a business as an excuse to ruin peoples lives…

            • SonicMan says:

              @smartmuffin: You should check your states laws. It usually takes MUCH longer than that to be kicked out.

              The problem with banks is that they are looking to make the books look good for this quarter, and repossing the home helps there. But over the long term, it is usually not better for the banks, since they mostly lose money then they reposses. “But its first quarter, and thats a 3rd quarter problem….”

              • smartmuffin says:

                @SonicMan: I don’t have a lease. It’s a month to month agreement. I keep a copy handy to refer to if necessary, and it clearly states that the agreement can be terminated by either party for any reason as long as 30 days notice is given.

                I’m not sure if that means that on the 30th day the cops show up or what, but if she asked me to get out, I’d get out. I’m just that kind of guy. There are plenty of other places to live.

                • trujunglist says:

                  @smartmuffin:

                  Where are you gonna live with no money? Under a bridge? Sounds like a lot of fun. Oh, you think there are a bunch of shelters that’ll just take you, a DEADBEAT, in? Not at all, good luck with that, and besides, why should my tax dollars go to pay for your cot and peanut butter sandwich? Good luck surviving if you lose your job and your land lady wants you out, since you’re that kind of guy.

                • RandomHookup says:

                  @smartmuffin: The cops definitely don’t show up on day 31. The landlord has to go to court to get an order (usually a bunch of notices go back and forth) and to get a court date for a hearing. If you contest the eviction, there are parts of the country where it can be 6 months or more before you are forced out.

      • jcargill says:

        Compassionate and conservative rarely go together. And even if he did lose his job, he would likely not falter in his convictions, even as he is carried away to debtors’ prison.

    • Skybolt says:

      @smartmuffin: I think that what you do not understand is that society cannot function if people do only the minimum required by law and formal obligation. Decency and compassion are what holds the entire civilization together in the spaces where the law fails. The fact is that it is not all right to toss someone out of their home because they have financial problems and can’t pay rent for a while. It is legal. It is also immoral. Personally I expect more from people than just waving a contract around.

      • Traveshamockery says:

        @Skybolt:

        The fact is that it is not all right to toss someone out of their home because they have financial problems and can’t pay rent for a while.

        So what about the landlord who now can’t feed his family or pay his mortgage because a tenant won’t pay the rent? Should “compassion” dictate that landlord go hungry and let his tenant live for free? No. He/she should be able to kick out that tenant after a reasonable period of time to protect his/her own interests, such as a continuing income to support his/her family.

        • SonicMan says:

          @InfiniTrent: It was an example. Sure the landlord should be able to feed his family.
          But the Bank is not like that. If the landlord was to tell the client, sorry, I do not care if you can be up to date next month. I have another tennent that is willing to pay me a full year in advance, at half what you are paying. Sure its less in the long run, but I can not see past this quarter, so it looks better on paper for me to take that amount now.

          • quizmasterchris says:

            @SonicMan: You could play SmartMuffin the Oscar Brand song “Pity the Poor Landlord” and he would think it wasn’t parody.

            Last thinking person in America, please turn out the light when you leave…

          • Traveshamockery says:

            @SonicMan: A bank is made up of employees, whose continued employment is contingent on the bank making money. People don’t pay, people get fired.

            Economics 101 – there is no such thing as a free lunch.

            • SonicMan says:

              @InfiniTrent: Yep, Thats righ banks have employees.

              Please please le me and everyone else know how this benefits the bank.

              This guy Wants to keep making payments and live in the 280k Home. Over the live of the loan the back is should get at LEASET 560k..

              The bank wants to forclose, This usually means they seel the home at a loss. Maybee they see it at 200k, probably less.

              So the bank would rather take a loss now and get some money shortterm, rather than make a profit in the long term.

              Is this the banks plan?
              1 Give a 280k Mortgage
              2 Forclose and see the home for less than 280k
              3 ???
              4 Profit.

            • Skybolt says:

              @InfiniTrent: If people don’t pay, then someone decides to fire them. It is a decision made by a person, not an inevitability. There are ways to run an economy that don’t depend on everyone robbing and abusing each other for profit.

        • Skybolt says:

          @InfiniTrent: Compassion dictates that neither of them go hungry. Obviously you and I do not want to live in the same kind of society. There is no “reasonable period” after which is is morally acceptable to make someone homeless. The landlord’s interests do not take precedence over those of the tenant, or vice-versa. It is in society’s interest that both of them have their basic needs provided.

    • faintandfuzzies says:

      @smartmuffin: Be sure and let us know when you loose your job, home, & life as you know it so we can give you the same treatment as you have to this guy!

      • smartmuffin says:

        @faintandfuzzies: If I lose my job, I have a few months worth of savings to fall back on. If I am able to find a new job, I would understand that my landlord, after months of missed payments, probably doesn’t want to keep me as a tenant, and I would find someplace else to live (actually right now I’m living in a much bigger place than I need, so at any sign of financial difficulty I’d probably downgrade anyway). If I couldn’t find a job, I’d reach out to friends and family to take me in, which they would. If they wouldn’t, and I truly had no marketable skill to offer society, I guess I’d die in the street. And I would deserve to.

  21. FuryOfFirestorm says:

    Desperate measures by desperate people in desperate times.

  22. Silversmok3 says:

    The sad truth is in most cases, nothing can be done.

    Look at it from the bank’s eyes for a second-If someone calls the bank looking for a deal due to unemployment, as far as the bank’s concerned you wont make the mortgage next month, and wont be able to make it realistically for months after that, given how long it takes to find a new job these days.

    So, you either suspend payments (meaning zero income in a time where the bank is bleeding billons)
    Or you lower the payments (by writing down the value of the property to current levels, which screws you as the lender in the long term)
    Or you start foreclosure proceedings,and get at least a secured fraction of the money back on the property.

    So,no , it doesnt surprise me that banks ‘lose’ the documents, stonewall on the phone, or just outright lie to the borrower to run the clock down until they can foreclose.

    And house prices have fallen so bad the ‘deed-in-lieu’ isnt really an option anymore-either you sell the home and write a large check for the difference between the loan and the sale price, or you convince the bank to eat the loss.

    Riiiighht….

    A forclosure gets the bank a property,at least a fraction of the loan value back, and in some states can chase the borrower for the deficency judgement.

  23. johnarlington says:

    No one was complaining when housing prices were going up at 20% a year. Nobody stopped to say, “hey, maybe this rapid appreciation is not based in any underlying increase in value.” Instead, every thought they were getting rich. Well not the reverse is happening and every one is insisting that government gets involved to save houses and prop up the housing market. As someone who saw the bubble for what it was and chose to delay his home purchase until the market returned to prices based in reality, I’m going to be pretty pissed off when the government takes my tax dollars and gives them to someone who made poor decisions. I’m pretty sure that I’m not the only one out there who is going to be a bit tweaked over Obama’s proposed housing fix.

    • smartmuffin says:

      @johnarlington: As long as “people who make responsible decisions” represent an electoral minority… politicians have nothing to fear.

    • Fresh-Fest-1986 says:

      @johnarlington: What should the president do? I am seriously asking. Because everyone I’ve heard who is so against this has no solutions to offer. And please, please, please don’t say tax cuts.

      I’m no more happy then anyone else about having to pay for potentially irresponsible people, but what the hell is the alternative? Should we just leave the housing market alone? Let all these people lose their homes? Not help the job market at all?

      How much is that $8 a week going to help when our whole economy collapses?

      • TecmoTech says:

        @Fresh-Fest-1986:

        Who cares if they lose their homes. It’s not like there aren’t any homes for RENT or apartments out there. Let the market correct. For every dope that bought more house than he could afford, there was a guy like me (and a guy like johnarlington) who was waiting patiently for the bubble to burst.

        I hate that these people act like its an obamination to live in an apartment. I’ve hopped around apartments for 12 years. I could never afford to buy. I am not a social degenerate. Apartments/duplexes/rental homes didn’t kill me.

        This guy should just leave the house and let the bank try to sell it to the next guy. He can rent an apartment until he saves up for a down payment on a new home.

        • TheSpatulaOfLove says:

          @TecmoTech: He can rent an apartment until he saves up for a down payment on a new home.

          Reading is fundamental!

          But Torres said he’s now working full-time and has the down payment to buy his old house back.

      • the_wiggle says:

        @Fresh-Fest-1986: $8/wk = not much. this collapse continues spiraling down, we are all in for one hellish ride.

        food/medicine/water/fuel production & distribution gaps, escalating civil unrest & so on.

        punishment for idiocy would be ideal, but we have to live in the real. the real is we have to give up punishment in the short & quite possibly medium term.

        we have to concentrate on figuring out a solution that let’s most of us survive with hope for a better life as there damned sure is no where else to emigrate or conquer (traditional ways of bailing on or handling collapses).

        compromise: Such an adjustment of conflicting interests as gives each adversary the satisfaction of thinking he has got what he ought not to have, and is deprived of nothing except what was justly his due.
        ~Devil’s Dictionary

        impossible to negotiate to compromise when clinging to a need for punishment issuance well past practicality.

        fix stuff now – take names & kick ass later. or there may not be a later.

  24. kwsventures says:

    Depending on big daddy government to takeaway your pain will be the ultimate demise of our economy.Eventually, the Federal Reserve printing press will meltdown. Trying to prop up real estate prices will never work. I don’t care how much taxpayer money is thrown at the situation. Prices need to fall a lot more. Delaying tactics will not work. The faster the real estate foreclosure auctions are completed, the faster the economy will heal. For those losing their residence –note, it is not their home, if they have a loan — I say, it is time to rent.

    I saw thousands of loan applications –yes, thousands — during my time at Countrywide. Nearly anyone with a heart beat was trying to get a loan. Or so it seemed. It was nothing to see $30,000.00 in credit card debt on a credit report. Then the stupid consumer would want to take that unsecured debt and roll it into the new mortgage loan, making it secured debt. How crazy, you must be to do this. So, let’s assume, the loan was approved. Countrywide did not force, or even ask, the consumer to close those credit card accounts. So, what happened? In no, time many folks started piling up the credit card debt again, using their property as an ATM machine. Hoping they would be able to refinance again the in the near future. Finally, the music stopped and the residence ATM game ended with many consumers in terrible financial shape.

    Regarding adjustable rate mortgages: I would always tell the consumer the worst case scenario regarding how high the monthly payment could go. I would tell them the range, say, $1,200.00 to $3,850.00 per month if rates went to the cap limit. Not once did any consumer tell me they wanted to back out of the loan process because the monthly payment range was too high. NOT ONCE. The warning was ignored every time. To those people that ignored me and are going to lose their residence soon, I say, renting a residence is not the end of the world.

  25. rockasocky says:

    I would never write a message on the roof of my house, primarily because of my fear of aliens. And isn’t “I want 2 be heard” rather similar to “I want to believe”? Maybe this is just a promo for a new X Files movie!

  26. maevealleine says:

    My landlord that I’m renting my house from just decided that he was going to stop paying his mortgage and pocket our rent. Yes, he actually told us this when we let him know we were moving.

    I feel NOTHING for these people who are losing their houses. Didn’t they read the fine print? Aren’t they adults knowing the risks of home ownership? Why shoud I, as a taxpayer, pay for their mistakes or misfortunes. Life isn’t fair. Get over it.

    • Traveshamockery says:

      @maevealleine: Unfortunately, your comment here applies to you and I as well:

      Life isn’t fair. Get over it.

    • Skybolt says:

      @maevealleine: @maevealleine: You, as a holy, sainted Taxpayer, should pay for the mistakes of others because in civilization, we are all responsible for one another. Don’t try to justify your moral blind spots with a cliche like “life isn’t fair.” We can choose to treat each other fairly or unfairly. Apparently you prefer that we treat each other unfairly, with as little empathy and as much cruelty as possible. But try not to screw up the country for the rest of us.

  27. faintandfuzzies says:

    Be sure and let us know when you are about to loose your home or apartment so that way we can react the way you have.

  28. Traveshamockery says:

    Spraypainting the roof is not going to help his resale value.

  29. Liz11685 says:

    This reminds me of a house on my street. 5 college boys living there, paying rent, and the landlord wasn’t paying the mortgage. They got evicted last week, and spray painted shit all over the house and wrecked the inside. They had tried to haggle with the bank and the bank wasn’t interested.

    • Traveshamockery says:

      @Liz11685: They got screwed, but they should be prosecuted for destruction of property.

      • Fresh-Fest-1986 says:

        @InfiniTrent: Or better yet we could behead them up for their complete disrespect of the law.

        We could go after them but that would be vigilante justice and we could be prosecuted.

    • Ajh says:

      @Liz11685: There should be laws to get the landlord in legal trouble for that. I wonder if the boys can press charges for theft…. He took their money for the home and didn’t provide it.

  30. Anonymous says:

    Golly, I feel sorry for him. I’ve lived cheap for 30 years now, apartments in the ghettoes of Oakland and Queens, garage apartments in the midwest, eaten rice and beans most of my life as my staple. All the while people like this guy have been borrowing from rich people (banks) and expecting that the banks would be nice. And now my taxes are going to pay for this dude and others like him to get bailed out? While I’m still living cheap like I always have? I think he should live in a little apartment, and people like me should get his house. If I’m bailing him out wih tax money, I want his house. He gets the slum. I don’t feel one bit sorry for him or anyone like him. I’d like to see him living in his car, like I have for months at a time.

  31. P41 says:

    You gotta remember these are the same banks that think they’re helping out homeowners by INCREASING their monthly payments.

  32. consumerd says:

    I think it was a spacing issue. After all he wanted to make it large enough to be read. I have a feeling space meant more than the correct spelling.

  33. chocolate1234 says:

    I’m amazed at the number of people on this site that have absolutely NO compassion. My guess is that you people have never had the misfortune of losing work while you’re trying to support a family. It would be one thing if this guy was a loser who wasn’t making his monthly payments simply because he didn’t want to. According to the article, the only reason he stopped paying was because he was out of work for a long period of time – like millions of other people around this country. Some things are simply nobody’s fault. Whether or not you think the bank should allow this guy a second chance, I think you should at least have a little compassion and realize that many people are suffering due to no fault of their own.

  34. u1itn0w2day says:

    As much as empathize with his plight I was shocked to find that the house was only 280K .Almost low enough to be a flip-don’t know .

    It sounds like the down payment wasn’t that much so 280K and interest with 5% down tops ??? .I guess that’s why no short sell .

    I admire his fervor in trying to keep his old house but a place to live and not ownership is more the entitlement here .

    I’d like to learn about his loan and down payment ,his equity ,how far behind and his other debt .280k in Calif can swing either way to a flipper or ARM home buyer .

    But again OWNING a home is not an entitlement .Being told the truth by real estate and banker types is an entitlement though .

  35. highpitch_83 says:

    Why has no one touched on the fact the just because NOW this guy is working full time doesn’t mean he WILL BE if the bank were to sell the house back to him?!

    The more likely scenario is: dude went in with an inconsistent income over the last few months and with the re-enforced lending restrictions (doing what they should have done in the first place), he wasn’t allowed the opportunity to buy back the house.