Fighting the good fight to keep your home?

Did you try to avoid foreclosure for as long as you could?

New data from Atlanta-based Equifax suggest many distressed homeowners in the state are fighting longer to keep their houses, AJC writer Scott Trubey reports.

The data also suggest that “strategic defaults” — when borrowers simply walk away — are less common nationally and in Georgia than previously thought, Trubey writes.

The issue of strategic default “is not as bad as everybody is talking about,” Afshin Goodarzi, managing director of Equifax Capital Markets, told Trubey.

Did you try to avoid foreclosure until all other options were exhausted? Did your lender try to help or obstruct?

Are you trying to hang on now? What’s your lender doing?

Or have you decided to walk away because the value of your home is far less than what you owe? If so, are you concerned about getting credit in the future?

- Henry Unger, The Biz Beat

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter.

56 comments Add your comment

MsMinLoganville

February 25th, 2011
7:33 am

As a homeowner for the past 11 yrs, 9 of which were as a single parent of 3, ive NEVER missed a payment or been late but, with all 3 kids out of the house (2 in college this fall) and one graduated from college 2 yrs ago, having watched my home value plummet from an appraised value of $210k in 2005, to who knows what its appraising at now, probably $170k – im no longer interested in keeping this house for the sake of passing it down to my children as its too big and I just dont want it. Also, I received a bill from my mortgage company telling me that my property insurance and pmi has gone up $1000 for the year and were I to pay that in total, i’d STILL have to pay nearly $20 more per month on my mortgage which is a locked in rate ……walking away from this home is looking better by the day because im beginning to sink and see no profit for ME! EVERYTHING is going up and the fact that the mortgage company has gone up on my mortgage KNOWING FULL WELL that im paying more for this home than its worth by a boatload, im not even interested in trying to negotiate a lower payment anymore because they’re just going to GO UP again …..last year, for the entire year, I paid an additional $100/mo just to try and get some of my interest eaten up …..

[...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Rachel Mello, Henry Unger. Henry Unger said: Fighting the good fight to keep your home? http://bit.ly/fax9il [...]

Buried

February 25th, 2011
7:55 am

@ MsMinLoganville

I feel your pain….I built my house 5 yrs ago and paid $250k, Theres a house exactly like mine around the corner from me, builder went bankrupt and the house sold 3 months ago for $154,900…I still owe $221,000…The house was assesed for $166k last year….Talk about depressing and being buried

Bright Idea

February 25th, 2011
8:00 am

@MsMinLoganville
Walking away is looking better by the day because you see no profit for yourself? Who are you going to shaft if you walk away? You know your mortgage company doesn’t just charge what they feel like based on the fluctuating value of your house.

paid off

February 25th, 2011
8:28 am

dont buy any more houses mini….dead beat

stives

February 25th, 2011
8:36 am

Georgia is a worse-state that is behind time. In fact, it make itself look like less then Southern. A state that should promote genuine showmanship to all who come and want to live, work and play here. It is discussing how its people are treated and it still has this thing about itself that if you are not one of the (haves) you can’t play in our arena. Well, the housing market was one of Georgia biggest money-maker; and when the chips start falling, everybody went into this foreclosure action that start the down-lowering of homes. Businesses start laying people off and Auto Companies start closing dealerships. The fahrenheit start to rise and everyone became so desperate that none of them actually used their heads. It is beeter to keep people in their home who had jobs making some payments if they could not make full payments; real estate companies and realtors, brokers all start to crash because they all was part of the thousands trying to make a buck on commissions while not doing a good job of saying no to those who paychecks could not afford big homes. Did I accelerate to even real estate companies and brokers and realtors in general going into the poor house. Now, who is purchaisng big cars and homes…..as they once did when they are not worth nothing. Every auto dealer and auto maker needs to understand one thing, we are not purchasing high price new cars anymore; nor are we in the market to purchase big homes either; you might get a few but it will never bust as big as it was. Here we have a new era and it will always be nauseous because things will neve be as they were! We are stealing for self, taking and not supporting the lease of thee; and we still are in this Black and White mindset; but those who have been looing in for a long time are now on the inside looking out; those who have cheated and stole from other are now behind bars. You do the math; was it all worth it when you cause your business to fail or you put people out of work. It take the public to put money into the economy; without such, things begun to tumble quick and those who have money might as well not still become prejudice of others who are trying to get or make it anyway they can. This is a new era the privilege and sacrifice many made have been deeply impacted on the backs of other hard working people of all races. It take all of us to move our economy; and many of us think that it is not worth it because we still are living back in old times and we want to remain in the arena of the have(s) and haves(not). I find Georga very disappointing and defendant of its very own people who have struggled so hard to bind the ties that have forever seperated it as it is continuing to do. North and South Fulton, it should just be Fulton. East and West Atlanta, no doubt, race is playing a part. Finally, I have seen the thousands of face of homelessness and sickness of people from all races; it make me sick to my heart to see so much money being wasted and the horrific treatment of Georgia people! Congratulations to your elected state Representatives and Senators who continue to sit in Washington, DC and live the life while many of you still are suffering. It is time for changing of the guards here in Georiga to give full accountability of their action they have done in Washington on your behalf. Rise Up!

Doc Hollidawg

February 25th, 2011
8:58 am

MsMin….while it is unfortunate with what has happened to property values, you attitude is deplorable. The mortgage company made you a loan in good faith and it is not the mortgage companies fault your property taxes and insurance have gone up. If you have PMI, you also did not put down enough money when you bought the house to begin with. It is this “ME ME ME” attitude that is sinking not only the housing market, but our country.

Quick question. If your house had gone up in value, or your PMI and insurance gone down, would have offered to pay MORE to your mortgage company? Let them share in your success? I thought not.

Doc Hollidawg

February 25th, 2011
8:59 am

Also MsMin…when you pay an extra $100 a month it goes to principal, not interest.

Dawn L Hommes-Salmon

February 25th, 2011
9:05 am

Stop beating up on MsMinLoganville, whose tax dollars bailed out the banks when they were ‘overextended’? Why can’t MsMinLoganville expect some help from our government or the bank that her very own tax dollars bailed out? This is not a black or white issue, it is entirely gray.

Road Warrior

February 25th, 2011
9:05 am

MsMin, I have to agree with the above posts. The “walkaway” mindset is a lame solution at best. I recently bought a new car, and as they say, the car depreciates as soon as you leave the lot. I guess in your world, I should just walk away from my commitment to the financier, because the car isn’t worth what I paid for it. Nice!

Mo for sho

February 25th, 2011
9:36 am

the corrupt banks created all these problems and they got bailed out. You should walk away from underwater loans and let these crooked bankers deal with it.

NotImpressed

February 25th, 2011
9:41 am

@ MisMinLoganville- I am amazed that you want to just walk away from an obligation because you no longer want the house. YOU are part of the problem.

Homeowner

February 25th, 2011
9:49 am

You can do everything right and still not have what you need. We tried to refinance this year. We bought our hoe at $125,000 and appraised this year at $45,000. It was disheartening to say the least. We did everything right. The only thing that kept us from refinancing was the home value. Are we going to dump our home? No, we can’t even think about doing something like that. But we do pay our mortgage on time every month. We have never missed a payment or anything like that. But because we were so conscious about our credit and keeping within our means. It just sucks that because of the others we are paying for it.

The Economy

February 25th, 2011
9:56 am

You havent lost a thing until you sell, like a stock it goes up and down. Ride out the market, may take 5-7yr before prices get back to 2006 values.

Road Warrior

February 25th, 2011
9:58 am

Homeowner – “It just sucks that because of the others we are paying for it.”

Agreed. Most everyone is in the same boat, however, the test of character really seperates those who, no nmatter what, honor their word and their commitments, and those who simply walk away because the situation is no longer to their advantage.

Back in the 30’s 40’s and 50’s, my grandparents came close on a number of occasions to losing their ranch in Montana. Instead of walking away form their commitment, they stuck it out doing whatever was needed to pay the bills. I doubt the idea of walking away ever entered their minds.

Fast forward to the 90’s. Through negotiations, my grandfather agreed to allow the state access to the natuaral gas deposits located on the property. Even after his and my grandmothers death, the state still cuts our family a check each month for roughly $8,000 a month. We don’t own the property, but we do still have the lease rights. Imagine what my grandparents would have given up back in 1952 after they were nearly flooded out if they had decided that “it just wasn’t worth it” anymore and walked away.

Deb

February 25th, 2011
10:09 am

I lost my job in 2009 and have been trying to get our Mortgage Co. to work with us. They did lower our payments last year and we have been trying to get a loan mod. For months they just jerked us around and did nothing to help us with a loan mod. Then last November we went to the Housing Authority and submitted paperwork again (for the third time total.) Now they are trying to get us a loan mod, however, they have yet to convince our Mortgage Co. to give us one. When I go online it states we are still in “review”. So we don’t know how long it should take but we’ve been trying for over 19 mos. to get a resolution. Not sure what the trick is, or what you have to do to get them to give a Loan Mod. We do not want to lose our house, since we worked very hard to buy it to begin with. We are in our fifties and it’s a little late to try and start over now. We are keeping the faith that our LM will come through, however, still frustrated in GA!

td

February 25th, 2011
10:11 am

How did the banks force people to buy houses they could not afford? If one makes $50,000 per year then they can not afford a $250,000 home. I have seen way to many people making between 50 and $70,000 per year buying $300,000 to $400,000 home and buying $40,000 care.

One should never buy something that takes more than half their pay checks and everyone should buy a house with the mentality that they are going to live in it for at least 30 years. Houses are long term investments not something you can change and move every 3 to 5 years.

Ghostrider

February 25th, 2011
10:25 am

@ Deb

Who’s your Mortage with ? I went through a Mod. Last year and it took 19 months, But it was worth the wait my Int. went from 7.25 to 3.125…daved me $400.00 Plus a month

Middle

February 25th, 2011
10:28 am

MissMin, your “ME” attitude is pathetic. Grow up and pay your mortgage like you agreed to do. If you walk away, you WILL regret it in the future.

Deb, there are so many more factors that go into modifying your loan. Banks and mortgage companies are now looking at everything you spend your money on. The details on your bank and credit card statements need to be clean, meaning you cannot go out and buy anything but the bare basics. Even a modest vacation or something like an XBox 360 can look like your not watching every penny. Also keep in mind they may not be able to do anything, their hands may be tied.

Agree with your posts Road Warrior. I am glad there are still people out their like me that still get it.

Folks, it is no where near being over. We have a long way to go and you cannot give up. Your financial future depends on it!

Middle

February 25th, 2011
10:36 am

“Houses are long term investments not something you can change and move every 3 to 5 years.”

That is a mindset we have to work with in this country. Migration played a huge part in why people were buying and selling so quickly. Large corporations and even small businesses moved people around like crazy in the part 10 years through promotions, etc.

People are not moving now. First, they can’t afford to because selling a home most likely takes a big loss. In most cases another job is not worth the financial risk. Companies will not pay for the bulk of relo like they used to and typically won’t consider someone that has to relocate (even with out a home to sell).

Our economy is so delicate right now because their are so many factors involved.

Gburdell20

February 25th, 2011
10:38 am

It’s great to have high morals, but when you get down to it, a mortgage is really a business transaction. The bank isn’t lending you $200,000 just to be nice. Over 30 years they are looking to make a pretty profit. Sometimes business deals do not go as planned….how many businesses have the high morals to pay all their creditors? Look at the number of buildings in downtown ATL are now bank owned. It is not surprising the “walk away” attitude has hit homeowners…it has been a staple in business for years.

BamaNative

February 25th, 2011
10:50 am

Greetings from Birmingham, Alabama!! My mother has a mortgage through Chase Bank – Formerly Washington Mutual. Last September, she lost her job with AT&T after 25 years of service. Since then, she has tried mercilessly to get her loan modified through Chase. She has submitted documents more than five times to Chase, who claims that they are not receiving the documents. It’s been one thing after another with this bank. I closed all of the accounts I had with them and urge others to do so and support your local credit union!

Hmm...

February 25th, 2011
10:53 am

There is no question that MILLIONS of US homedebtors have quit making the payments on their particle-board palaces. And more will follow. Americans are stupid and greedy, but stupid and greedy is a winning lottery ticket in the gangsta land. A few basics: a house is a place to live, not an investment vehicle or a retirement plan; a buyer can afford a house that is 2.5 times annual income; nobody owes you a thing if you bought more house than you can afford, except a swift hard kick for making the responsible people pay for the folly and fraud of idiot buyers, real estate fraudsters, and mortgage gangstas that are totally the cause of the problems. Mandatory sterilization should accompany a large percentage of these fraud resolutions.

No help from Bank of America

February 25th, 2011
11:08 am

I lost my job eight months ago. As of now, I am still current on my mortage but B of A is not interested in helping me stay current. I would have to get behind in payments before they will even talk to me. Being raised to pay what you owe, that is hard for me to even consider. I have friends that are in the same boat and they didn’t pay their mortage for a couple of months and sure enough the bank was willing to work with them. To me, that is just backwards

Middle

February 25th, 2011
11:14 am

@ Gburdell20

While what you said is true regarding big businesses and loans, a consumer defaulting on a mortgage has a quite different impact on them personally. An average individual with that mindset, comparing themselves to a big business, is in deep trouble.

The financial fallout on Average Joe and his future can be devastating. That is something that is not being reported on. If middle class America thinks they are going to be treated in the same resepcts as a big business when they walk way, they are in for a rude awakening. Their are many things that are going to change in this economy, that it not one of them.

John Q Public comparing their financial problems to the wealthy or big business is a grave mistake.

The Economy

February 25th, 2011
12:21 pm

Bottom line, you do what you have to do to survive, provide for your family. But lets be clear, if you get foreclosed or walk away, you should not be able to buy a home for 7 yrs!! This all started with the Government/WallSt making it to easy for people to buy, it only hurt the economy. OOOPS, there bad. 20% down, W2 income 2yrs, 720 credit scores, Assets, nothing less. If you dont meet those standards, you cant afford a home. No more self entitlement!!

lawyerdaggett

February 25th, 2011
12:23 pm

It is not true that you have to quit paying your mortgage in order to get loan modification assistance. You only have to show that default is reasonably foreseeable. Keep making your payments if you can and submit your paperwork to your bank seeking financial assistance. If you have to submit your paperwork three times, then do it. Remember, it shouldn’t be easy to get a mortgage loan in the first place. Therefore, it may not be easy to get your loan modified. Finally, if you think you are justified in walking away from your home and your mortgage because the big-bad-bankers screwed you, then think about your neighbor who is going to have to live next to an empty house after you are gone. When you walk away from your mortgage, you impact the value of your neighbors’ homes. Then YOU are part of the problem.

Cumberland Raised

February 25th, 2011
1:16 pm

Advise for all: Treat your house like a car or any other depreciating asset. A standard practice within the financial community is to pay down on depreciating assets. In other words pay off your house.

Kneel Borezt

February 25th, 2011
1:17 pm

My house is paid for. Compared to what most of you whiners “own,” it is a an old dump. However, I reiterate, it is paid for. So, I have little sympathy for the poor, pitiful debtors.

sage advice

February 25th, 2011
2:00 pm

@ Kneel

You sound more poor and pathetic than anyone else that has posted here. Sounds like your throwing yourself a pity party in your old dump as your post. Sorry that success passed you by long along. No sympathy for you here! :)

Suntrust is the worst

February 25th, 2011
2:58 pm

I lost my job in 2009 and was current on all my payments. I asked Suntrust for help because of the Obama “making home affordable” nightmare was offered. I went through 11 months of a 3 month trial period always paying on time. Then in November they just transferred my account to some company out in Texas reported me 6 months behind and walked away. Because Suntrust kept telling me to keep making “those trial payments” for 11 months it put my original note 6 months behind. Now the new company is offering to modify my loan and save me a $100 a month but now that 6 months of back payments will be tacked on to my principle. So now I will refinance my house for more than what I paid for it. My advice stay away from the Home Affordability trap. You come out worse than you started. Just try to hold on as long as you can then go for a short sale or something if you can’t keep up. Its not worth the hassle.

Kate

February 25th, 2011
3:48 pm

If you’re underwater on your house – really, why would you care?

The only time it becomes an issue is if you absolutely must move, for reasons beyond your control.

Otherwise it’s just a temporary situation.

At some point your house will begin to appreciate again. (Moderately. Except for the bubble and a few rare locations, housing has never appreciated faster than the overall inflation rate.)

In the meantime, you’re paying down principle every month. Eventually you’re going to own the home free and clear, whether or not any appreciation EVER happens. And that’s a very good position to be in.

Cleo

February 25th, 2011
4:36 pm

I’ve actually been pretty lucky with Wells Fargo, I’ve been facing foreclosure after six months not being able to make payments, they extended me on a three month program of very reduced payments for another three months now and threw in an extra month for (paperwork).

I’ve been on the phone with them a lot, and talk often to my processor and their supervisor. It was the supervisor during one of these talks that actually suggested the 3 month ext program that I didin’t even know about (it’s apparently a WF thing).

They’ve been quite open in saying they really want to keep me in my home as long as they can. They don’t want to take the hit on the books when the house gets devalued from my loan amount to whatever they wuold get on the courthouse steps. They also apparently hold a lot of mortgages in my area and they say they’re having to do everything they can to minimize foreclosures from devastating the value of their remaining loans in the area.

Babs

February 25th, 2011
4:43 pm

I have been without a job for over a year. My spouse is now working. We were trying to get a loan mod through the bank. It took over six months and a lot of haggling back and forth and then were told we did not qualify. The bank did forgo two payments so we could catch up.Needless to say, until the market improves we can’t refinance either in order to lower our interest rate. That is per the bank. The value has declined quite a bit yet the property tax has not declined. It is a nightmare for homeowners and there is no compassion from lenders during this troubled time.

iwalkedaway

February 25th, 2011
5:24 pm

I owned a house in Dekalb County, when i transferred because of my job I was faced with a decision. Rent the house and lose several hundred dollars a month, put the house on the market hoping at best to sale the house for $40,000 less than I owe, or purchase another house in my new city and walk away from the Dekalb house. When I did the math it was a no-brainer. I walked away and I don’t lose a moment’s sleep over it. The way I see it the bank and I entered into an agreement and they got their collateral back. Corporations do it all the time…it’s simply business.

Done

February 25th, 2011
5:35 pm

After my husband took a $30K paycut and my teacher furlough days we no longer can afford our house. After 22 years of spotless credit our credit is now ruined. Our house is worth 60,000 less than we paid for it 7 years ago. The roof needs replacing, the wiring needs to be redone in the wholes house, the AC went out and the plumbing is starting to leak in between the floors. YES, I am done – crappy house from a crappy builder.

Lost Home

February 25th, 2011
5:41 pm

Bama Native, I know what your mother is experiencing. For over a year I dealt with Chase trying to get a modification. I submitted paperwork several times just to hear them say “We didn’t receive the documentation”. When they finally found the paperwork, they put me on a trial modification program for 4 months just to say I didn’t qualify for any programs because I made too much money ($35k year say what). When I tried to apply for a repayment program, I was told to SELL because I didn’t make enough money. How do you go from too much to not enough and the money never changed. I then tried to do a short sale, but they wouldn’t allow me to sell the house for $95k so they foreclosed and sold for $55k. To put the icing on the cake they sent me a statement to claim $121k as income on my taxes. I was a single mom and was proud to have accomplished purchasing my first home. 5 years of payments for nothing. Tell your mom to hang on as long as she can.

Nat

February 25th, 2011
6:07 pm

I survived a modification last year after my husbands layoff, then he was laid off again. We both just gained new employment, and I got my dream job. Now, its off to bankruptcy court we go, just in time to save the house. I am NOT going down without a fight! Why should you work soo damn hard to get your house and then throw your hands up?

Dave The Optimist

February 25th, 2011
6:22 pm

Walk Away as soon as you can. Cut your losses. Never throw good money after bad. Spare yourself and your family. Do whatever it takes to preserve your future.

Hammond XK

February 25th, 2011
6:36 pm

I tried for 2 1/2 years went through all our saving while staying current when saving’s was gone
I was told I they would work with me I was out of work for almost 8 months found another job and wanted to try to catch up, the bank said no because of late fees etc. I would send a payment they sent it back
Dec 2010 I said screw it and walked they say they work with homeowners but that is BULL

So to you Mr. Paid Off What goes around comes around your the Dead Beat you heartless SOB

Jane Quatam

February 25th, 2011
6:38 pm

The economic collapse began in 2008, we are now in 2011 and foreclosures have still not bottomed out, nor have declining home prices reached their bottom. To say that strategic defaults are not significant is to fail to realize we aren’t in the 9th inning, we are more likely in only the 3rd or 4th. A few more years of declining home prices will place even more people underwater on their mortgages.

Mortgages are a secured debt. When someone defaults on a mortgage, the underlying asset becomes the property of the entity making the loan. It is not a moral issue it is financial, the banks show no morality, they care not whether a person is destitute, sick or dying, if the payment ain’t made you are foreclosed.

The mortgagee must likewise remain ruthless and walk away from the underwater liability that is dragging them to the bottom like a stone around their neck, BEFORE they squander all their savings or other assets in a vain and futile attempt at owning a piece of worthless property.

I own my home outright, but I hold no grudge against anyone who can put the screws to the banking system that is doing its best to destroy the taxpayers and its own customers.

Do what is right for you, the banks certainly don’t have your best interest at heart, assuming the slimeballs even have a heart.

The Untold Facts

February 25th, 2011
6:46 pm

“Walk Away as soon as you can. Cut your losses. Never throw good money after bad. Spare yourself and your family. Do whatever it takes to preserve your future.”

WHAT FUTURE? You and your family are ruined. Sure you can wait the 7 – 10 years and get another loan, but if you walk you are SUB PRIME (high interest rates) FOR LIFE. Even a auto loan will be outrageous.

Don’t believe what people are telling you – walking away, foreclosure or short sell will ruin you for LIFE unless you have extreme wealth to fall back on.

Sydgsu

February 25th, 2011
6:56 pm

Bamanative…with Chase the mod will never go through…they sold me to a competitor after 18 months…one who does not do refinances, one who does not do assumptions. I am screwed until I have 70,000 at hand…and my loan was for 246000!

GotHamp

February 25th, 2011
7:45 pm

Happy to say..I got a HAMP modification and was able to keep my home…luckily home values havent suffered to bad in my community..thanks to the HAMP mod I have no intention of leaving my home..I could never RENT for what I am paying now and especially since I am actually paying down the note..cut my payments in 1/2.

Helped my neighbor down the street get a HAMP mod too..they believe the same no reason to move!

FYI

February 25th, 2011
7:47 pm

For those telling people on this blog that their credit is ruined for 7 years is incorrect if they FILE BANKRUPTCY..according to FHA guidelines..in 24 months you can be BACK in a mortgage again..people who went BK in 2009 are headed back into a mortgage..some rented in the communities they lost homes in only to PURCHASE a home in the same community for a HUGE DISCOUNT…compared to the one they lost…

Rocco

February 25th, 2011
8:14 pm

I did a loan in 2004 for one millon, payment around $6,700 a month of which more than $5,000 is interest only. Around 84 months @ $5,000 the bank has made almost half of their investment back. In my dealing with the banks they will not hesitate to submit false paperwork to the courts. They want me to play by the rules, while they lie and conduct fraud. Don’t feel sorry for the banks for they have it almost like the casions. Always holding the winning hand. It may take me 7 to 10 years, but I am going to get to a place where I will not have to do business with the crooks NO MORE

X-Homeowner

February 25th, 2011
8:53 pm

I will never again buy a home unless I pay for it in full, with cash. Until you actually pay off the loan you are not a “homeowner” you are a “house sitter”, I have learned the banks can call your loan at any time and for any reason if they so chose, thanks to MERS.. GA is a Non-Judicial state so that means all foreclosures done in GA never get before a Judge. This makes it very easy for the banks to foreclose. Believe it or not, the banks make way more money with a foreclosure.

My story is much like the ones posted here. I purchased my home for 124,900.00 in 2001 (and no I did not buy more that I could afford) My husband lost his job due to the poor economy in late 2008. Even with his job loss I paid the mortgage on time each month with no problem. In June of 2010 I lost my job due to the economy w/o warning, notice or severance pay. I immdediately called my lender, Wells Fargo to advise them of the situation and tried to get a loan modification,. They wanted to do a “trial period” with me also. As I was making the very first of my “trial payments” I discovered that Wells Fargo had already filed an “assignment” with the Court to transfer the ownership of my property to them 10 days before my scheduled “trial payment” To make a long story very short after finding out this under-handed assignment which was made behind my back all the while telling me on the phone everything was fine. I then found out that “Wells Fargo” had started the foreclosure process on my home after I was only 30 days late, yeah, that is right 30 days. They sold my house on the courthouse steps on the first Tuesday in November, they sold it to themselves because nobody in their right mind would buy a property for 117,000.00 when it’s real value, in today’s market is worth approx. 60,000.00. What has happened since then is that they now have a property which has been vacant for 6 months, all pipes are busted by now and they have not yet, even put it up for sale. What is the loss to me? Well over 9 years I paid them 100K in cash, plus did 60K worth of repairs and upgrades, paid the insurance and taxes every year, so if you add it up this would equate to me paying rent to the tune of $1700.00 per month! The banks are making out good on their investments, so don’t feel sorry for them and God knows if you “walk away” don’t feel like the bank got the shaft, because they did not, they made a small fortune. I don’t ever want to buy another home unless I pay for it in cash. Bottom line, do what you have to do to take care of your family. Who even cares about your credit anymore, nobody is lending, period, so what does it matter? I have since moved to another state where there are jobs and I am renting. Perfect!

Frank

February 25th, 2011
9:31 pm

Divorced in 2008, ex-wife got the house. Still in both of our names. She kept it 60 mos behind for two years. Decided to give up in Nov, 2010, so she could afford a luxurious Christmas. Bank forclosed Feb. 1. Sold to Fannie Mae. Gave ex option to rent. She refused, and is bugging out, leaving the house to rot. Seems she fought for the wrong things because I got custody of my daughter and I live in a rented 150 year old dairy farm house. Also, the housing crisis could be a symptom of the marriage crisis in this country. Marriages that last are financially secure, not necessarily extravagant. We both had declared bankruptcy before the divorce. What does credit worthy mean anymore. Just save your money, spend what you have, and live within your means. Of course, that is not what the government wants you to do, they want you to be spenders and consumers to stimulate the economy. If everyone were careful, discriminant spenders of their hard earned resources in this country, we could not outpace the GDP of Italy, but is that what is really important anymore? Home ownership should not be the American Dream, because we do not own our homes outright anyway. It is an American Utopia, or something that the Greatest Generation achieved, but nobody else will have the same respect for the value of home ownership ever again.

paid off

February 26th, 2011
6:57 am

hamond your a deadbeat too

X-Homeowner

February 26th, 2011
7:56 am

Frank, very good post and so very true.