This Makes Sense To Me!
I am not one to speak publicly, or voice my opinions at the local gin mill, or write down my personal views, feelings or opinions but I have finally reached my end. I am tired of the way we, "The Little People", have been, are being and appears will be treated by our government, law makers and big business in the future. Let's not forget our children and generations to come who will suffer if we don't do something to change our lives.
I remember attending elementary school were we started the day singing the National Anthem and reciting the Pledge of ALLIGENCE which even then, at that age, gave me a sense of pride, a sense of belonging to something. Of course at that age I wasn't able to understand the purpose for doing those rituals.
Later on in my years I found that I had very deep feelings for this country. As I learned about the great wars I would sit and think of all those men who gave their lives for their beliefs, their rights and their dreams of equality and freedom. I would listen to my father when he spoke of WWII which was very seldom. The infrequency of him verbalizing his experiences during WWII taught me the true meaning of war. I watched and listened to the men returning from the Vietnam Conflict. These men were now co-workers and I started feeling left out. I felt that I was not doing my part. I found myself a very patriotic individual who willingly and gratefully served this wonderful country on active duty for thirteen years.
I do not consider myself a complainer, a crier or a "woe's me" type of guy. If I were, I would be writing every day and visiting the gin mill often. This is what has happened to me, and millions of others, that for some reason you just don't hear about.
I purchased this condo in 2006 for about $192,000.00. The bank was very happy to except our application and money while giving us the assistance required to enable us to take advantage of the special new home owner offer. At the time I was employed making about $47,000.00 a year while working all the overtime I could get. This worked well and we love the location. Our payments, including association fees were about $1600.00 a month. I considered this an excellent deal since I had been living on a 37' boat for nearly seven years.
In 2007 this condo was valued at $212,000.00 and things were looking good. I should have sold the condo at this time but I like millions of others felt comfortable with the economy and housing market. Besides that, I was not allowed to sell this unit for FIVE YEARS or I would lose $11,000.00 in compliance with the requirements of the loan.
In 2008 this condo was valued at $170,000.00. Our thought about this was that a dip in the housing market was nothing new and in five years we would be able to sell for a profit if we wanted. Or at least break even. A person buys a house as a long term investment while providing the necessities for a normal, comfortable life. One hundred years ago a person bought or built a family home and was used by the family for generations. Today a home is just an investment. You can lose your home at any time, even if the loan is paid in full. Taking in account the income of "The Little People" and cost of housing you will probably never pay the home off anyway. I think we all know this.
In 2009 this condo was valued at $85,050.00 and I was laid off in October 2009. Once I found out what I would be getting from unemployment I decided to stop paying the mortgage payment so I could keep my credit cards, auto loan and a personnel loan current. I received phone calls from the mortgage company which is normal. I explained my situation to the mortgage company many times. I have never been out of work for more than two months in my entire life and have always found another job that paid more than the previous one. As a matter of fact, this is the first time I have ever drawn unemployment. I eventually wrote the hardship letter and filed the paper work required to MODIFY my loan figuring I would be employed in time to take advantage of the home loan modification programs. I was also asking myself, "Why would I continue paying $800.00 to $1200.00 a month for a condo that is now worth half of its original value or, in this case, even consider extending the loan?". This was not making any sense.
Meanwhile, we noticed other units going into foreclosure and short selling at $25,000.00 to $40,000.00 a unit. This told me that I, like thousands or even millions of others, were royally screwed.
The paper work for loan modification came back disapproved as it should have since I was still unemployed. Things like this I understand. The following options were given to help us stay in our home:
1. Formal or Informal Forbearance
2. Special Forbearance
3. Loan Modification
4. Partial Claim
Notice that there are no options that would compensate for a decrease in property value.
The mortgage company also gave me two options for foreclosure:
1. Short Sale - in which you would agree to sell your property and the proceeds of the sale would pay off your mortgage, even if the proceeds do not equal the full outstanding balance.
2. Deed in lieu of foreclosure - in which you would sign the deed to your property over to the lender (THE BANK) to avoid foreclosure. (walk away)
Now, why is it that the BANK is willing to sell the property to someone else for a fraction of its worth but won't let you buy or refinance the property for that same price. Listen, I am still trying to find employment with comparable wages in order to keep the condo and pay the present mortgage payment of $1500.00/month. What I am finding are jobs paying half of what I was making before. But, If the BANK would consider refinancing this condo for a short sale price I could take a job for $15.00 hr. and keep what I have been working for my entire life. This sounds reasonable to me. Why put families out in the street? Wouldn't this allow we "The Little People" to loosen our pockets a little and spend more to help the economy? Why won't they offer this option? I thought the BANKS were going to help "The Little People". After all, didn't the BANKS, WALL STREET and the GOVERNMENT cause this to happen to begin with? Politicians padding their pockets from lobbyist, Wall Street, Banks, Big Business .... Selfishness, Greed and Power.
Either way, the BANKS are taking a loss which I believe they will write off. I feel the BANKS can do this because the government will subsidize their losses, so, not only are we "The Little People" paying for their bail outs but we are also paying for their losses. The selfishness, greed and power of the BANKS will not allow themselves to fail. Mean while the wealthiest keep getting their bonuses and living fat and again we "The Little People" are paying their way.
I just received the 2010 proposed property tax notice and as of now this condo is valued at $29,940.00. If I take in consideration the $51,000.00 I have already paid the BANK in mortgage payments, nearly all of which is interest going into the BANKS pocket, I pretty much have this condo unit paid for.
This makes sense to me!
What about those who earn $200,000.00 or more annual income? Let them keep their current mortgages. They can afford it! They can pay their own wages. It seems to me that they are doing an excellent job of it all ready. They may even find it a little soothing to come back to earth. Less nose bleeds.