Dismissing Foreclosure Scandal is Not a Winning Hand

J Philip Faranda October 16, 2010

Max and his babies

When will we wake up and realize that cutting the banks slack is cutting our own throats? 

Inman News published a column today entitled “Robo Scandal” Lacks Substance, Victims. Craig Swan at Bloodhound Blog opines Foreclosuregate? A scandal? If you want to sue for damages, it behooves you to have suffered a real, actual, material injury. And lastly (but probably not for long) our fellow ‘Rainer Cody Hayworth offers the solution to the economy’s woes to be allowing banks to foreclose faster. If I have one more person repeat “Ya pay ya stay ya don’t ya won’t” I’ll kick my dog. Or barf. Maybe barf on my dog. 

Perhaps we’ve lost our minds, or our hearts, or both. Foreclosure is a capital case. It involves the death of a home. It should be treated as such, with no margin for error, and reverent respect for every detail. Why? Because someone’s home is involved, that’s why. Because someone’s kid may have to be yanked out of a special education class. Because someone may need to live near, or with, their 85-year old mother. Because a pet may have to go to a shelter. Because it is their MFing home, that’s why. 

You don’t need a little old lady with a paid off house getting erroneously foreclosed to find a victim. When a judge is handed 15 files for foreclosures with the same name signed in 12 different signatures, that’s bad. Sorry. Call me crazy. Due process is what makes this country what it is. Take that away and we are a banana republic. Are 99.9% of the people in foreclosure in default? Yes. 

But are 99.9% of people in foreclosure trying to live rent free? Hardly. I have had short sales get foreclosed on with the short sale in process because the bastards at the lender wouldn’t wait a few weeks. They never got as an REO what they would have gotten in the short sale. But they did it anyway. There are legions of people in America right now who fell behind on their payments who could probably resume paying but can’t cure their back payments. You mean to tell me a forbearance on the arrears is an inferior choice to foreclosing on them? Anyone who is trying to do the decent thing by their lender and is foreclosed on 30 seconds too soon is a victim. Period. 

If so-called “procedural laxities” thwart earnest efforts to modify or do a short sale, no denial of bad intent on the banks part absolves them of wrongdoing. We live in a society where mailing a mortgage check to the wrong PO box or making the check out with a typo can cause 6 months of abject hell on good, decent people who are left to fend for themselves to fix the problem with uncaring, monolithic banks and credit agencies who execute death by red tape. These same entities can’t be held to the lawful standards in their own paperwork filings? 

Seriously? 

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