Thursday, April 27, 2006

US Hone Foreclosures On The Rise

US Home Foreclosures on The Rise

“Nationally, the number of mortgage loans that entered some stage of foreclosure rose to 117,259 in February, up 68% from the same month a year earlier, according to Irvine, Calif., online foreclosure-data service RealtyTrac. Delinquencies are up as well. Data provider LoanPerformance, a subsidiary of First American Real Estate Solutions, reported that 3% of the most vulnerable loans -- those made to borrowers with less than a stellar credit history -- were 90 days delinquent in February. That is up from 2.84% in February 2005. Meanwhile, 90-day delinquencies for loans made to borrowers with better credit were up to 0.76% in February, from 0.67% a year earlier. The rise in delinquencies isn't surprising, according to Doug Duncan, the Mortgage Bankers Association chief economist. In its own quarterly survey, for the fourth quarter of 2005, the association showed a 0.26 percentage point uptick in the rate of mortgage delinquencies as well as a 0.01 percentage point increase in the foreclosure rate from the third quarter.” By Danielle Reed From The Wall Street Journal Online

The corporate mind control apparatus’ job is to spew propaganda, disinformation, lies and to distract folks so we don’t know what’s really going on in this country and around the world. By now it is old hat the mainstream media served as cheerleaders and stenographers for the Bu$h administration as they lied the nation to an illegal and immoral war and an endless quagmire in Iraq. Contrast the lack of due diligence about Iraq and WMD with how the same media went after Bill “I did not have sex with that woman” Clinton during his second term. Clinton’s extramarital dalliances did not cause the deaths of thousands of innocent people, it did not impact US military personnel called upon to execute a discombobulated mission and occupation of a sovereign nation nor did Clinton’s lies throw the federal budget totally out of whack. Now while the corporate media are focused sports, the bogus immigration issue and the exact same deceit and scare tactics they used about Iraq this time with Iran, gas prices are going through the roof, inflation and interest rates are on the rise and as a result AmeriKKKans are falling further and further behind in their ability to keep up with the cost of living and pay their bills. “Consumer advocates and foreclosure analysts said several factors are driving up foreclosures. Among them are rising payments on adjustable-rate mortgages, high energy costs, job losses and higher required minimum credit-card payments. ‘Any one of them would be serious,’ said George Roddy, president of the Foreclosure Listing Service. He cited last year's changes to the federal bankruptcy law, which make filing for protection more difficult, as another possible factor. Before the change, he said, Texas homeowners often turned to bankruptcy protection to keep their homes out of foreclosure. The number of foreclosures started edging upward a few years ago after the layoffs in the telecom and airline industries. But foreclosures have continued to rise even as the economy has improved.”
Home foreclosures are on the rise in the US. More and more folks are seeing their dreams pulled from under them simply because they can no longer afford to pay their mortgages. The cost of living has risen steadily the last several years but real wages have remains stagnant. Couple this with the fact many households have over-extended themselves credit wise due to unusually low interest rates and the easy ability to borrow on the equity of their homes or purchase homes using non-conventional mortgages such as: Adjustable Rate Mortgages, no money down and interest only mortgages. Of course there are a myriad of additional reasons, such a media influence about real estate speculation being a great way to get rich, escalating housing appreciation (which has now slowed nation a wide), predatory lending practices which preys on people of color who tend not to have stellar credit histories nor a financial cushion when things get tough. Finally regional and national economic trends such as the mind-boggling national debt, rising interest rates and the recent increase in the money supply, which will cause even more inflation.
With the economy on shaky footing, the fears in the airline and auto industries about employment security and cutbacks coupled with the steady rise in gas prices and home heating oil prices; this puts an additional strain on family budgets. These times may warrant cutting back on your lifestyle or in some cases, if things get tight some people may be forced to miss a car payment or a mortgage payment or two. Once folks miss a payment or get behind in their mortgage payments it becomes a snowball effect. If you don’t have the money for one month’s mortgage, it is highly unlikely you will have it for two or three let alone five or six! The problem is many people don’t even contact the lender to try to work out a solution. “According to a recent survey by Freddie Mac and Roper Public Affairs and Media, a market research firm, more than half of the people who fall behind in their payments don't even try to work out a solution with their lenders. That head-in-the-sand attitude is one of the reasons the foreclosure rate climbed in every quarter of 2005, and why more than 846,000 American homes were in some stage of foreclosure last year, according to RealtyTrac, an online company that tracks foreclosures across the nation.” Lenders know when you miss a payment and they will attempt to contact you. If you fail to respond and also don’t pay your mortgage payment you are setting yourself up for more problems. The Freddie Mac survey also revealed, “The survey also shows that 61 percent of those interviewed said they did not know there were 'workout options' available through their mortgage companies that would help them get through their financial troubles. And 92 percent said they would have talked to their lenders had they known that ‘workout options’ existed. Every lender has ‘workout options,’ often referred to as loss mitigation or forbearance programs. They vary, depending upon the company and the reason you are late. For people going through a temporary, tough period, lenders will often set up an installment plan that lets borrowers repay past-due payments on top of the regular payment. In some cases lenders will refinance the entire loan, including the overdue amount, over a longer period. When finances are such that the homeowner will not be able to catch up, the lender can let the owner sell the house. When the house is sold and the loan is paid, any extra money is theirs to keep. In some cases the lender will let the homeowner sign the house over to them, skipping the cost, court time and embarrassment of a foreclosure. In these cases, it is often possible to negotiate a deal in which you do not have to repay the money you might still owe. So, even when homeowners do lose their homes, they can often do so without having a foreclosure on their credit reports for the next seven to 10 years, or carrying home-related debts with them.”
If you find yourself in this situation contact your lender, you may be able to work out something. If present trends continue, and the proverbial housing bubble bursts (and here are indications it may) more and more homeowners will find themselves in the precarious predicament of being forced to miss a mortgage payment, getting behind in their mortgage payments and facing possible foreclosure. With the changes in the personal bankruptcy laws it is not as easy to walk away from your debts and so it would behoove us to formulate strategies to reduce our debt, stop going for the advertising okie-doke, cut our spending and start saving where possible. The spike in foreclosures could be an ominous sign. Each family’s situation is different. I advise you to tighten your budgets so you avoid the threat and problem foreclosure.



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