Tag Archives: Mortgage crisis

New Bill Proposed to Help Homeowners With Foreclosure, Senator Al Franken (It Takes A Comedienne To Get The Job Done!)

” A Pale Green Mermaid Blog “

 

Senator Al Franken has proposed a new bill that would help homeowners navigate the foreclosure process with the focus on saving  homes from foreclosure.  The tenets are listed below,

 

FROM – The Huffington Post, www.huffingtonpost.com

Here’s a summary of the bill from Franken’s office:

When homeowners think that their mortgage servicer is breaking HAMP’s rules, has lost their paperwork, or has otherwise done something wrong, it’s very hard to figure out where to turn. They can call their servicer–but that often is a dead end. They can call the official hotline for homeowners at risk of foreclosure–but that only gets them to housing counselors who are working on a government contract and have no real authority to fix the problem or withhold servicer incentives. Homeowners who use their own lawyers or housing counselors to help them navigate HAMP often fare no better–lawyers report stories of contacting regulators about problems with the HAMP program, only to be told, “If the servicer says this is correct, it must be correct.”
SUMMARY

This amendment would address this problem, creating an Office of the Homeowner Advocate (OHA) modeled after the successful Office of the Taxpayer Advocate at IRS. OHA would be funded from money that is available for the costs of administering the HAMP program, but is not otherwise committed. OHA would:

* Have three primary functions:
o To assist homeowners, housing counselors, and housing lawyers in resolving problems with the HAMP program
o To identify areas (both individual and systemic) where homeowners, housing counselors, and housing lawyers are having problems in dealing with the HAMP program
o To identify possible administrative and legislative changes to HAMP
* Have an independent director, appointed by the Secretary of Treasury in consultation with the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. This director would have a background as an advocate for homeowners and have experience dealing with mortgage servicers. The director cannot have worked for a servicer or for the Treasury Department within the past four years.
* The Director of OHA will be available to testify in front of the Senate Banking Committee and House Committee on Financial Services at least four times a year, or at any time at the request of the Chairs of either committee, and will issue a formal report to Congress once a year.
* Staff designated by the Director would have the authority, on a case-by-case basis, to withhold incentives from servicers or require repayment of previously paid incentives.
* While a person is appealing their case through OHA, homes may not go to foreclosure sale until the OHA process is finished or 60 days have passed, whichever is shorter.

 

Banks foreclosed on 2.8 million homes in 2009, and the first quarter has already seen 932,000 filings — a 16 percent increase from the foreclosure pace at the beginning of last year.

Franken’s amendment would give homeowners someone to call when they’re having trouble with the bank servicing their mortgage. The homeowner advocate would be modeled on the well-regarded taxpayer’s advocate office within the IRS.

“What happens is that one of the problems is that the servicers or representatives who talk to people on the phone don’t seem to be expert as they might be. That’s sort of the problem that this is addressing,” he said. “Or they’re told you’re too late, or this form didn’t come in, or that, or we didn’t get this thing. Of course the person did send that thing. So there’s just a lot of people reporting kind of frustrating interactions with the servicers’ representatives.”

Franken said he’s heard too many stories of avoidable foreclosures. “That’s a disaster. That’s a tragedy. Someone’s home is their home. Each one of these foreclosures is a tragedy.”

 

This is a great idea  – Do your own research then let your congress person know how you feel.

 

www.congress.org

 

PEACE

Note:

Huffington post excerpts from article by Arthur DelaneyAl Franken Fighting For Homeowners’ Advocate “

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Poem -” Banks That Tank”

” A Pale Green Mermaid Blog “

  

BANKS THAT TANK

  

Banks that simply refuse to re-adjust

to lend some trust

on the general populace,

They need to be busted down to size (2-4% of GNP)

landing a big surprise

when they realize

it ain’t a sin

to take it on the chin

and re-adjust ( some mortgages) before we bust!

 Pinata –

What is a piñata?:

A piñata is a figure, usually made from a clay pot covered with paper mache and decorated in bright colors, with candy and fruit inside. At parties piñatas are suspended from a rope and children, usually blind-folded, take turns hitting it with a stick until it breaks and the candy falls out onto the ground and the children rush to collect it. Breaking the piñata is a fun activity at Mexican parties.

From About.com
 

 

Peace

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Friendship Is The Key To Saving Our Democracy From Becoming Frozen In Opposing Views

 ” A Pale Green Mermaid Blog “

 

” Friendship is the mutually cooperative and supportive behavior between two or more people. In this sense, the term connotes a relationship which involves mutual knowledge, esteem, affection, and respect along with a degree of rendering service to friends in times of need or crisis” From Wikipedia

 

Friends have disagreements- friends argue ideas- friends yell at one another- friends cover each other’s back -FRIENDS TALK NO MATTER WHAT and 

they come together, in the end.

That is what we need in congress again.  The late Senator Ted Kennedy and Orin Hatch are two good examples of this  process as attested to in the inspiring and incisive memorial that Senator Hatch  gave at Senator Kennedy’s viewing.

It is the key to having a productive discussion and creating legislation between the differing opinions of this large nation.

Let’s demand that our legislators democrat and especially republican do the job we are paying them to do, work together and find solutions to the problems in this country – If you have no new ideas and can’t be a “friend” then get out of the way (and the congress)

 

Peace      and start talking and producing legislation ! 

Bill co-sponsors Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, and Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., before signing the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act AP Photograph

 

Written By Orin Hatch from Article on www.politico.com

America has lost a giant in politics and public policy. I have lost a close personal friend.

 

People called us the “odd couple,” which was certainly true. There are few men with whom I had less in common. Ted was born to a famous patrician family of Boston. He attended private schools and Harvard University. He was politically liberal, and liberal in his lifestyle – at least until he married Vicki Reggie, who set him straight. I grew up in a poor, working class family in Pittsburgh. Where Ted was the affable Irishman, I was the teetotaling Mormon missionary.

 

We did not agree on much, and more often than not, I was trying to derail whatever big government scheme he had just concocted. And, in those years that Republicans held the majority in the Senate, when it came to getting some of our ideas passed into law, he was not just a stone in the road, he was a boulder.

 

Disagreements over policy, however, were never personal with Ted. I recall a debate over increasing the minimum wage. Ted had launched into one of his patented histrionic speeches, the kind where he flailed his arms and got red in the face, spewing all sorts of red meat liberal rhetoric. When he finished, he stepped over to the minority side of the Senate chamber, put his arm around my shoulder, and said with a laugh and a grin, “How was that, Orrin?”

 

We did manage to forge partnerships on key legislation, such as the Ryan White AIDS Care Act, State Children’s Health Insurance Program, and most recently, the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act. Ted was a lion among liberals, but he was also a constructive and shrewd lawmaker. He never lost sight of the big picture and was willing to compromise on certain provisions in order to move forward on issues he believed important. And, perhaps most importantly, he always kept his word. When our carefully balanced compromise legislation came to the Senate floor, Ted often had to lead the opposition to amendments offered by Democratic colleagues that he would rather have supported. But, he took the integrity of our agreement seriously and protected the negotiated package.

And, when my mother and father died – times of deep sorrow for me – Ted Kennedy was there with the right words and sincere sympathy. Ted was a man experienced in facing tragedy, having grieved more than his share, and yet became stronger for it. He and Vicki flew to Utah to attend my mother’s funeral, a gesture that will always mean a great deal to me.

 

We can all take a lesson from Ted’s 47 years of service and accomplishment. I hope that America’s ideological opposites in Congress, on the airwaves, in cyberspace, and in the public square will learn that being faithful to a political party or a philosophical view does not preclude civility, or even friendships, with those on the other side.

 

When reflecting on my dear friend’s life, my thoughts continue to turn to the future of this great nation. With the loss of such a liberal legislative powerhouse who spoke with conviction for his side of the aisle but who was always willing to look at an issue and find a way to negotiate a bipartisan deal, I fear that Washington has become too bitterly partisan. I hope that Americans in general and Washington politicians in particular will take a lesson from Ted’s life and realize that we must aggressively advocate for our positions but realize that in the end, we have to put aside political pandering, work together and do what is best for America.

 

Personally, I mourn the loss of my dear friend Ted Kennedy. I will miss sparring with him over policy, his unparalleled skills as a legislator, his wonderful sense of humor, and his generous nature. And Americans from all points on the political spectrum can surely admire the example of a United States senator who was dedicated to the last to advancing the vision of America that he held so dearly.

 

Sen. Orrin Hatch, a Republican, is the senior senator from Utah.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0809/26482_Page2.html#ixzz0Rl4Y1deo

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Cozy Cocktails For Job Hunters / Shanghai Happy Hour

“A Pale Green Mermaid Blog Happy Hour”

 

After a long day of beating the pavement, or keyboard as it were looking for that elusve  job, kick you shoes off and  give yourself a happy hour.

 

Below is a cocktail I created last night!  Take one part gin, 4 parts water – pour over ice, drop 2-3 peppermint candies into the drink. one red straw, stir till pink/ place a yorke peppermint patty at the base of the drink and serve!

(Yorke patty is to be eaten after the cocktail is gone!)

A typical cocktail, served in a cocktail glass.

A cocktail is a style of mixed drink. Originally a mixture of distilled spirits, sugar, water, and bitters,[1] 

Note: Origin

The term originated in the United States Navy. In the 1920s, “happy hour” was slang for on-ship performances. “Happy” in this context meant slightly drunk.[citation needed]

The idea of drinking before dinner has its roots in the Prohibition era. When the 18th Amendment and the Volstead Act were passed banning alcohol consumption, citizens would host “cocktail hours”, also known as “happy hours”, at a speakeasy (an illegal drinking establishment) before eating at restaurants where alcohol could not be served. Cocktail lounges continued the trend of drinking before dinner. “Happy hour” entered civilian use around 1960, especially after a Saturday Evening Post article in 1959.

from Wikipedia

***FDR had cocktails as a regular activity while he was in the White House during the depression.

 

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Dollar Store Tip!

” A Pale Green Mermaid Blog “

 

This  is a new series of sporadic DOLLAR store tips, Whenever I come across a great product I will pass it along to you, my readers, your there aren’t you?

So here is the first tip ,

 

Anyone who likes body wash ( I use it just the same for bubble bath)  They are selling a  nifty new brand called, 

Perfect Purity 

18 oz  (which is a good amount, not your puny squeeze bottle that lasts 3 bubble baths-  did I say I LIKE BUBBLES!)

The flavors are Lemon Grass Grapefruit or Pomegranate Mango.  

Ooooo la la and the wash keeps it’s bubbles not like some brands where you toss it in the tub, leave  to let the tub fill up and by the time you return your back to plain old unexciting water!

So to recap 18 oz, great scents, bubbles everywhere aaaaaaand one, uno, single DOLLAR!   

Have a great Monday!

 

www.dollartree.com 

You can buy online  but it is more fun to look around! Dollar Tree seems to have taken over many of the smaller chains but if there is no Dollar Tree near you just stop by the local one!

 

 

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Saturday Night Flash Story “Micro – Moo”

“A Pale Green Mermaid  With Irridescent Scales And White Feathered Wings  Blog

 

MICRO – MOO

 

Theresa  pressed the final disconnect on her five way conference call.  She sipped the recently delivered mocha-lime frappe.

“Miss Upland.”

Turning she saw Featherstone.  Leland Featherstone.  The big cheese.  The boss of bosses.  She stared at him with her mouth agape.

” Wipe that froth off your lips Miss Upland.  I want to talk to you in my office.  Now!”  He turned knocking over a freshly alphabetized  set of files.

Theresa gazed at his departing figure and decided to take another sip making sure just a fluff of froth remained on her lip.  She stood up, straightened her satin plum suit and walked slowly to Mr. Featherstone’s green office door.

Mr. Featherstone’s office was located at the end of a yellow hallway where, periodically, red overhead light fixtures cascaded pools of pale mauve fluorescent light.  Her orange fake snakeskin boots clicked their way, Armageddon like , to her destiny.  Walking swiftly she tripped, rip went the edge of her skirt which had attached itself to the wall – her body continued its tumultuous trajectory, finally slamming against Mr. Featherstone’s office door.

The door made a small creak,then drifted open.  Theresa peered around the corner as she pulled up the netting of her fuchsia colored fishnet stockings.

Mr. Featherstone glanced back at her.  She straightened her skirt  and focused her discombobulation.

” You really need to fix that loose piece of tile ,” she said staring at the well polished gleaming floor.

” Close the door Miss Upland, and try not to cause anymore destruction.”

Theresa pulled the gold knob snapping the door behind her.  Mr. Featherstone absentmindedly gestured to the purple chair opposite his grey desk.

” As you know Miss Upland.”

” Ms. Upland, if you please.” 

” Let’s not start that again… now, there has been some, how shall I say this…”

” Please be frank Mr Featherstone,”  said Theresa still adjusting  her homemade couture.

“Allright, Mr. Shaumbaum believes you have been pilfering Micro- moos.”

” Micro- who?”  Theresa said moving uncomfortably in her chair.

” Micro- moos.”  Mr Feathertone said abruptly.

”  You are going to have to be clearer – please, relate to me the whole allegation.”

”  Mr. Shaumbaum has let me know we have a deficit, a rather large one of Micro-moos…the creamer packets…in the staff kitchen.”  He blurted.

” Oh.”

”  He has made an allegation and I must respond.  Now, we cannot let this fester, first a moo then a…”

”  But Mr. Featherstone, I don’t even  use Micro-moos as you call them, I send out for my…”

” Now Miss Upland, an accusation has been officially and as I said, made by a credible source and I as supervisor must respond.  So you are, as of today, on restricted access to the Micro-moo container – until – we see if the drain continues.”

” But…”

”  Dismissed Miss Upland.”

She reminded herself of her new motto, “Do not fight stupid fights”, so she shrugged her shoulders and said.  ” I reiterate I am Micro-moo free.”

Mr Featherstone waved her off.

She closed the door behind her mumbling, ”  The indignities that one must endure to earn a paltry paycheck.”  She was determined not to allow this Micro-moo gate incident  to cast a cloud over what was otherwise a minimally annoying day.

She clicked back down the hallway.

“Pssst…Theresa…Pssst.”   The office door of Henrietta Bogel, executive assistant, was halfway open.  A hand gestured for Theresa to come inside.  The beckoning finger clutched in its palm a cluster of Micro-moos.

She stopped, looking side to side, thinking – I don’t want to get further involved in this Micro-moo gate, but she was intrigued.   She straightened her jacket and walked inside.

It was Henrietta attached to those Micro-moos.  ” Shhhh. ”  Henrietta said, pressing her face inches from Theresa’s chin.  ”  They suspect you?  Good, by the time they figure out what is happening I’ll be in South America.”

”  Henrietta what is all of this about you don’t even drink coffee, if I remember correctly.”

” Forget that, It is superfluous, don’t you understand – don’t you see?”

” Henrietta…”

” It is the principal of the thing.  I’ve been here for thirty years yet , after my retirement party I received a notice – I wasn’t even told in person. ”  Henrietta opened the drawer of her desk file cabinet and tossed the creamers in.  Theresa watched as she struggled to close the drawer, jamming the edges of the moos behind the metal plate, quickly she sealed the drawer with tape.

” So you are the one…”  Theresa held the side of her forehead.

” Clam up Upland, and listen.  I will be getting eighty percent of my pension – eighty percent.”

” But Henrietta, how are non dairy creamers involved in this?”

”  I am going to drive Featherstone crazy.  I have two weeks left.  I am striking back.  No, I say no Micro-moos will be available for Featherstone’s morning cup of java, not while I am still here.”  Henrietta thrust her freckled finger in the air.  ” Power to the…”

Theresa slinked around Henrietta and quickly exited.

As she walked down the hallway she thought about life, death and the meaning of Micro-moos.

 

THE END

 

PEACE  

BJHC 

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Saving Pennies Using Ethnic Markets And Produce Junctions

“A Pale Green Mermaid Blog”

One way that I save money and have some fun is browsing “ethnic” markets.  Now when I say “ethnic markets” I mean a market that caters to a specific clientele such as Asian , Hispanic, Russian etc.  What I have noticed is that they tend to keep the prices down and fruits or veggies in their markets and are usually better quality (fresher).

The fun element comes when you try something that you never tasted before like octopus fritters or the numerous homemade noodles in the Asian markets or the desserts offered at Russian markets, they are quite a treat!  You get to understand a culture in some way by eating their food.

The other place to get loads of fresh and interesting  green stuff are the produce outlets or junctions that you pass on the road, there is one near where I live where you can not only get 2 romaine lettuce heads for 1 dollar,1 bag of oranges for a dollar …etcetera…

( I am beginning to see a pattern here… in these posts… I am obsessed with buying things that cost one dollar !!! I suppose that it stems from when I use to go upstate in Penna and visit lake Nuangola when I was young.   If you walked around the lake through the swamp, complete with missing planks on the walkway that covered the deep green muck teeming with frogs, turtles, dragonflies and at night the dive bombing bats, yes bats!  Well, if you made it through the swamp and walked up the hill, at the top was the… 

PENNY CANDY store! that’s right all the candy was one-uno -single -penny!!

I realize as I am writing this post my obsession with bargains must have been engendered as I walked back over the swamp, the setting sun tinting everything orange and my shorts ladened with pockets full of penny candy…

So check out your local produce provider they skip the middle man and the middle man’s profit, creating a deal for you!

 

PEACE  

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Filed under Economy, Fat Cat Skinny Cat Musings, Life

If the Banks Are Too Big To Fail: Let’s Bust Some Trusts

“A Pale Green Mermaid Blog”

 

If the banks that caused this crisis by selling and making a profit  on flawed mortgage backed investments products are too big to fail, as President Obama has said, perhaps it is time to break up some of these banking monopolies (i.e. trusts).

Trusts are large corporate entities that end up having too much control over the market. (see below).  

Certainly the fact that the bad decisions that the big investment banks and insurers made, have the market careening downward  – while we (the general public) wait for  them, to clean up the mess proves that these corporations have far too much leverage in the market.

The only reason that the government is afraid to lay the law down to these corporations is that the products created,  need  the perpetrator excuse me, the creator of the product to untangle and neutralize their effect on the market.

It is time to bust some trusts!  No one in a democracy should have the power/opportunity to devastate the national/global markets.

 

Write congress and request that a thorough investigation be made into how the current conglomerations of financial institutions effected the  crisis we are in.

 

Peace

www.congress.org

Note: Trust-busting is any government activity designed to break up trusts or monopolies. Theodore Roosevelt is the U.S. president most associated with dissolving trusts. However, William Howard Taft signed twice as much trust-busting legislation during his presidency.

Trusts were large business entities that largely succeeded in controlling a market, essentially becoming a monopoly. The term became common in the late 19th century, when a system of trusts controlled much of the economy of the United States. In 1898, President William McKinley launched the “saw-busting” era when he appointed the U.S. Industrial Commission on Trusts, which interrogated Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, Charles M. Schwab, and other industrial titans. The report of the Industrial Commission was seized upon by Theodore Roosevelt, who became known as a “Trust-Regulator,” dissolving 44 trusts during his two terms as president. The “Trust Buster” name is probably more suited for Roosevelt’s successor, William Howard Taft, who brought an end to 90 trusts in one term. Although Taft may have done more to control the trusts while in office, Roosevelt retains the nickname because he was the pioneer of trust-busting.    From Wikipedia

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Protect Yourself From Predatory Lending, Here Are A Few Tips!

“A Pale Green MermaidBlog”

Since the government is in transition and the banks are not necessarily acting in a fair manner educate yourself to protect yourself!

Common Abuses:
Seven Signs of Predatory Lending

from www.responsiblelending.org

Predatory mortgage lending involves a wide array of abusive practices. Here are brief descriptions of some of the most common.

  1. Excessive Fees
  2. Abusive Prepayment Penalties
  3. Kickbacks to Brokers (Yield Spread Premiums)
  4. Loan Flipping
  5. Unnecessary Products
  6. Mandatory Arbitration
  7. Steering & Targeting

Excessive fees

Points and fees are costs not directly reflected in interest rates. Because these costs can be financed, they are easy to disguise or downplay. On competitive loans, fees below 1% of the loan amount are typical. On predatory loans, fees totaling more than 5% of the loan amount are common.

Abusive prepayment penalties

Borrowers with higher-interest subprime loans have a strong incentive to refinance as soon as their credit improves. However, up to 80% of all subprime mortgages carry a prepayment penalty — a fee for paying off a loan early. An abusive prepayment penalty typically is effective more than three years and/or costs more than six months’ interest. In the prime market, only about 2% of home loans carry prepayment penalties of any length.
>> More about prepayment penalties…

Kickbacks to brokers (yield spread premiums)

When brokers deliver a loan with an inflated interest rate (i.e., higher than the rate acceptable to the lender), the lender often pays a “yield spread premium” — a kickback for making the loan more costly to the borrower.
>> More about yield spread premiums…

Loan flipping

A lender “flips” a borrower by refinancing a loan to generate fee income without providing any net tangible benefit to the borrower. Flipping can quickly drain borrower equity and increase monthly payments — sometimes on homes that had previously been owned free of debt.

Unnecessary products

Sometimes borrowers may pay more than necessary because lenders sell and finance unnecessary insurance or other products along with the loan.

Mandatory arbitration

Some loan contracts require “mandatory arbitration,” meaning that the borrowers are not allowed to seek legal remedies in a court if they find that their home is threatened by loans with illegal or abusive terms. Mandatory arbitration makes it much less likely that borrowers will receive fair and appropriate remedies in cases of wrongdoing.
>> More about mandatory arbitration…

Steering & Targeting

Predatory lenders may steer borrowers into subprime mortgages, even when the borrowers could qualify for a mainstream loan.Vulnerable borrowers may be subjected to aggressive sales tactics and sometimes outright fraud. Fannie Mae has estimated that up to half of borrowers with subprime mortgages could have qualified for loans with better terms.

According to a government study, over half (51%) of refinance mortgages in predominantly African-American neighborhoods are subprime loans, compared to only 9% of refinances in predominantly white neighborhoods.

 

Loan Closing Checklist     From  www.Seattle.gov

Before Signing Day

  • Contact the Escrow Agent and request copies of your completed documents at least 1 day before your appointment to sign your loan papers.
  • Visit a local housing counselor, attorney or a trusted family member or friend to review all documents. Make sure you understand all the terms of the loan.
  • Check your Promissory Note:
    • Is the interest rate correct?
    • What is the term of the loan (30 years, 20 years or 15 years)?
    • Is there a Prepayment Penalty? Is there a Balloon Payment? If you are unsure of the impact of these features, talk to a lawyer or non-profit housing agency.
    • If your loan is an Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM), you should receive an ARM disclosure or Rider. Review this document. Make sure you understand how often your rate can increase, how much your payment can increase when the rate goes up, and what the maximum interest rate and the maximum monthly payment are.
  • Review your HUD-1 Settlement Statement:
    • Verify all fees. Be sure each fee on the HUD-1 also appears on the Good Faith Estimate. There should be no surprises at this late stage. If the fees are substantially different, do not sign any documents unless you agree with the new terms.
  • If you are refinancing, what is the check amount you will receive? Is it the amount that you were expecting? All debts that you planned to pay off should be listed, along with the amounts that will be mailed to creditors.
  • If a broker is involved, is he charging anything other than a broker fee? (For example, is he also charging a processing fee, an underwriting fee, or other kind of fee that you were unaware of?)
  • Is there a yield spread premium (YSP)*? Be sure to ask your escrow agent even if you don’t see one. YSP’s sometimes are hard to spot on the HUD-1.

    * Yield Spread Premiums are fees that lenders pay to mortgage brokers when they sell you a higher interest rate. Do you see a YSP on your HUD-1 settlement statement? If so, you may not be receiving the lowest interest rate that was available to you.

At the Signing Appointment

Check the figures on the Promissory Note and the HUD-1 that you are about to sign. Do they match the documents you received earlier from the Escrow Agent? If any terms are different, do not sign unless you agree with these new terms.

Before you leave your Signing Appointment

Be sure you receive copies of each of the following signed documents upon leaving the signing appointment:

  • Note
  • Deed of Trust
  • Estimated HUD-1 Settlement Statement. (You should receive your final HUD-1 a day or two after your loan closes)
  • Truth in Lending Disclosure
  • Servicing Disclosure
  • Insurance Disclosure (If you purchased any insurance products from the lender);
  • *3-Day Right to Cancel (For refinance or equity loans only).

*Remember: You have 3 days to change your mind after you sign your loan documents for a refinance or equity loan. If you decide you do not want the loan within this 3-day “recission” period, you can simply walk away. Just give a signed copy of the “Notice to Cancel” to your lender. You can find this document among your closing papers.

Within 1 week of signing your loan documents, you should receive a final HUD-1 Settlement Statement in the mail. If you do not receive this information, contact your escrow agent immediately. This document is your official accounting of all monies paid into escrow and distributed.

Be sure to request a copy of the following items from your lender:

  • Your credit report
  • Your property appraisal

All these documents make up your Personal Loan File. Keep these together with all other items relating to your new loan in a safe place.

PEACE

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Key to Ending The Alice In Wonderland Tumble Down This Economic Rabbit (Rat) Hole!

“A Pale Green Mermaid Blog”

 

Confidence… thrives on honesty, on honor, on the sacredness of obligations, on faithful protection and on unselfish performance. Without them it cannot live.
Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

The anger from the public reflects the lack of cash for the bottom 2/3 of the market, banks are hoarding the bailout money refusing to lend and the servicers (who work for the banks) are overall refusing to refinance the mountain of  mortgages caught up in the credit swap/ subprime mortgage financial crisis.

If we keep bailing out the banks and they continue to be zombie banks – not lending to the public, all that will be left standing will be a bunch of banks with no one to lend to.

 

1. One answer is the Obama plan to open a government bank that will start lending to the public and let the banks that are not financially viable go into bankruptcy and restructure.  No further bailouts.

2. the other answer is to force the “servicers” ( people who are the middle person between the investors and the mortgage owners – who got involved in the predatory  loan productsto refinance and take the loss for the mortgages that are in crisis,

they could use a standard of offering a 5% mortgage and payments of 1/3 the owners yearly salary.  All who could meet that standard would get a refinance.

Peace and good luck to us all!

 

 

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170 Billion to AIG – Where Did It Go? Transparency Should Be Demanded For All Bailout Money.

“A Pale Green Mermaid Blog”

The deals made by President Bush concerning how the TARP  bailout money would be used, should be rescinded. 

On great example is AIG the taxpayers own 80% of the preferred stock of AIG yet we (the government) has no say over how the bailout money is being spent or transparency as to how and when AIG will be able to repay the bailout money.

If the government bails out a company all the money should be open to review by the congress and rules should be set set prior to giving the bailout as to how the money can be used and if the money is spent outside those rules it must be returned.

If the contracts of the auto workers can be renegotiated through pressure from congress and the public, then contracts of AIG employees that include large bonuses can be renegotiated.

So write your congress person and as President Roosevelt said to a group of protesters during the depression ” That’s a great idea …now make me do it.”

Your voice does matter, honestly it is essential.  

Peace 

Note:      www.congress.org

 

 

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The Chicken Or The Egg Which Came First? The “Toxic Assets” or the “New Investment Instruments ” Who Should Be Blamed?

“A Pale Green Mermaid Blog”

 

I could be wrong,  but as far as I can see  from what I have read and heard ,

it is the so called “New Instruments ” ( investment products that were sold to the public by banks) that are the problem,

because they have produced the ever popular “Toxic Assets ” which no one wants to buy,

Now the toxic assets are investment products that are no longer producing  income

now why aren’t they producing income?  because the new investment products used for collateral, mortgages,

but they sold mortgages to people using predatory lending practices as used by credit cards, these practices we are all familiar with, one mistake and your payments balloon  and there are fines and fees all over the place.

then they stuffed all these  mortgages, sometimes 200 , into the  new investment products

 

1.these investment products were not regulated by the Bush administration, they ignored rules on the books at the time, and also loosened existing lending practices .

2. A ponzi like scheme was produced where everything worked so long as the banks could keep selling the products to investors.( and with the lax lending regulations it was endless)

3. when the housing bubble broke, as the banks knew it would, the scheme fell apart

4. as home owners started missing payment their fees and monthly payments skyrocketed

 

but instead of refinancing the mortgages at a lower rate that the owners could afford the banks refused and are still refusing to accept the lower income from the new instruments, they would prefer to be bailed out by the government .

The big investment banks created the faulty investment products and should take the hit for selling the public risky investments.

 

they should start refinancing the mortgages for all who can afford to pay 1/3 of their income in monthly payments, so owners can retain their houses. ( this will slow if not stop the downward spiral we are in)

Currently the large investment banks are refusing to lend or refinance except in a few circumstances.

The chicken or the egg? I think it is the chicken i.e. the NEW BANKING INSTRUMENTS that caused the problem – these practices should be outlawed.

 

Saving the homes of our fellow citizens is the first step in what will be a long process… a commentator on NPR said there are not millions of theses toxic assets but trillions!

 

As Sheila Bear said  “it’s the mortgages stupid.”

 

Let’s hope for some Peace and economic justice.

 

Note: Sheila Bear , F.D.I.C .Chairman

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Dust Bowl Economics Revisited: Where was Bush When the Winds Began Blowing?

“A Pale Green Mermaid Blog”

In the  1930’s and 40’s during the ‘great” depression as opposed to the “lousy “depression we are in now (I decided to name it since most people still refer to it as still a recession: WAKE UP, IT IS A DEPRESSION) there was an area of the country they called the dust bowl because the land had dried up and the ensuing winds and dust drove farming families out from their homes,  it was partly caused by bad government policies and land speculators..Sound familiar.

It appears to me that the same thing is happening now but it is the swirl of foreclosures not dust driving the population out on to the street.

About a year ago houses in my neighborhood started dropping like flies, for sale signs popping up all over the place and now  – the jobs are disappearing,  in a downward spiral. 

This isn’t a bunch of greedy people borrowing money they can’t pay back , they were sold

refinancing packages similar to predatory lending practices that the credit card companies are allowed to use, except this time you lose your house if you miss a payment. 

Currently:

One in 10 homeowners are not given the opportunity to refinance their mortgage loan if they get into trouble.

1 in 6 houses across the country are in some state of foreclosure.

The economic engine of this country ( the bottom 2/3 of the population) is being starved by the fat cat policies of the Bush administration (which are still in place) who gave a big fat cat check of 350 billion not million, BILLION to the investment banks and they in turn were suppose to start lending to us, the skinny cats.

They did not.   

If that 350 BILLION, not million had been given to the skinny cats it would already be circulating in the economy because we , the skinny cats, have to spend it to survive.

So a possible solution…

(Skinny cat, bubble up economic policies need to be the chant of the day.)

 

 1.  Put in place a moratorium on all foreclosures for 6-12 months.  (In that time refinance all the mortgages that can be refinanced, at a lower affordable rate .  The problem the big banks are having is with the so called “toxic” loans, if the loans are no longer ” toxic ” and are paying a return, albeit a lower rate , the need to prop up the banks should lessen)

2.  Put Some TARP money into the  small banks so they can lend immediately. ( they are lending even now because they were not involved in the mortgage bundling schemes that the larger banks made money off of.)

3.  Rescind the Bush tax cuts for the top 2 percent and give those tax cuts to the bottom 2/3 of the economy.  (IE. the economic engine – the skinny cats! we know how to spend it and invest it)

We need to do this now , not in a month, now…

So skinny cats unite, let us raise our voices up to the big whigs in the congress and tell them the time  to move was YESTERDAY – at least we have Obama on our team now…

so call congress and create some skinny cat peace of mind!

TEAM SKINNY CAT… GO!!!     Obama, Obama, Obama Obaaaaaama!

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