Monday, December 31, 2007

Hahn Family

Hahn Family (Jeff, Vanessa, Jonah); House "Buyers" / "Owners"
Yet another family featured by the San Francisco Chronicle. I'm not sure if we're supposed to feel sorry for these people. After you read the stories you invariably say, "What?", "Huh", "Nobody is that stupid." There were many comments at the Chronicle in response to this story, but I stopped after the second one. Here it is:
sfbaylover wrote:
Let me get this straight... Two grown adults can make the largest - most important purchase of their lives which is a home. You purchase a home that you clearly COULD not afford at 100% financing. But that was not enough - as you compound the sutation with a line of equity for a business loan. Did you even take a moment to do the math OR READ YOUR LOAN PAPERS? You must have - right? You signed and had your paperwork notorized, right? and now that you have lost your house and have almost $20K in credit card bills, you move into a $2,700 a month RENTAL. You clearly have not learned a SINGLE lesson. WHY not move into an AFFORDABLE rental, in a city that you can afford. YOU ARE NOT ENTITLED, YOU ARE supposed to be RESPONSIBLE. You are a VICTIM of your own actions, and clearly you are still making the wrong decisions. Leave California and live in a place that can offer you an affordable standard of living. NO MORE EXCUSES- grow UP !

2007-12-31: MORTGAGE MELTDOWN: The Hahn family
Jeffrey Hahn, 31, car-parts importer; Vanessa Hahn, 24, gymnastics coach, and Jonah, 2
House: Four-bedroom, Fairfield, purchased in 2004 for $495,000; after home-equity loan and cash-out refinancing, the total owed was $570,000.
Then: In July the Hahns were several months behind on payments and had the house on the market for $555,000. They were in the process of moving to Los Angeles where Jeff Hahn had a job offer.
Now: No buyers expressed interest even after several drops in the asking price. No payments were made on the mortgage. House was sold at a foreclosure auction Dec. 17, reverting to the lender for $474,750.

"The number of hate comments we got just floored me," Jeff Hahn said. "This wasn't something we chose to have happen to us. I just don't get how these people can judge me like this and think we completely took advantage of the system. The system took advantage of us. We're the ones losing our house; we won't be able to rebound from this."
Note to Jeff: You never HAD the house.
($570,000/$60,000) = 9.5 ! ! ! Borrowed 9.5x their yearly gross. Wow!

1040 Hickory Ave
Fairfield, CA 94533
Sale History:
10/29/2004: $525,000

Given their ages this doesn't surprise me. I encounter many 20-dumbthings and early 30-dumbthings that possess an overwhelming sense of entitlement. I believe it is from upbringing by baby boomer jackasses. There's a good dialogue about this story at Ben's Blog.

Johnnie Pitts

Johnnie Pitts, House "Buyer"
Johnnie is right about one thing: miss a house payment or tax bill and you'll find out who really owns your house. Sadly, he was wrong on just about everything else:
- Wrong to pay $460,000 for a shit-hole in Oakland
- Wrong to re-negotiate his loan terms
- Wrong to continue paying for a house that is probably worth less than $200,000
- Wrong to think that "When it comes to renting, it’s just cash in the trash"

He has truly become a slave to this house, and it will sting twice as much when he finally walks away. You've heard the saying, "You'll be priced out forever." Well, I'm coining the new phrase for 2008: If you borrowed for a house over the last few years,...

"If you think your house is all yours, just miss a payment or property tax bill, and you'll find out who it really belongs to," he said. "We're not homeowners; we're renting from the banks and investors."

Does Pitt really want to continue working six days a week to keep a house that is now valued at about $330,000 - $100,000 less than he paid for it? He insists that he does.

"When it comes to renting, it's just cash in the trash," he said. "You can't win no way when you're renting, especially if you're single and in the 35 percent tax bracket. Owning a house is the best thing you can do for yourself. It's worth it to have some stability."
6223 MacArthur Blvd
Oakland, CA 94605

Sale History:
08/23/2005: $460,000
11/01/2000: $60,000
04/01/1998: $115,000

Wright Andrews, Lisa Andrews

Wright Andrews, Lisa Andrews, Washington Lobbyists
Lobbying and campaign contributions run amock! Perhaps the authorities will begin taking a serious look at Ameriquest's tactics. Where is Ameriquest, today?
" expired on 12/09/2007 and is pending renewal or deletion"

2005-01-27: Penalizing homeowners
...headlining the “Ameriquest Mortgage Super Bowl XXXIX Halftime Show” at Alltel Stadium. Ameriquest reportedly paid $15 million to snag the world’s most prestigious advertising slot,...

Sponsoring the Super Bowl halftime show is part of what Ameriquest vice chairman Adam Bass has called “our long-term vision . . . to become the lifelong mortgage company of every homeowner in America.”

Andrews hopes the new Congress will pass a law that replaces all state and local anti–predatory-lending laws with a federal standard. In Congress, Ohio Republican Robert Ney and Pennsylvania Democrat Paul Kanjorski are working on just such a proposal, says Kanjorski.
Andrews says he doesn’t represent Ameriquest and professes having “no idea what their practices are.” Nonetheless, they seem likely to be allies. Andrews’ wife, Lisa Andrews, is Ameriquest’s senior vice president for government affairs, and Ameriquest is an increasingly heavy hitter in Washington.

2007-12-31: Lender Lobbying Blitz Abetted Mortgage Mess
Ameriquest Mortgage Co., until recently one of the nation's largest subprime lenders, was at the center of those battles. Working with a husband-and-wife team of Washington lobbyists, it handed out more than $20 million in political donations and played a big role in persuading legislators in New Jersey and Georgia to relax tough new laws. Those victories, in turn, helped blunt efforts by other states to crack down on reckless lending, critics of the industry contend.

Washington lobbyist Wright Andrews and his wife, Lisa, coordinated much of the industry's lobbying. Mr. Andrews's firm, Butera & Andrews, collected at least $4 million in fees from the subprime industry from 2002 through 2006, congressional lobbying reports indicate. Mr. Andrews didn't represent Ameriquest directly. He ran three different subprime-industry trade groups: the National Home Equity Mortgage Association, of which Ameriquest was a member; the Coalition for Fair and Affordable Lending, which spent $6.3 million lobbying against state laws before it dissolved earlier this year, according to federal filings; and the Responsible Mortgage Lending Coalition.

In 2003, Lisa Andrews was appointed senior vice president for government affairs at Ameriquest. Her public-relations firm, Washington Communications Group Inc., claims credit on its Web site for coordinating the industry's victory in New Jersey, as well as its overall strategy at the state level. Ms. Andrews left Ameriquest in 2005 and returned to her firm..
Revolving Door Information:
Andrews, Lisa S, Career Client List, 1998 - 2006 : AMERIQUEST CAPITAL
Andrews, Wright, Butera and Andrews

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Mike Norman

Michael 'Mike' Norman, Economic Contrarian (or Idiot, same thing)
Michael gets inducted based on these two things. 1) His embarrassing appearance on Fox News with Peter Schiff, 2) His ignorant hyping of no-interest loans.

Famous last words from the video, dated Dec 31, 2006:
"I have no idea what Peter Schiff is talking about."
"I agree with Tom (Adkins). I think they're (home prices) going up about 10%."
"What artificial lending standard are you talking about?" LOL

Here is his take on no-money-down housing:
Question: What is your opinion on no-money-down housing developments, like those going up in the Poconos? — Scott (Fair Lawn, NJ)
Mike Norman: Scott, I think no money down is great. It's one of the ways that Americans are benefiting from trends like globalization and the rising use of technology. By lowering capital costs we have access to more credit and that helps the real estate market. As long as we don't enact policy that harms these macro trends, then there is little risk in these highly leveraged loans. As for the Pocono developments themselves, they may have run up too far too fast just as most other properties have, but long-term they're fine.

Mike's Website: Economic Contrarian Link is DEAD

Sonny Shrivastava

Sonny Shrivastava, Arizona Realtor / Faux Buyer
Sonny made the rounds on the blogs, recently. He wrote a letter to the Arizona Republic back in 2006 refuting the existence of a Housing Bubble while posing as a Buyer. What he neglected to mention is that he is also a realtor, and that he was playing the flipping game.
RE/MAX Achievers
- Ignorance still reigns in Phoenix: No housing "bubble" bursting in Valley
- Here's a letter to the editor from last May, saying there was no housing bubble in Phoenix. Didn't quite turn out that way, eh?
- If Only I Listened to the Inventory... In Buckeye, Arizona

Checking his listings, it's not hard to find poor pricing. Here is one:
12716 W Voltaire Ave El Mirage AZ 85335
Price: $210,000
Sale History
06/27/2005: $200,000
02/26/2003: $120,000
11/28/2000: $108,510

When we hit the bottom, this home won't be valued more than $120,000 and could very easily end up back at $108,000, which is probably the more likely outcome.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Alan Greenspan

Alan Greenspan, ex-Chairman of the Federal Reserve ('87-'06)
Under Alan Greenspan's chairmanship, the Federal Reserve lowered the federal funds rate to a half-century low of 1% in 2003 and 2004 to ward off the threat of deflation: falling prices, falling incomes, defaults, etc. Lowering the funds rate to 1% was like opening a fire hydrant--money came gushing out. A huge amount of it gushed straight into the housing market. Armed with generous mortgage commitments, homebuyers fought over properties in bidding wars that sent prices to the stratosphere. They took on lots of debt and overpaid. When Greenspan & Co. eventually realized that rates were too low, they started raising them. The housing market eventually succumbed to the higher cost of borrowing and the sheer unaffordability of homes. Plausible Suspect in the Housing Bubble

Guilty, as charged:
Greenspan alert on US house prices:
US house prices are likely to fall significantly from their present levels, Alan Greenspan has told the Financial Times, admitting that there was a bubble in the US housing market.

In an interview ahead of the release on Monday of his widely-anticipated memoirs, the former chairman of the Federal Reserve said the decline in house prices “is going to be larger than most people expect”.

2007-12-18: Fed Shrugged as Subprime Crisis Spread
2006-11-07: Greenspan Unconcerned About Housing

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Greg Lippman

Greg Lippman, Deutsche Bank AG trader
Aka 'Shittman'
It took all sorts of individuals and corporations to create the housing bubble. Here is what seems to be a 'Number 1 Asshole' in creating the 'Financial Engineering' behind the debacle. As he puts it, "subprime problems are what they are". Yes, they are a piece of shit that you helped serve up. Bravo, shithead!

2007-12-17: Subprime Securities Market Began as `Group of 5'
Lippman disputes that the derivatives the group of five helped create -- which banks packaged into CDOs -- caused the subprime crisis. "The problems in subprime are what they are and derivatives did not cause them,'' Lippmann says. "Derivatives enabled more CDOs to be created and the stakes to be bigger. But the transparency made people realize the problem faster.''
2002-12-15: Lippman Wedding (interesting backgrounds in his family)
Her father is the research director for Integra Realty Resources of Southwest Florida, real estate developers in Naples. Her mother retired as a financial consultant in Fort Worth. His father, now retired, owned the DBL Operating Corporation, a former real estate investment and management business in New York.
This is the first part in a five-part story on how Wall Street transmitted southern California’s go-go mortgage lending practices and the inflated U.S. real estate market into a global financial crisis.

Part 1: Over take-out food, traders set Wall St.’s subprime debacle in motion
Representatives of five of Wall Street’s dominant investment banks gathered around a blonde wood conference table on a February night almost three years ago. Their talks over take-out Chinese food led to the perfect formula for a U.S. housing collapse.
The host was Greg Lippmann, then 36, a fast-talking Deutsche Bank AG trader who aspired to make mortgage securities as big a cash cow for Wall Street as the $12 trillion corporate credit market.
- Rajiv Kamilla, a trader at Goldman Sachs Group
- Todd Kushman, who led a contingent from Bear Stearns

Deutsche Bank continues CDO Expansion
New York, April 5, 2005
Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. announced today that Richard Rizzo will join the Firm's Collateralized Debt Obligations (CDO) Group within the Global Markets Division next month.

"Our ability to enhance and increase trading in the secondary market is a vital part of our CDO business. "

Deutsche Bank appoints Greg Lippmann Global Head of ABS Trading & Syndicate and CDO Trading
New York / London, June 12, 2006
Deutsche Bank today announced the appointment of Greg Lippmann as Global Head of Asset-Backed Securities (ABS) Trading and Syndicate. Deutsche Bank today announced the appointment of Greg Lippmann as Global Head of Asset-Backed Securities (ABS) Trading and Syndicate. Lippman is based in New York and reports to Richard d'Albert, Managing Director and Head of the Securitized Products Group (SPG).

Lippmann joined SPG in March 2000 and has been instrumental in developing Deutsche Bank's ABS and Collaterized Debt Obligation (CDO) platforms.

"Greg has been instrumental in building-out our securitization trading and syndicate capabilities in the U.S. and globally over the last six years. He is highly regarded in the industry and has become a pioneer in developing new products and trading platforms for the market," said d'Albert. "With these appointments, we are positioned to build upon past success and further enhance the strength of our SPG platform."
Uhhhhh... are you sure about that, Deutsche Bank???

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas from George, Ben, Mozilo, and Hank!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Bernice L. Ross

Bernice L. Ross, Ph.D. and CEO,
First, what the hell is a 'Real Estate Coach'? The truth really hurts these people, and sites like Housing Panic are purveyors of it. Notice how the reference to Housing Panic is biased. It's not simply called 'Housing Panic', it was called 'fear mongering HousingPanic'. LOL These people are afraid.
(FYI: I'm the CEO of Housing Bubble Hall of Shame®)

An Interview With Bernice Ross, Real Estate Coach:
JIM: ... Do you feel that Realtors are at any risk of disintermediation?
BERNICE: Nope, Absolutely, positively, no way. The reason is that all of these new business models make the same mistake… They think that the website is a substitute for human connection. Look at all the activity on social networking sites. People want to be connected.

JIM: The most visited real estate blog to date is the fear mongering HousingPanic, which only focuses on the glass being half empty for the national real estate market. What's your take on all this housing bubble talk, and what affect (if any) do blogs like HousingPanic have on the current market? And the whole idea, that if it bleeds it leads - is there some sort of self fulfilling prophesy going on here that is having any kind of effect on the market?
BERNICE: Sites like Housing Panic are driving traffic based on fear. It’s too bad, but sex and bad news are what sells. The ironic thing is that if you are interested in the market and are buying, you want a bad market. The message I have for Realtors and your audience, is that if you are thinking of "moving up," you want a bad market. That’s in your favor. You don't want to be moving up in a sellers’ market. If you sell your current home for 30% less of its former value, but are able to move up to a home worth much more, and acquire it at a 30% discounted value, the swing is in your favor. Let's say you sell your home that you paid $300,000 for. Assume you sell it for $240,000, and move into a home that used to be worth $400,000 , but is now worth $320,000. You have just turned a $60,000 down turn into a $20,000 upswing. Your mortgage payment and taxes will be less all the way through your ownership too.
Again, what the hell is a 'Real Estate Coach'??? But I'm sure Bernice knows all about the use of sex to sell real estate. Read on...

Playing the Sex Card in Real Estate Ads
In one print ad, a woman straddles a shirtless man on a bed next to the words "try this at home" -- home being the new Herald Towers condominiums in midtown Manhattan.
...So now developers are using sex to sell real estate.

Real Estate Transparency: Real Estate Agent Fired for Sexy Slideshow
The Great Debate - Sex and Real estate

Donna Bushno

Donna Bushno, Seller
Sellers still have extremely unrealistic expectations about the value of their homes--as if it's some sort of entitlement because they are "home owners". Mrs. Bushno has a lot to learn about the Housing Bubble. She would do well to read Housing Panic. In the absense of 'free money', people need to be able to afford their homes. Just ask the Oropezas or Coffmans about 'free money'.

Unsuccessful home sellers trying their hands at sales
Donna Bushno doesn't have to sell her Ventura home, but after 35 years she wants to downsize. "It's time to move on," she said.

She and her husband put their three-bedroom, two-bathroom house on the market in July for about $569,000. After 30 days, they cut the asking price to $549,500. After five months and no bids, they dropped their Realtor and are now trying to sell the house themselves.

"It's taking sellers awhile to understand the new reality," he said. (Yes it is.)
Here is where the Bushnos live. Can you believe the 'Owner's Estimate' at Zillow?
1800 Savannah Ave
Ventura, CA 93004-3113

3 beds, 2.0 baths, 1,438 sq ft
For Sale: $549,900

Owner's Estimate: $628,320 LOL
ZESTIMATE®: $465,395
ZESTIMATE®: $443,006 12-18-2007 They better hurry!!
Tyrone-Est®: $275-300K
Ventura County Assessment: $53,912

1754 Potomac Ave Ventura, CA sold on 4-18-2007. More sqft for much less.
3 beds, 2.0 baths, 1,603 sq ft
Recently Sold: $469,000

Friday, December 21, 2007

Jason Grandon

Jason Grandon, Realtor
Jason's solution to the high--AND GROWING--inventory, which is a simple response to the bursting bubble. Realtors are desperate will do anything to get their sales back. They had their day in the sun, but now it's time to pay the consequences. He needs to accept the fact that realtors are also to blame.

How to help the real-estate market
Dec. 20, 2007 12:00 AM
Here is a moderate solution to the real-estate market:
There are more than 58,000 homes on the market. If each and every person who does not need to sell his or her home, or can wait to sell, takes his or her home off the market, the market will correct very quickly.

What we would see is all the homes that the banks have had to take back or the short-sale homes. After a few months, we would have a strong housing market. In fact, if many Realtors would educate their sellers about this, everyone would be happy.

Sellers would get closer to their asking price, buyers would feel more confident when making a decision to purchase, and Realtors would not be throwing their hard-earned money out the window to market a property that will not sell.

I honestly believe that the greed of the banks and mortgage companies are to blame for a majority of this mess. We are helping them out. But in order to keep happy customers and create a strong housing market, we all must work together.

If you are planning to sell your home in this market, think again. Waiting just a little longer could mean extra money in your pocket. - Jason Grandon, Scottsdale
From his website:
"...your housing payments cannot exceed 28 percent of your gross income and that your total debt cannot exceed 36 percent of your gross income."
I wonder how many times he enforced this rule during the housing run-up.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Zak Ahmadzada, Khalid Mirza, et al

Zak Ahmadzada (left), Khalid Mirza, Azim Feda (right), Wayne A. Lee, et al; Mortgage Fraud

Fraud was rampant during the Housing Boom. You can find numerous examples of defaults (including 1st payment defaults) in conjunction with abnormally high purchase prices. Here is an example being pursued by the Feds--go get 'em!

FBI Probes Virginia Mortgage Scam
Zak Ahmadzada, a mortgage broker with American Affordable Homes in McLean, and Khalid Mirza, a real estate agent with Re/Max Champions in McLean, were involved in many of the transactions.

Land records show that Ahmadzada bought three townhouses in the Villages at Rippon Landing in 2006 and 2007 for prices ranging from $418,550 to $439,615. He sold two of them months later for $570,000 and a third for $585,000. Some investors said Ahmadzada arranged for buyers' loans for several townhouses at the higher prices, with no down payments and 100 percent financing.

Mirza is listed as the agent for several of the homes that were purchased at the lower prices in Rippon Landing, according to Metropolitan Regional Information Systems, a database of homes for sale in the area. MRIS records do not show who the agent was for the subsequent sales at the higher prices. Web sites and ownership records show that Re/Max Champions and American Affordable Homes are in the same building and have the same chief executive, Azim Feda.

Karenn and Steve Oropeza

Karenn and Steve Oropeza, Home-ATM Users, Flakes
This is truly a disgusting case of robbery through home refinancing.

Mortgage-Relief PlanDivides Neighbors
The case of Karenn and Steve Oropeza from down the street shows how Inland Empire buyers complicated their lives by overextending themselves.

The Oropezas arrived at Calle Canon Road in 2004. Public records show they paid $557,000 for a four-bedroom house and took out a $500,000 mortgage. Her husband is an area manager for an auto-parts retailer and she is a purchasing manager for a firm that sells dietary supplements.
As property values skyrocketed, they refinanced three times, most recently in late 2006, for $835,000, Mr. Oropeza says.

The couple say they used some of the money they pulled out of the house for home improvement, such as a backyard waterfall. But Mr. Oropeza says the bulk was used to pay off credit-card arrears. "We were in a vicious cycle of refinancing our home to get out of debt," he says. "We banked on selling the house, but that's where we failed."

The couple listed the house several times, even before the final refinancing, which raised their monthly payments to about $6,300. Earlier this year, they were asking $839,000 for the house. But it just sat. Elsie Cambone, the Coldwell Banker agent who had the listing, says prospective buyers were put off by the vacant home next door.
Meanwhile, Mr. Oropeza expected to be transferred to Texas, so the couple began house hunting there in 2006. In June, they bought a 3,600-square-foot home for $283,000 in the Houston suburb of Katy, Mrs. Oropeza says. "It was easy. We had good credit. The deal was done in seven days."

In the run-up to their move, she says, the couple lived off credit cards to "make sure we had cash for the house payments" in Corona. They packed up in June, and then took their 9-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter on a long-planned Caribbean vacation. They returned to Calle Canon Road, "got in our cars and drove to Texas," Mrs. Oropeza says.

Mrs. Oropeza says that she and her husband recently bought a Lexus and a Chevrolet Suburban with no money down. She denies that the family intended to abandon the house. The choice was straightforward, she says: "It was easier to keep the house in Texas than the one in California."

The couple stopped making their Corona mortgage payments in June, triggering a notice of default 90 days later and starting the countdown to foreclosure. The family is now living in Texas. But Mr. Oropeza says he no longer expects a transfer, so every other week, sometimes more often, he says he flies west to make his usual rounds of retail locations in the Inland Empire. Mrs. Oropeza says she travels to Orange County every three weeks for her job.

"We're sad because there goes our credit, and because people think we are a bunch of flakes who walked away from the house and tried to make money," Mrs. Oropeza says. The property's for-sale listing has expired. "We have zero expectation that we can sell this house," she says. After the government-brokered mortgage plan was announced, Mr. Oropeza says he called the toll-free helpline and left a message, though he doubts he will qualify to get his Corona house back.
WSJ Blog: Fleeing Foreclosure in a Lexus
L.A. Blog: A vacation, a new Lexus... and then, default
Wall Street Examiner

Lets be clear:
- the Oropeza's are FLAKES
- they tried to make money off their home
- they walked away
- the job transfer was a farce; Texas has homestead laws; they were fleeing

Riddle me this: is it easier to live where your job is located, or commute 1500 miles?
I hope Steve's employer finds out and cans his sorry ass.

Corona house:
8733 Calle Canon Rd, Corona, CA

Here is where they live in Texas:
Karenn Oropeza
1414 Baldridge Ln
Katy, TX 77494-4713
(281) 392-7575

Daniel Sadek

Daniel Sadek, Quick Loan Financing
Quick Loan wrote $3.8 billion in mortgages, lending money fast – and often on onerous terms – to people with shaky credit. "I've sold all my cars to keep the company going," says Sadek, 38. "Every property I own is mortgaged to the max." Quick Loan has been accused of predatory lending, deceptive underwriting and fraud in at least eight lawsuits.
High roller of home loans

2007-12-18: Deal with the Devil
Dec. 18 (Bloomberg) -- One week in 2002, Daniel Sadek was $6,000 short of covering the payroll for his new subprime mortgage company, Quick Loan Funding Corp. So he flew to Las Vegas and put a $5,000 chip on the blackjack table.

"If we had a prime borrower on the line, we hung up on them,'' Buksoontorn says. "We were geared toward subprime because they were easier to close. We were giving them money no other bank would dare to give them.''

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Mario Tellez and Maria De La Vega

Mario Tellez and Maria De La Vega, Home Speculators
The average person should not speculate in real estate. This couple received some bad advice, but they got caught up in the bubble insanity, thinking it was an easy ticket to riches. That's Mario and Maria at the auction of one of "their" homes (red box). Why would they bother attending the auction? Strange. I would like to know who their Realtard was.

Couple's finances crumble as real estate investments sour
Tellez is a school janitor and De La Vega is a cook at a retirement home. Together they earn about $5,000 a month. Yet, on paper, they look like big-time real estate investors. They own four houses in Livermore, not counting the one that was foreclosed upon at the auction. Adjustable mortgages on the properties are due to go much higher next year, and Tellez said he doesn't see how they will be able to keep up.

...a friend convinced them that they could put that money to work by investing in more properties.

At first, the investments worked out well. They bought two properties for about $450,000 each and rented them out. Those properties went up in value, too. "The Realtor said, 'You've got a lot of equity now, why not continue to do this?' " Tellez recalled. So they did, taking out more equity and buying two more investment properties until they had five total - one for each offspring, plus the family home.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Angelo Mozilo

Angelo R. Mozilo, CEO, Countrywide Financial Corp
Angie has cashed in millions worth of stock options while his company's stock continues to drop, and it faces liquidity problems. In 2006, he pocketed $72.2 million in stock options. It's only a matter of time for Countrywide.
Mozilo wins even if Countrywide profits plummet
Countrywide: Secondary Mortage Market Conditions 'unprecedented'
He's been compared to oompa-loompas, but I think someone is pulling a "Weekend at Bernie's". This guy is a corpse.
2007-12-14: Ill., Calif. investigating Countrywide
"We're looking at why people who appear to us to not be able to afford the loans they're in are in these loans and how Countrywide contributed to that," said Deborah Hagan, chief of the attorney general's consumer protection division, on Thursday.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Roland Arnall

Roland Arnall, Ameriquest Mortgage
Roland and Ameriquest fostered a corporate culture of corruption. Ameriquest is on its way down. They're eliminating staff, and it's probably just a matter of time before the company is gone. (It is now gone, of course.) Get used to that view, Roland!
Ameriquest in Shambles

Video demanding justice be brought to Roland Arnall
ABC Story: Ameriquest Investigation
Here's some news stories on Ameriquest.
Mortgage fix eluded lawmakers in 2001
By John Hill, December 12, 2007
The state of California had a chance to curb lending practices that would later contribute to a crisis in subprime mortgages when it set out in 2001 to regulate so-called "predatory" loans.

Ameriquest didn't limit its giving to campaign cash. It paid $72,000 for Assembly Democrats to attend a fundraiser in Hawaii during the Pro Bowl in 2005, including gifts, airfare, lodging at Hilton Hawaiian Village and meals – even $170 for cookies.

Ameriquest CA Contributions

Monday, December 10, 2007

John and Grayce Coffman

John and Grayce Coffman, Retirees / Home-ATM Users
How can you take $600K out of your home in your 60s, spend it all, and have nothing to show for it? This money is probably sitting somewhere safely waiting for them. Leave it to the OC Register to save this "poor" family. This couple cashed out big-time! But this is also a great example of how easy it was for ANYBODY to get cash without having ANY ability to pay it back--they were RETIRED for god's sake!!

Tapped-out family's home is at risk
“John and Grayce Coffman could lose the Fullerton home they bought in 1977 because they can’t keep up with their mortgage’s rising costs. The Coffmans, who are unemployed and in their 60s, borrowed $552,300 from Countrywide Financial, the largest U.S. home lender, in the summer of 2005. Despite making about $50,000 in payments since then, they now owe more than $590,000 to Countrywide.”

“The Coffmans admit responsibility for getting deep into debt. They bought their two-story home for $97,000 in 1977 and have since extracted all the equity gain in it. They’ve cashed out $600,000 in home equity with the help of several lenders.”

But Grayce, where did the money go?????
“‘I can’t tell you,’ Grayce Coffman said. ‘We just made some really bad decisions.’”

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Dr. James F. Smith

Dr. James F. Smith, chief economist for the Society of Industrial and Office REALTORS® and a senior fellow and director of the Center for Business Forecasting at the Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise; Adjunct Professor of Finance
(hat tip to Housing Panic, December 08, 2007)
Famous last words...
Business Economics, Apr '05: There Is No Housing Bubble in the USA
"There is no evidence of a housing “bubble” in the United States and housing demand should stay strong for years to come". Three major factors lead to this conclusion. First, the 77 million baby boomers are approaching the peak home ownership ages of 65-75 (over 83.0 percent versus a national average in 2004 of 69.0 percent). Second, immigrants, a growing share of the U.S. population, tend to buy houses ten years later than people born in the United States of the same income group and family size. Third, mortgage rates are not likely to go high enough (8.0 percent or more for 30-year fixed rate mortgages) to put a crimp in demand. Despite some areas of concern, overall homeowners’ equity is at record levels above $9 trillion. Delinquencies are still less than one percent of mortgages outstanding.
And he gives Bernanke a B+ ...
Media Mentions: The Wall Street Journal quoted finance professor James F. Smith in "Economists give Bernanke a B+ for first three months on job."(May 10)
His Areas of Expertise:
- bank/banking HAHAHA
- bankruptcy HAHAHA
- consumer behavior HAHAHA
- economics: econometrics
- Federal Reserve HAHAHA
- finance
- international: economics
- international: trade
- retailing

Friday, December 7, 2007

Robert Toll

Robert Toll, CEO Toll Brothers
I'm sorry, Bob, did you say something? When will I be kicking myself? 2015? 2020? ...

“‘It’s not a matter of if, but a matter of when, the oversupply [of homes] is absorbed,’ said CEO Robert Toll. ‘Then we shall return to better times. I believe those who wanted to buy but didn’t will kick themselves for their reticence.’”

Monday, December 3, 2007

Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton, Wicked Witch of Washington
Ah, yes, more help for "homeowners" or "home investors".

Clinton calling for foreclosure ban: Report
NEW YORK ( -- Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is expected to call for a 90-day ban on foreclosures and a five-year freeze on adjustable mortgage rates Monday, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Video from Louminatti: Wicked Witch of Washington