Personal Responsibility / more mortgage help for “troubled borrowers”

Posted: 31st March 2010 by Scott @ The Right of a Nation in General Politics

According to ABC News, the White House is once again making multi-billion dollar efforts to help out “troubled borrowers” who have mortgages that they can’t afford.

Remember when we were all laughing at Peggy Joseph when she said that she can’t wait until Obama is elected so she doesn’t have to worry about paying for her gas and mortgage anymore?


“The administration wants to help two groups of borrowers at risk of losing their homes: the unemployed and the underwater — who owe more on their mortgage than their home is worth.

Now lenders can reduce the payments for unemployed homeowners for a minimum of three months and a maximum of six months while the borrower looks for work.

Underwater homeowners will also receive help from the White House. As housing prices have plummeted, millions of homeowners have ended up underwater, owing more than the value of their homes. Under the new plan, lenders would reduce a homeowner’s mortgage balance by at least 10 percent to get within 15 percent of the new real value of their home, refinancing into loans backed by the government’s Federal Housing Administration in an effort to make the loans more affordable.”

Before I get to the heart of my post, I’d like to say that I really don’t understand why people who are “underwater” on their house need help. Being underwater, as it said above, is when you owe more on something than it is worth. I understand that it is not a desirable position to be in, but how exactly does living in a home that you are underwater on hurt you? Just don’t sell the house and you will never know you’re underwater, right? Anyone who buys a new car is immediately underwater on their car, sometimes for a few years.

Anyway, in my state, Carolina Live went around interviewing people about this new mortgage assistance bill, and the responses were pretty surprising.

Many local homeowners still have some questions, ones that they’re already answering.

“Who’s gonna pay for this? Me and you, we’re going to pay for this,” asked, then answered Drexel Mixson, who owns a home in the Southgate community in the Carolina Forest area.

Mixson bought his home two years ago.

“My house is worth $70,000 less than what it was when I bought it, but my taxes keep going up. When does it stop?” continued Mixson.

Apparently this homeowner is more concerned about lowering taxes than getting the country more in debt in order to help people like him out.

“I think the government has helped too much already,” suggested Brian Mahaffey, a homeowner in The Farm, another community in the Carolina Forest area.

Mahaffey recently sold a home where he took a bit of a loss, telling NewsChannel 15 he reluctantly sold his home in a short sale. As a result, he has first hand experience of the struggling housing market.

Mahaffey says he’s currently working three jobs to pay his mortgage and adds that people need to take personal responsibility.

“If people got into a mortgage they couldn’t afford, they knew what they were getting themselves into at the time and unfortunately the money they’re proposing to help these people out has to come from somewhere,” continued Mahaffey.

Now, where I’m from, this is what you call a “grown-ass man.”  Apparently he got a house that was maybe a little bit much for him, and then when he realized that, the housing market had gotten worse and his house was now worth less.

So what did he do?  Did he pout and cry and then get angry and smash up the walls and destroy the fixtures in his home and walk out on his mortgage?  Did he shout from the roof tops about the injustice that has been done to him, and demand assistance from a bunch of people he’s never met in Washington, DC?

No, he sold the house because of the fact that he no longer could afford it, he took a loss on that house, and he picked up as much extra work as possible in order to cover that loss and pay for his new mortgage.  And just like he said, that is called taking “personal responsibility.”

This type of attitude in a person is what has made America great from its very beginning, and unfortunately it seems to be getting harder and harder to find.

“There’s way too many people (in foreclosure) and through no fault of their own… so, anything to keep people in their home is a great thing,” countered John Winzenried, a local real estate agent with 843Realtors, sees the good in the assistance program.

Maybe this guy is right too, but unfortunately he doesn’t mention any of the ways that people buy houses they can’t afford without knowing it.  I know the job market is pretty crappy, and even if you bought a house that you could afford at the time and lost your job, you probably can no longer afford it.  Anyway, it’s not surprising that a Realtor is supportive of the government giving people money that will help them to be able to continue to buy houses.

“I think it’ll be a good thing. Anything that our government can do to help out local residents that are in trouble with their mortgages is a step in the right direction,” said Winzenried, who is also a homeowner in The Farm.

I’m sure this guy had more to say than that, but on the surface it basically looks like another comment representative of the “oh, free money from the government, I’m cool with that” type of thinking.

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