Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

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joe2baba's picture
joe2baba
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Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

has anybody posting here lost a job in this meltdown?

has anybody here lost their house?

has anyone lost a family?

anyone lost a pension?

anyone own a small business losing money?

anyone who is going out of their small business?

anyone living off savings?

has anyone been directly affected?

i for one would like to hear it if you wish to share. after all we are a community right? and communities are there for each other in times of need.

 

metalmongrel's picture
metalmongrel
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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Hi Joe,

    The above questions are actually a source of confusion for me because in my everyday experiences, I see absolutely no difference in daily life around me since the financial crisis began. 

None of my extended family, nor any of my friends have lost a job, a house, or is in any real danger financially.  My father, who owns a small business, is just as busy as always.  My job has gotten more busy.  The traffic in my city (LA) is as bad as it always has been, restaraunts are just as full, most everyone has a new car, best buy and other non-necessity retail stores are as busy as always.  Maybe it's a blessing in disguise or perhaps alot of people are in denial, but if it wasn't all over the headlines, I wouldn't know that we are in a recession whatsoever.    

Crash's picture
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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Hi,

 

yeah, I feel the same. The biggest thing I have noticed is that where my mother works they had to reduce the building plans they had as the price of materials went up. Other than that, very minimal impact. Where I work, we're trading at lower numbers, but not too difficult. And it just means we might have to actually do some promotion to get more customers.

 

But if we are to believe the papers, there is a massive recession and there were riots in London last week.

 

Seems to me its all hype.

 

crash 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

DH lost his job in October (laid off). He worked for a recycling facility/trash disposal company and when the construction business tanked, there was not as much materials or trash being brought in. He has been unable to find another job and unemployment will end pretty soon. We live north of Seattle.

On our street, 3 of the nearest six houses are empty. The owners just walked away. There aren't even for sale signs up or foreclosure signs.

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Veronica (wife) was laid off two weeks ago from Sierra Pacific Industries, the second largest lumber company in the US, they have laid off around 500 employees and closed 3 mills and are talking of laying off 500 more people.

My business (CNC Machine Shop) is slower than usual for this time of year and I expect it to get worse.

There are many commercial buildings with "for lease" signs around especially retail, factory outlets have 13 empty stores (as of a month ago) out of 25.

If it gets as bad as Gerald Celente seems to think we might lose the house, I'm keeping just enough dollars to pay the bills and the rest is in physical PM's, I don't trust the dollar at this point.

We're planting a garden this year just in case, so yes, it is affecting us but we'll be alright.

Crash's picture
Crash
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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??
SkylightMT wrote:

DH lost his job in October (laid off). He worked for a recycling facility/trash disposal company and when the construction business tanked, there was not as much materials or trash being brought in. He has been unable to find another job and unemployment will end pretty soon. We live north of Seattle.

On our street, 3 of the nearest six houses are empty. The owners just walked away. There aren't even for sale signs up or foreclosure signs.

 

Sorry to hear that, Skylight, although, do those houses have gardens? hmmm, how about planting some food plants there? or a community orchard?

 

Crash 

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SkylightMT
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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??
Crash wrote:

Sorry to hear that, Skylight, although, do those houses have gardens? hmmm, how about planting some food plants there? or a community orchard?

 

Crash 

We've been planting on our property, and some of our neighbors are starting gardens on their lawns. But the idea of planting on those empty properties hasn't come up, as I think everyone is still considering it private property and not open for others' use. No one really knows who currently owns those properties or what is going to happen to them.

Its a good idea, though. And I think that as things continue to downturn, those of us who are left might begin making use of that land for gardening or something. One of our neighbors is keeping the yards mowed and kind of tidy so rats don't move in and the yards aren't depressing eyesores.

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Business wise, it's 'busier than usual'... go figure, I'm a General Contractor!  Banks have become a royal PITA but most material costs are down here.  If the owners can qualify for the loan and are willing to jump through another few hundred hoops, it can still work.

However, I have good friends who live not far away and it looks pretty grim for them.  He lost a bundle in his 401k (retired) and his wife will probably loose her job when the state tries to balance? their budget as she works for DSHS and they're anticipating 40% cuts.  I can see them possibly loosing their house.... what a shame.

No sign of abandoned homes but nothing is selling either.  According to the realtors, all their clients still think they can "sell for millions and retire".  Good luck to them... and heck, it helps me!  If everyone who wanted to sell priced their homes at reasonable rates, the new construction market would tank even further. 

Oh, I think I did loose some more hair recently or so my wife tells me.  I have noticed it's a bit colder without my cap on these days!

Tongue out 

 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

well, my mother has lost over 40,000 out of her 401k, and is now worried about being layed off from her job of over 15 years.

My cousin is loosing her house, my uncle may.

My mothers husband has been out of work for nearly 3 months. (he is a greeat guy, got married after I was out of the house...so I dont call him dad)

In the last 6 months, my pay has gone down by roughly 700 bucks a month. We are doing well though, I started making changes before my pay dropped which helped out a lot. Things will work out, all one can do is adapt to the surrpunding ya know.

Thats just off the top of my head.....

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

My dads studio business picked up though.

www.liveatthestudio.com 

I'm thinking because it is entertainment, either way, it is a good thing =)

If you all get a chance you should watch the jeremy osborne show, its pretty good....(I, nor my dad make any money from people just watching the shows...I don't want you all to think I am soliciting)

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Metal,

I live in SoCal and its weird you can't see what I see everyday.  Business is down everywhere; restaurants (sole props) are experiencing 18-20% loss over last year, nurseries (plants), interior decorators and other home improvement businesses (again sole props) are closing their doors.  Home Expo design centers will be finshed by the end of June (where my father in law has worked for years). My husband and I collect LP's and even that business is tanking; there are no more record chains to buy from and the used record stores are reducing space for used cds. lps, and vhs tapes.

Don't forget the casinos which are crying hard times.  My sister was let go from a casino (and denied unemployment benefits) in November 08 and is still out of work.  My brother is a contractor and hasn't been able to take a paycheck since Dec 08 as he sits waiting for public works jobs to finally start with the State (contracts signed and ready but no funding to begin).  My other brother was laid off in August from auto financing (been in the biz over 20 years and to hear him tell it, he's never seen the financial exodus hit CA like it has this time). Auto dealerships are closing all over SoCal.

My neighbor just received the "bill" for her son to play football next school year--- $800 she needs to come up with (for weight training and equipment fees) and her son also needs to individually fundraise an additional $200, this on top of no more school buses to bring kids to school, class size increases and teacher lay-offs, and more requests from families to supply tissues, paper towels, copy paper, and hand soap.

And me?  I work in non-profit and if I can't find grant funding to keep the office open I won't have my current job by year's end. 

From my perspective, there's a crisis goin' on and my family is up to their eyeballs in it.  I keep kidding my husband about maybe we don't need all those tom petty lp's because we might need to burn them next winter to keep warm.  He replies OK, so long as we don't touch the Blue Note jazz...

 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

After surviving lots of previous layoffs, my best friend's husband was laid off from Motorola in January.  I'm waiting to hear if they will be moving out of state.  My son and I will be heartbroken to lose our best friends of 10+ years.  I know that at least one of their neighbors is in foreclosure and several others are laid off.  My husband was "offered" a 10% pay cut last week (it was that or layoffs...some choice!) My neighbor's husband is working for 50% salary.  The house down the street is vacant, for sale by the bank.  We lost about 40% of our 401s,  IRAs, and long term savings that we kept in a fund.  However, I was lucky enough to get into a good school system last year, so while my job is not secure, our income is up and once we clear up the debt, we'll be able to save again (as long as my DH has the job).  We've always made less than the median and for once it is a good thing...our fall has not been as far and hard as some of our friends.  And I am looking forward to having my own vegetable garden in the backyard.  I pay close attention to Celente.  He gets it.

One question tho ...Am I thinking right in liquidating a considerable amount of my mutual fund holdings (not retirement) to pay off debt now?  (The cards are gone...yeah!!)  I am also planning to take all my kids gift $$ and buy gold with it (before the $ is worthless).

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

I agree that, at least in my neck of the woods, everyday life hasn't changed much.  In fact, in my neighborhood of about 250 homes, there are only 3 for sale right now.  I do know one person who has been unemployed for some time now.

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Its business as usual in Houston, blue skies and all that crap. Repost this inquiry in 10 years and I would suspect things will be extremely different. I hope I can afford internet service then so I can reply. In Great Depression terms, its only 1930-31. I think most people didn't really start hurting until the mid 1930's.

I love the feedback to this post because it gives me a wider perspective. Thanks for the post.

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

As the owners of a high-end service biz (Pilates/Massage studios), my wife and I were quite concerned last year when the markets were tanking.  But we weathered the year fine, with near-record levels of biz.  

After the beginning of the year, we began to see erosion in our biz's income.  Our big cash cow is located in Westchester County north of NYC, and all the layoffs and deeply reduced bonus checks made folks re-trench their spending for '09.  Biz is down about 25% (and due to the nature of our biz that means our profits are down about 80% -- we have no inventory, our only costs are rent & related items [heat, etc.] plus the pay of our instructors...once we cover those the rest is gravy -- but so far in '09 we're looking at too many taters and not enough gravy).  We're covering our expenses, paying our contractors and ourselves, but the extra above that is mostly gone.  So we're in dig-in-and-find-new-clients mode.

Amongst our (well-edumacated, well-heeled) clientele, there have been very few outright job losses.  But plenty work for companies (we have lots of breadwinners in the finance biz, and a couple bigwigs at the NY Times and a regional newspaper) that are having bloodcurdling layoffs.  Every couple months they have to sweat another round.  And there are a couple of people who have been "offered" reductions in pay (e.g., one guy is working 1/2 time right now -- although they said he could work full time for 1/2 pay if he preferred -- he's working 1/2 time for 1/2 pay and looking for another gig).  To our great good luck so far there have been very few people who've gotten sent home.  But things feel precarious for certain.  

Part of our biz is -- in addition to the massage or workout -- listening to them talk about their lives.  It's quite the balancing act to acknowledge their fears and help them cope without letting the fear run riot or blowing sunshine up their fannies and telling them "Oh, it's all going to be *fine*!"  Letting them vent is good therapy;  agreeing too candidly with their fears would drive business down.  Talk about cognitive dissonance.

For our part, as  I reported in my "Selling Some of Your Stuff?" thread yesterday, wife & I are pitching all non-essential expenditures overboard so if biz continues to decline, we can take less pay and still keep all the balls in the air.

Nice thread, Joe2baba, thanks.

Viva -- Sager 

 

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EndGamePlayer
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Re: Dubai -- link

We're doing ok here - getting more permaculture things going (as a spin off of what we grow for ourselves). We tightened our belts 2 years ago so not much has changed.

This story just came by - if you think you have problems -

http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/johann-hari/the-dark-s...

More reasons to stop buying oil.

peace

 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

My brother just closed his business repairing equipment for large mills in the wood products industry.  Good thing for unemployment.

I just reduced a lease for a tenant so she could keep her business open.  With all the ads on-line and "for lease" signs in the immediate area I felt that option was much better than being inflexible with an empty storefront. 

Another tenant has a high end furniture/antique store.  He told me in January business had been really slow!!!  I haven't had the nerve to ask him how things are going lately.  I just received another lease payment.  Whew!!!

My other business is down about 14%.  No GM, thankfully.   One competitor just closed his doors. 

My step-mother is getting far less substitute teaching days this school year.  Apparently there are many more subs signed up with the school district this year making it very competitive.

My wife's cousin and her husband were both laid off in the same week in late February.

A friend of mine who owns a logging company has been paying the bills by selling firewood (200 cords since last Sept) and tree planting (7 cents per tree, he's planted 40,000).  He told me there is very little logging demand right now. 

Just a few miles away four car lots in a three mile stretch have closed. 

On the bright side a friend of mine who works at a pawn shop said business has never been better.  They set up a booth at the last gun show and sold 47 guns in a two day period.

And if you watch CNBC you should know that the bottom has occured and the "turn around" is just around the corner.  It's just a matter of time now. 

 

 

 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??
Worker Bee wrote:

One competitor just closed his doors. 

 

Oh yeah, I neglected to mention -- one reason our biz last year was so good was that a nearby studio offering essentially the same services shut down.  That gave us a little +15% bump.  We have another competitor just 5 miles away.  I must say on my worrying days I wonder if they're about to fold (and then we could absorb some of their "refugees").  The lesser angels wrestle with the greater...

Viva -- Sager 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Here in Ottawa, a federal Government town we haven't seen much change nor do we expect to see all that much. Our recent bus strike seem to have affected businesses harder than anything else. My spidey senses tell me people are being a bit more cautious though at least those who don't work for the feds. My girlfriend works for a non-profit that relies solely on donors and they are definitely feeling the pinch. Their headquarters in the US has already laid off 120 people or so, have an international hiring freeze and all positions and activities are 'under the microscope'. She's worried about this job but she is highly skilled, has plenty of connections and very employable so we're not loosing sleep.

I grew up in Sudbury Ontario, a nickel town infamous for the world's largest smokestack, and still have family and friends living there. So far at least 4 people I know lost or will be loosing their jobs after thinking they've 'made it' with a big outfit and several others are getting worried. I foresee a wave of foreclosures sooner or later as the town lost nearly 850 direct jobs from the mines and assumingly more because so much economic activity there depends on mining. A lot of miners heavily banked on their 'nickel bonuses' too. I'm also growing concerned for my parents and their ability to retire comfortably in the next 5 years as planned.

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

I have friends, family members, and neighbors who've all been laid off in the past 6-8 months. The restaurants I frequent seem to be doing well, but I've been told business is down at some of them -- I think what happens is that people still go out to eat but don't order dessert or the second glass of wine, etc.  So, you look around and things might seem normal but the amount of money the business is taking in has decreased.  Or, someone who used to patronize a higher-end place trades down to a cheaper meal or store.

 

Joe, thanks for asking about this.

becky 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

The holistic health magazine DH designs has actually reversed a long-term decline in ad revenues in the past few months, probably because its main competitor went under. He's had trouble getting freelance illustration gigs though, and my BIL has lost his job. DH's SIL lost hers, but was hired back three months later in a different, lower paid role.

In my group of seven unschooling moms that meet every month or two for a brunch, the change in the last few months has been shocking. Two husbands have lost jobs and their wives have picked up part-time work (why is it the wives must work the underpaid job, on top of homeschooling and housekeeping, while the husbands stay home getting ever more depressed and angry as they can't find career-track jobs, is beyond me, but that's off topic). A third husband is so angry when his wife spends anything that she's trying to start her own business to support herself, should it become intolerable for her to stay in the marriage, and a fourth says her husband recently revealed to her that they are in dire financial straits (she's in one of those marriages where money is the husband's business only, apparently.) I drove back from that with my friend and we couldn't believe how the group's economic situation has deteriorated. That said, I don't see too much impact in my city yet, not too many vacancies, people still going out to eat, etc. I do hear people talking about money much more cautiously in the last month or three, though.

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Dad put funds from the sale of his overseas property into Lehman bonds... so that's gone.  There's a friend of his I know that lost a million bucks in the markets.  And another guy who also had his financial assets wiped out, not sure about the details.   The carnage is everywhere, even among folks with a high savings rate.  As for LA, depends on where you look.  I dont imagine "the city" looks any different, but here in the next county its obvious.  Simi Valley was a hammer swinging economy, its really pulled back.  Thousand Oaks which boasts one of the highest rates of education in American cities, looks business as usual, except for the local Sears...

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

I work on the wholesale end of the jewelry industry.  Business is dismal.  My job has reduced all employees hours and pay by 20% since January.  I hate to admit it, but I think it's just a matter of time before my job will have to let me go.  The folks in upper management are somehow optimistic about the coming Christmas sales, since the economy has "bottomed out" recently.  I don't have the heart to tell them how bad I think it will be.  I think that deep down, they realize how bad things may get and they're putting on an optimistic front for employee morale.

I also have a friend who lost his job doing post-production animation for commercials today. 

On the upside, the husband still has what seems like a pretty solid job at NBC and actually got a 4% raise this year. 

On a personal level, I pulled all of my money out of the market very
early and avoided any real losses so far - no mortgage, no credit card
debt.  I also diversified out of the dollar.  I have a pretty humble
lifestyle, so I'm still making enough money to pay the bills.

I've lived in the same part of Brooklyn for about 6 years now.  It's kind of a cute little neighborhood with mostly small 1 or 2-family houses.  During the time I've been here, there has been something of a surge in condo development.  On all the main 2-way streets in my neighborhood, there are now big luxury condos that remain completely empty.  There are a lot of "open house" signs every weekend.  Some are so new that construction is just now being completed.  A few have remained abandoned empty lots.  I haven't noticed any surge in crime or tresspassing or anything like that in the empty developments - it's just a little creepy and depressing.

To anyone out there who is facing tough circumstances, I extend deep sympathy. 

 

 

 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Well I'm new to the site but here is my story .

 

Lost my job on april 2nd , our whole site got shut down . Seagate (the company I worked for) basiclly shifted all manufacturing overseas when demand starting droping ,we were the first to go . Our plant was in Milpitas Ca so we could not compete with cheaper Singapore labor rates . So jobs gone , currently living off of severance package and unemployment. We also lost over over half of our 401k during this downturn . Our plant shut down put over 500 hundred people out of work .For me TS has hit the fan !

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

I live in a college town and things APPEAR relatively normal.   Fast food locales seem busy, sports events are well attended.....   That being said, the state I live in, North Carolina, has the third or fourth largest unemployment rate at 10.7%.    That being said, I've had my own personal depression going on before the financial meltdown started.   I moved to NC to start a business in 2006 which didn't take off as I had hoped.   After eight months of using my savings I had to take a job to make ends meet.   I was downsized from that job in May 2007 and couldn't find another until December same year.   In October 2007 I was hospitalized with a life threatening illness.   The hospitalization and treatment pretty much finished my savings and also resulted in having to sell my home.   Good thing I was able to sell it at all, and was able to get a job in December 2007.   Unfortunately, that job is with the state, and we all know how well states are doing now.   The Governor's Office has just announced proposed layoffs of 700 state employees, and 6,000 layoffs of school teachers by June.   I'll just have to take each day at a time and see how things go.   In the meantime, I've joined a meetup group whose purpose is to start community gardens.   We want to start gardens on vacant land in various parts of town.   The response has been great.   However, when TSHTF, I wonder how this will work out????   I live in an apartment and no longer own property which is why I'm not planting in my yard. 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

We live in El Paso, TX. Things here seem mas o menos normal. I work for a general contractor that builds for the Federal Government. We just got awarded two small contracts that will carry us out through December 2009 to possibly summer 2010. As far as I can tell, there's still plenty of contracting opportunities for the Gubb'mint.

About the only downside we can see is the drop in our home value. We bought in 2006, at the peak of the market here. There was a housing boom in El Paso at the time - The drop is not near what is being reported in other areas of the country, but a drop nevertheless. El Paso is due to receive a large number of troops in 2010, and maybe the housing market will go back up at that time. We have some buyers' remorse about having bought when we did, so we'll see what happens. I started my raised-bed garden and a pretty massive kids' playground project, so I'm reluctant to sell after putting sweat equity in.

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

My wife's family in Denver have a small family business dealing with real estate and home improvements that used to do very well, but now both sides of the business are suffering greatly (as one might expect).  Some of them are taking extra jobs to make up the difference, and they've also been selling off the handful of properties that they originally bought over the last 10 years as investments.  They're keeping their heads above water for now, but months ago they'd come to terms that the family business as it was cannot go on and so they're focusing their efforts away from it.  They're fortunate that they didn't take on as much debt as they easily could have during the super-easy credit days, otherwise they probably would have gone bust months ago like so many others.  But with things deteriorating as much as they have, what used to be considered a quite reasonable level of debt is now a huge burden.  Definitely a lesson there... taking on debt is always a risk to one degree or another, even when the "prevailing wisdom" says otherwise.

As for myself I'm actually doing much better financially, but that is because I transferred to a substantially higher-paying job. But the job entails some personal hardships and sacrifices, so the pay comes at a price.  But I'm acting under the assumption that no matter what I do I will not have a job more than 2 years down the road (or that the money I make will be close to worthless), so I need to prepare for the coming financial winter so to speak.

- Nickbert

 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

My husband's company laid off a large majority of their contractors in December, then his team laid off 25% of their full time employees in February. He managed to survive the lay offs so far, but now there are rumors of more lay offs and several projects may be shutdown or stripped down to bare-bones personnel.

We've been trying to sell our house, but nothing is moving at all in our neighborhood. Several of the other houses for sale have dropped the prices below their loans and they still aren't selling. Three homes in the area have lovely bright-red foreclosure signs on them and will be up for sheriff-sale soon. Two of my neighbors have just lost their jobs and will probably default on their houses within the next 2 months.

I lost almost 30% on my grandmother's inheritance while it was in probate (thank goodness I could claim the capital loss on my taxes). I also had to cash in my 401k and Mutual Fund to pay for medical expenses that weren't covered by insurance... and took losses and penalties on those, too. 

My sister and BIL recently had to sell their business in CA and move to TX because it was just too expensive to live in CA and business was slowing down very badly (RV sales and service). My sister actually had to start working temp for the IRS because she couldn't get hired anywhere else even though she has a business degree and tons of experience. Her husband had to accept an entry-level mechanic's position even though he's been doing major mechanical work for over 30 years. 

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Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

I am new to the site.  Finding this site and watching the Crash Course is a direct result of what I lost and my need to understand why I lost it.

We lost our first home last year to mortgage servicing fraud.  This also included bankruptcy, which we attribute solely to our situation with our mortgage, as we made decent money and paid our other debts as agreed.  I've had my credit ruined twice now, once when I was fresh out of high school and credit card companies practically threw cards at you as you walked through the student union and now again as a result of dealing with shady mortgage servicers.

The first time, I educated myself about the mistakes I had made and paid the debts, repaired my credit, and moved on to buying our first home.  That process took over 7 years.  We bought a modest and affordable home for the purpose of becoming foster parents and beginning a family.  Fees began appearing on our mortgage shortly after we moved in.  The math or amount that they said we owed always seemed "off" and by May 2006, we found ourselves in a stand-off with Countrywide.  They were threatening us with foreclosure, despite weathering financial hardship in the past without going to the extent of bankruptcy, we felt we had no choice but to try to save our home by going into a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the kind where you repay your debts in a payment plan.  We were half way through it, too, when we found the term "mortgage servicing fraud" and believed that it applied to what we were dealing with.  We were devastated and couldn't believe, at first, the massive corruption we now imagined to be going on in this country!!  For the past year and a half now, I have been learning more and more about how our financial system works.  As a young 20 something, I had to learn all about credit repair, credit bureaus, consumer credit protection laws, and such - it was an expensive, but valuable, lesson and prepared me - or so I thought - to be a competant user of credit.  If only it actually had!  Because the truth is, even for those that legitimately try, like we did, I think the banks and financial powers that be will find a way to keep you down.  That's why we're learning more about living debt free.  It would take losing a home and going through bankruptcy, and the larger arena of information regarding wall street, the Fed, fiat, and other stuff covered in the Crash Course for me to finally feel like I know what's REALLY going on here.  I'm going on 32 and thanks to the bankruptcy have very little debt, my husband and I are set to close on a house Monday that we are paying for with cash, courtesy of my husband's IRA which we feel is better serving us as a free and clear home as opposed to investing in a sham.

I found this site and have added it to my ever increasing list of resources for understanding "the meltdown"  I will also add that my parents and my brother also lost their homes, which I also believe was fraud related.  I've gone from truly financially illiterate to knowledgable and experienced to I could probably now be teaching others - and that's kinda what I'm thinking of doing now with my time as I am currently unemployed (due to personal reasons and not the economy).

Our story of mortgage servicing fraud can be read here http://www.sctimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20090315/NEWS01/103150026

I look forward to learning more and conversatin' with everyone.

 

SamLinder's picture
SamLinder
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Jul 10 2008
Posts: 1499
Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??
aprilinheaven wrote:

I am new to the site.  Finding this site and watching the Crash Course is a direct result of what I lost and my need to understand why I lost it.

<snip>

Our story of mortgage servicing fraud can be read here http://www.sctimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20090315/NEWS01/103150026

I look forward to learning more and conversatin' with everyone.

April,

First, let me welcome you to the site.

Second, let me express my sincere sympathy for what you have gone through. It is awful when you try to do the right thing only to find out you've been shafted by greedy scum.

However, I am a bit curious as to a couple of things.

1. Did you have a fixed mortgage payment?

2. If so, did you question the added fees to the point of demanding to know explicitly what they were for? If not, why not?

What April did notice was
something curious about the mortgage statements. Sometimes even when
she sent a payment on time, they would show a late charge. Other times
they would list “other fees” without any explanation.

3. Why didn't you seek advice from someone in the industry (or a lawyer) when there were things you didn't understand?

April didn’t understand what it all meant, but she kept paying everything she could, afraid of losing the house.

4. Are you part of the class-action lawsuit against Litton Loan Servicing? If not, have you sought legal advice as to how you might pursue a cause of action against Litton Loan Servicing for fraud?

Please don't misunderstand my questions. They are not meant to be accusatory. Rather, I'm trying to understand more about what happened to you.

aprilinheaven's picture
aprilinheaven
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Apr 11 2009
Posts: 2
Re: Lost a Job??? Lost a House?? Lost Anything??

Thanks, Sam, for welcoming me here and no need for sympathy, this experience has afterall led us to awareness and freedom.  It hurt like hell at first, but we're starting to see the silver lining.  Your questions are, of course, all very valid and I don't mind answering them.

1. Did you have a fixed mortgage payment?   We had a 3 yr. ARM on the first mortgage that kicked in while we were in our Chapter 13 repayment plan.  We were strictly required to be current during that time and paid on time as required, even as the payment grew larger and larger.  Our income did support the increase, but around the time we converted our bankrputcy to a Chapter 7, the payment was set to go beyond comfortable.  It's a good thing we caught them when we did.

2. If so, did you question the added fees to the point of demanding to know explicitly what they were for? If not, why not?   We did question the fees and were met with alot of hostility and threats to foreclose.  We didn't talk to Litton during the bankruptcy and everything I had read about them suggested I would be totally wasting my breath.  We did send Litton a RESPA request about 16 months ago and have never received the requested summary of our account history and how our payments were being applied.

3. Why didn't you seek advice from someone in the industry (or a lawyer) when there were things you didn't understand?  Unfortunately, our bankruptcy lawyer seemed interested only in doing the bankruptcy.  Have inquired with many lawyers "too busy" to take on our case.  I have LOTS of good stuff in my possession, but another MAJOR factor in our decision not to litigate at this point is emotional burnout.  We've been parenting a highly special needs teenager for the past 3 years, the impact of losing a home, it's all been SO much to deal with and we just didn't feel we had the energy.  And we certainly don't have the financial resources.   Also, we remained silent due to the stigma of having had financial problems.  We did fall behind sometimes and it was hard, at that time, to seek information without feeling totally embarrased and ashamed.  During the Chapter 13, for 1 and a half years, we told hardly anyone what we were going through.  But once I knew what was happening, the extent of the fraud in this area, I started telling anybody that will listen!

4.  Are you part of the class-action lawsuit against Litton Loan Servicing? If not, have you sought legal advice as to how you might pursue a cause of action against Litton Loan Servicing for fraud?  The class action is for a type of violation Litton wasn't guilty of with us and as to the second part of this question, our daughter with special needs recently moved into a group home, she is 18 now, and we are downsizing into a much smaller house.  Trying to simplify, too, in all ways.  I don't know if it's worth it to go to court or if my time and energy would be better spent educating others and advocating for change/consumer protection.

I appreciate the opportunity to tell my story and I welcome questions, I have even tried to dissprove this to myself many times, it can seem so crazy.  But I think that's how it's intended to make one feel.

 

 

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