Bank of Amercia Suspends All Foreclosures

Bank of America today announced it will stop foreclosures in all fifty states.

The bank said the foreclosure process on delinquent borrowers will continue, but it will not proceed to judgment or a foreclosure sale.

"Robosigning" allegations are mounting and Sen. Chris Dodd said he will hold a hearing on foreclosure practices November 16. State attorney generals are also investigating and initiating or contemplating fraud suits. Here's more on the prevalence of robo-signing.

"We started instructing people to pull their documents from the clerk of the court," says Anne Batte, who runs a foreclosure-assistance group in Georgia called Operation Restoration. "And the more we instructed, the more we saw. Nearly every document I have seen has been improperly signed."

Bloomberg has an interesting column describing how even a man who had no mortgage had his home foreclosed on due to the robo-signing.

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    These days when Chris Dodd (5.00 / 3) (#1)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 12:25:49 PM EST
    says he is going to hold a hearing on foreclosure practices, that's like a warning that the next set up for the next screwing is coming.

    Ouch! (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by DFLer on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:25:35 PM EST
    been talking to Matt Taibbi?

    Wow, I have not talked to him lately (none / 0) (#59)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 09:21:01 PM EST
    but I did share a shuttle with him once and let him use my cell phone :)

    On the job interviewing (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by MO Blue on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:58:57 PM EST
    for the next employment opportunity?  :-(

    Good pr move... (5.00 / 0) (#4)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 12:49:34 PM EST
    but since they are continuing the drum up to foreclosures, its only temporary...they'll be ready to pounce again real soon once eyes are diverted elsewhere.

    Says the gambler about the thieves :) (none / 0) (#7)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 12:58:35 PM EST
    Can't resist, nobody is three moves ahead with the tell and the distraction like a gambler.  Practicing this Buddhist thing all I have is the Now, I cling to the fraud in the choppy sea and nobody comes to the rescue, fraud everywhere, the same fraud that was always there that sometimes people acknowledge but mostly don't :)

    The NOW is good... (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:57:35 PM EST
    As you can see retirement for me is gonna take a WSOP or Pick-Six score...the NOW sure is sunnier than that proposition:)

    But Dadler is well on his way...he'll be posting from the French Riviera if his investing streak continues for much longer. The dude is the Warren Buffet of low stakes FullTilt right now.


    Won another $1300 last night (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by Dadler on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:38:15 PM EST
    Fifth place in a 1200 person tourney.  This is certifiably ludicrous. But I ain't complaining.



    and we're up to medium stakes now, baby. (none / 0) (#46)
    by Dadler on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:42:44 PM EST

    I was ready to nominate you... (none / 0) (#47)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:43:08 PM EST
    to replace Geithner before this sick run, based on your enlightened views on currency...now I am thoroughly convinced you're the man for the job!

    At the least you're a lock for the WSJ Top Investor of the Fiscal Quarter Award, how many thousands percent return is it up to?  Ride that hot streak holmes!


    I have the paperwork to refinance. But (none / 0) (#9)
    by oculus on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:00:56 PM EST
    mortgage broker told me there are really only five big banks making these loans now:  Chase, B of A, Wells Fargo, etc.  Rate he offers is better than my credit union.  What price peace of mind?

    Jon Stewart (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by jbindc on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:50:54 PM EST
    Had a good segment on this very topic last night.

    Just another monkey wrench being thrown (none / 0) (#2)
    by beefeater on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 12:38:26 PM EST
    Into any hope of a recovery in Real Estate. Many of the loans were based on fraudulent income and employment documents in the 1st place and now the mortgage servicers are at it again.

    By "recovery"... (none / 0) (#6)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 12:53:30 PM EST
    do you mean a return to sky-high fantasy real estate prices?  Who wants that?

    We don't need a recovery, we need to allow a long overdue market correction to run its course and for the gamblers to take the just loss coming to them...I'm talking to you BofA.  Meet all your indentured servants in the middle, and lets go forward...take your huge loss, you can make it up over the next ten years of grift...stop being so greedy.


    A lot of people that aren't you or me (none / 0) (#8)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 12:59:21 PM EST
    want that :)

    Touche... (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:11:19 PM EST
    If you look at your house and see a pot of gold instead of a house, or work in the rackets, or collect real estate taxes, I could see a return to sanity not being a very desirable.

    And we cater to the greedy, not the needy:)


    What will be your answer to the (none / 0) (#10)
    by BTAL on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:08:51 PM EST
    millions of people whose retirement/pension accounts are waist deep in MBS investments?  Tough luck, start enjoying the taste of cat food?

    This is not just the WS banks that will get a haircut.


    Hey... (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:21:46 PM EST
    the life of a gambler ain't easy brother...chicken today, feathers tomorrow is how the saying goes for gamblers.

    If you trust your retirement to pigs, you might end up eating cat food...what can I tell 'em?  I ain't banking on all my bets being winners come retirement time...if there is a retirement time.  

    You raise a good question...is there a way for regular folks to retire without gambling in shady games?  I don't know the answer.  If there isn't, people are gonna have to choose and mind their bets more wisely in our dog eat dog system...or come up with a better system.    


    Am not talking about the gamblers (none / 0) (#16)
    by BTAL on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:27:35 PM EST
    but people like teachers and other employees that either their company, govt employer or union manages the pension portfolio.  Those people made their weekly retirement paycheck contributions which are then amassed and invested to ensure long term liquidity and sustainability.  Not one of those individuals ever so much as thought about where to invest their money.

    Those are the ones I am talking about - and it is a HUGE group of people.


    Ya. Those are all gamblers to kdog. (none / 0) (#18)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:33:27 PM EST
    He gambles - cards, mostly, horses on occasion. He keeps his money under his mattress. Literally.

    They are gamblers too... (none / 0) (#19)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:47:04 PM EST
    Investor and Gambler are synonyms in my book...same thing, though "investor" doesn't carry the degenerate conotation of "gambler".  But both risk money in the hope of making money out of money.

    Call those folks collective gamblers or a gambling syndicate.  The only difference is they pooled money to gamble as a group instead of an individual with their 401k.  I feel for 'em, don't get me wrong, they were sold a lemon and bought it...that "investing" would "ensure" liquidity and stability...as the last few years have shown us nothing could be further from the truth.  There is no such thing as a sure bet...not even government bonds.  

    The only people not gambling on retirement are those who live on SS & savings alone, or the very wealthy who have enough for several lifetimes...the rest of us are straight-up gambling.


    Now, now, Kdog (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by NYShooter on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:35:59 PM EST
    There really is a difference between investing and gambling.

    Gambling is picking red or black, then rolling the dice; no thought involved. Investing has an empirical basis to it. For example: let's say you come to me and say you'd like to build a house and need $100,000. I figure, bank savings, or Gov't bonds pay 2% interest. After doing my due diligence, and you've satisfied me as to your willingness to work hard and sacrifice by saving up a substantial down payment, I offer you the money to build your house, charging you 4% interest. With the Government tax policy support they basically cover your interest payments with tax subsidies.

    So, you end up with a house, a home that provides shelter, a place to raise a family, and the security of knowing you'll eventually own it outright and have something to bequeath to your heirs.

    In other words, value was created.

    That's investing, and it`s a good thing

    Of course, that`s not what Wall St. did. They weren't satisfied with 2%; they wanted 50%, 100%, and more. And so, they set up the biggest fraudulent Sting operation in history to get it.

    What sucks so bad, and what left a stench that will never go away, is that when they rolled snake-eyes, it wasn't them that lost their money. The Government took it from us, gave it to them to replenish their gambling stash, gave them license to come after us, destroying millions of families, and then said to them, "Now that you're whole, go do it all over again."


    Whaddya mean no thought involved? (none / 0) (#48)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:55:58 PM EST
    I must choose red or black, same as you must choose if the odds of getting 100k + 4% back from me are worth risking 100k.

    What you're trying to say is there are better gambles than others...and I agree.  But it is still gambling, there is just a skill to picking good gambles over bad.  


    I should know better (none / 0) (#60)
    by NYShooter on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 09:28:50 PM EST
    than to debate you.

    Double or nothing?;)


    Don't be silly... (none / 0) (#62)
    by kdog on Sat Oct 09, 2010 at 10:32:07 AM EST
    we agree on what sucks so bad, enabling compulsive gamblers:)

    I do understand your point Shooter, responsible banking/investing vs. how we've done it lately...I'm just weird and still consider our system entirely based on gambling...which isn't necessarily a bad thing, if the gambling is responsible.  Gambling can lead to wonderful things...innovation, jobs, progress, a home, a living.  Or bad...going busto.  It may be the best system, provided the deal is fair and square...I don't know.  I don't think communism works any better, thats for sure.

    I just think it's dangerous and foolish to think capitalism is something it isn't...like a guaranteed plush retirement or a house that is somehow divined by right to double in value.  It's what got us in this mess...naivety.  


    You can say the same thing (none / 0) (#64)
    by NYShooter on Sat Oct 09, 2010 at 02:19:35 PM EST
    about almost anything. Take baseball, for instance. There's a winner....and a loser. The good thing about being a loser is....you can pick yourself up, and try again tomorrow.

    Our Capitalist system is supposed to be the same. No one guarantees you'll be a winner, but it's supposed to guarantee that there's no roadblocks to keep on trying to become a winner.

    But what would baseball be like if there wasn't an umpire calling balls & strikes, or safe or out at second base? Or, as we've allowed to happen to our Capitalism, the umpires are paid by one side only?

    You'd have what we have today: a diseased mutation of our Democracy and a Government bought and paid for by a handful of "fixers."

    So, I agree with you; Capitalism is gambling. But it's not gambling when "the house" gets to load the dice or deal from the bottom of the deck. That would be called a crime. And criminals don't usually give back their ill-gotten gains voluntarily.

    You have to take it back from them......by any means necessary.


    Gambling is a choice. (none / 0) (#40)
    by Cream City on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:19:58 PM EST
    I have no choice about my pension fund deduction.

    Sounds like an issue... (none / 0) (#41)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:26:57 PM EST
    to be addressed with your employer and/or union.

    You should have a choice as to whether you wanna gamble on the gambling skills of whoever manages your pension fund.


    Uh, reality to kdog, reality to kdog (none / 0) (#50)
    by Cream City on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 04:09:02 PM EST
    So all I have to do is persuade the other 100,000-plus members of my pension fund?

    Or I could keep taking on extra work to add to my savings.  Guess which one I choose.


    Harsh reality... (none / 0) (#63)
    by kdog on Sat Oct 09, 2010 at 10:42:50 AM EST
    thats exactly it CC...we've set up a system where 100,000 people stake their retirement on a fund manager who, unless he/she is the Robin Hood of fund managers, is looking out for his first.

    I sleep better with my pension under the mattress as opposed to my company's 401k plan...give my money to some dudes I never met to gamble for me in a crooked game?  Just doesn't seem secure or smart to me...though I understand it is the best shot people think they have, and it may well be...which is kinda sad in itself, fund managers holding all the cards.  Great for fund managers, the rest of us not so much.  


    They did it blindly (none / 0) (#58)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 09:19:22 PM EST
    I read a book back in the 90s that predicted all of this because we just started handing our money to Wall Street like clock work and we asked for no accountability.  Who is this stupid?  We are!  In real life we are all responsible for our actions, and it is our desire to not be responsible for our actions that leads to the next fleecing.  We have no one to blame but ourselves.  We pretended like there actually was magic fairy dust out there for the taking, and the whole of Wall Street and all of its CEOs was happy to pretend with us.

    Okay. (none / 0) (#20)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:49:02 PM EST
    if they are based on fraudulent income as you say who should be held accountable for that? Apparently the banks or the mortgage brokers were not doing their jobs if they did not check behind the documents.

    When we bought our first two houses, everything was verified with an employer or by tax returns. This last time they were really slack in income verification even though we did not lie on any forms.


    Here is a good post (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:06:18 PM EST
    on how to find the owner of your note. I think you were one of the people looking yesterday. It requires some letter writing and takes some time. i plan on starting tomorrow.

    Yes, (none / 0) (#49)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:56:08 PM EST
    I was one of the ones. I checked the county records and they do not have the correct name but interesting thing about the article you linked to it says that banks haven't been recording the change of ownership of the loan on the records because they are some cheap bas*** apparently.

    Exactly - me too (none / 0) (#29)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:37:41 PM EST
    I couldn't believe they did not ask me for 3 yrs of tax returns, show the money for the down payment in the bank 3 weeks ahead of closing, etc. - all the things I had to do to buy my first home in Colorado 14 yrs earlier. And they knew I had a whole other mortgage on my Colorado house. I was happy about the ease of it, and I knew I could pay the two mortgages for a while, but not indefinitely. But it sure told be me times had changed.

    I got out of the real estate business just in time (none / 0) (#3)
    by Angel on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 12:49:12 PM EST

    Yes you did (none / 0) (#5)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 12:51:41 PM EST
    And after they blow the holy jeebus out of everything, it will be time to get back in again :)

    No...absolutely no....intentions of doing that! (none / 0) (#12)
    by Angel on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:12:28 PM EST
    Cognitive dissonance (none / 0) (#14)
    by Zorba on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:23:30 PM EST
    After voting yes on H.R. 3808, the Interstate Recognition of Notarizations Act of 2010, to make it easier
    to further erode the due process afforded homeowners in foreclosure proceedings.

     as BDT said earlier, now the Senate will hold a hearing on foreclosure practices????  Give me a fricking break.  Which is it, Chris Dodd?  Help the banks, or help the homeowners who are underwater?  

    Sorry, I meant BTD (n/t) (none / 0) (#15)
    by Zorba on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:24:02 PM EST
    if you see your house (none / 0) (#17)
    by cpinva on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:27:48 PM EST
    as an investment, instead of a place to live, perhaps raise a family, then you're in trouble right from the start. unless, of course, you happen to be in the real estate investment business.

    first and foremost, your primary residence is just that, your residence. any increase in value, over what you paid for it, should be considered a nice, but not expected, stroke of good fortune.

    to do otherwise is to invite disaster. any truthful realtor will tell you this.

    But what does this sentiment have to do (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by observed on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 01:49:37 PM EST
    with the issue of fraudulent foreclosures?

    I did have that attitude - that any gain in value (none / 0) (#26)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:28:38 PM EST
    was gravy I could leave to my nieces and nephews. But I did not expect it to lose half its value either, which is what has happened.

    I'll be paying another 20 years on something worth half of what I am paying. Now someone tell me what incentive I have to keep doing that other than my pride?

    I did not falsify anything to get the loan, but I would not be surprised if the mortgage broker did, since I already had a mortgage in Colorado when I moved here. Any bank doing due diligence would have disapproved the loan.

    I guess I have no real point, except that I am going to pay the steep price because I am conscientious and the banks are not.


    Besides pride... (none / 0) (#28)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:36:47 PM EST
    It'll keep that big brain of yours dry and cool in those summer months, a roof over your head...provided you can cover your inflated mortgage and the rising electric bill.

    But maybe you should get the paperwork checked out at the clerk, maybe you're living in a freebie due to banker/brpker shadiness and don't even know it!


    ha! Yes, and I do like the house, so there (none / 0) (#30)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:42:15 PM EST
    is that. I just try not to pay attention to the local real estate ads. Keeps my blood pressure down.

    All this news this week has removed any qualms I will have about stopping paying the mortgage if times get desperate, like I lose my job or something. I made made a mistake, but they did too. They can at least split the losses with me.


    Yep... (none / 0) (#32)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:53:02 PM EST
    the two ton pink elephant in the room...banker & borrower, please just split the difference between fantasy 2005 worth and reality 2010 worth already! Jeez.  

    That or revert to my stimulus plan of 10k for everybody, that'll help people catch up on payments, and buy me back to Mexico as a bonus:)


    I would be happy with either plan! (none / 0) (#34)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:55:48 PM EST
    Who says 2010 worth is reality? (none / 0) (#42)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:27:39 PM EST
    Maybe 1970 worth is reality. Maybe 1950. What is worth, in reality? Is green a good color for my garage?

    Because it's 2010? (none / 0) (#44)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:37:44 PM EST
    And in hindsight we now see 2005 reality was on greed-crack...I don't know:)

    Good question though...very little of what we accept as reality seems real to me, I might not be the guy to ask:)...but I'm told people walking away from houses en masse is a bad thing for everybody, and the only way I see to avoid that is renegotiation by bank and borrower to 2010 reality/unreality, or fire up the printers at the mint for bailout checks, or become a nation of squatters...you guys can pick.


    Can any 21st Century Foreclosure... (none / 0) (#24)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:23:37 PM EST
    be called legitimate?  I'm thinking they all are fruit from a poisonous tree, to borrow a criminal justice phrase...all fraudulent, as they all stem from a fraud.  Robosign or no robosign, notorized or not...fraudulent across the board.

    A 3 month cease fire is not gonna change that...is BofA banking on our infantile attention spans?  I hope they don't think this bone will suffice.

    A 3 month cease fire brings us (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by MO Blue on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:01:11 PM EST
    into the new year with a new Congress. Just think of the opportunities that might exist then for the banksters.

    It might not even be that long... (none / 0) (#38)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:10:25 PM EST
    from the grifter's mouth....

    Bank of America spokesman Dan Frahm did not give a specific timeline for how long the halt will remain in place, but described the review as lasting for weeks, rather than months.

    "We will stop foreclosure sales until our assessment has been satisfactorily completed," he said. "Our ongoing assessment shows the basis for our past foreclosure decisions is accurate."

    Just a coffee break while they dot their i's and cross their t's, to avoid any more particularly grotesque black eyes when they get back to their dirty work.  


    I really think there is beginning to be (none / 0) (#31)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:44:37 PM EST
    a good case for that emerging. The fraud is so endemic to the very system. The bubble in prices was fueled because of this fraud, and those of us underwater now are there because of the bubble built on fraud.

    I'd like to see the legal eagles comment on a class action suit.


    Class action... (none / 0) (#33)
    by kdog on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 02:55:24 PM EST
    thats an idea.  Or a national mortgage payment strike, thats what we'd have already if this were Greece or France, instead of the land of the sheep with visions of Thurston Howell III in their empty heads.

    Yves Smith has a good post (none / 0) (#39)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 03:18:50 PM EST
    on possible remedies to the big picture problem. See the last part of her post.

    Her remedy #3 is much like I propose - mass principal reductions amounting to some kind of a lender-borrower split of the underwater amount. The underwater amount was caused by the fraud in the system that inflated the bubble. There is no reason the borrower should have to pay the price alone.

    This would have the added benefit of stimulating the economy. In fact, as I have said before, it is a necessary condition for demand based economic recovery.

    So is this a good time to buy a house (none / 0) (#51)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 06:15:58 PM EST
    or not? What effect will the freezes have on home market prices? Will it be harder to get mortgages or have no effect?

    I'm sure it depends on where you are (none / 0) (#52)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 07:28:16 PM EST
    I doubt prices in CA and FL have hit bottom yet. CO is probably more  stable, but nit depends on the area there too. HuffPo had a map the other day that showed the density of foreclosures in various parts of the country. I would hold off on buying in a high foreclosure area- prices are going to be unstable there for a long time.

    I'll see if I can find a link to that map. It was nicely done.


    To be clear, I'd be afraid to buy (none / 0) (#53)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 07:32:34 PM EST
    In a high foreclosure market because prices are likely to drop again. also, i can tell you from experience it is depressing to live on a street with foreclosed houses all around. But it is true you would get a better price. So it depends to some extent on how much you care if your house retains value. If it is going to be a long term home, find one you love and go for it, and hope others do the same in the neighborhood.

    Here is a good interactive map (none / 0) (#54)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 07:54:05 PM EST
    Would you be comfortable (none / 0) (#56)
    by beefeater on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 08:29:30 PM EST
    with any title opinion right now? Will any reasonable company issue TI at this time? That's what I mean by killing any recovery, You can't sell, others are afraid to buy.

    OT to Ruffian: (none / 0) (#55)
    by oculus on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 08:03:01 PM EST
    Just finished listening to Campbell Scott reading The Reader. A do not miss

    That sounds like a little bit of heaven (none / 0) (#57)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 08, 2010 at 08:51:43 PM EST

    Here's another good listen: (none / 0) (#61)
    by oculus on Sat Oct 09, 2010 at 02:53:27 AM EST
    "Candide," by Voltaire, narrated by Donal Donnelly.

    Also, Jeremy Irons reading "Lolita."  


    Foreclosure SALES are being stopped (none / 0) (#65)
    by Inspector Gadget on Sun Oct 10, 2010 at 12:31:37 AM EST
    NOT Foreclosures. The sales are meeting up with homes being handed right back to the banks because people are not showing up for the auctions.

    Banks are continuing to foreclose, especially in the states where the courts don't have to be the final approval that all proper steps were taken to get there.