Mortgage? What Mortgage?
I wish I could say this surprises me, but it doesn't. An interesting poll performed by Bankrate.com (Nasdaq: RATE) reveals some pretty disturbing realities about American borrowers. The poll, discussed in detail here, found that a full third of borrowers had no idea what kind of mortgage they held.
Worse yet, 58% of ARM borrowers had no idea what they were going to do when the rate ratchets upward. Thirty-six percent of respondents said they planned to refinance into a long-term fixed mortgage, but for many of these borrowers, that may be tough, given the new tightening of lending standards in the face of the fallout at subprimes like Novastar Financial (NYSE: NFI), New Century Financial, and Countrywide Financial (NYSE: CFC).
And, now ... Cue the victim chorus. Here's an example of the kind of bogus heartstring pluckers we can expect from the press. This Washington Post tearjerker carried a subhead reading "Economic Success Story Turns Sour ..."