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HarryCaraysGhost (64.03)

NEED HELP!!! re-fi?



December 08, 2010 – Comments (52)

I was wondering if anyone who works in real estate, or anyone who has gone through refinancing would be willing to help me out?

Without giving too many details heres the crux of my situation.

Due to foreclousures I owe much more then my place is worth (had an appraisal and was floored by how much)

I have a 6.75% interest rate on a 30y fixed (and yes I did the right thing by putting 20% down)

My mortgage is right about the cutoff of the % of income needed to get into a government program which name escapes me.

Tried working with my bank, they would approve me to redo my loan, but when the appraisal came through that went out the window.

Tried working with my lender, they said they can't help since I have'nt been late or missed any payments.

(How messed up is that I'm being penalized, for being responsible WTF)

So my options are-

Start missing payments(and ruin my good credit)

Being late on payments(which I was told would not wreck my credit, this is probably the option I would go with but wanted to check with the Fool first)

Or, should I try one of the many Re-Fi into a lower rate ads I hear on the radio?

Really ticks me off that because I pay my bills, I'm having problems getting the help I need.

When I bought my place I was working a lot of O.T. Now depending on the amount of jobs in sometimes I'll get 4 days. So it's eating into my savings, I suppose they'll say why don't you sell some stocks, but the majority of my port is for the long term.

Sorry for the rant, but I'm really pissed off (and that's hard to do, I'm normally a pretty mellow fellow)


52 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On December 08, 2010 at 10:27 PM, 1277507302 wrote:

The banks have a screw loose.

I've been with my credit union for 27 years. They know I make $65 to $70K per year because they see the deposits. Have a 701 credit rating. I recently sold off some stock and paid a car loan in full, private ultrasound school loans in full, their $10K platinum card in full (then cancelled), and another $2K credit card (and cancelled). I decided that It would be best to have a credit card just for the convenience of it so I reapplied. $2K credit limit.

Good luck dealing with them.

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#2) On December 08, 2010 at 10:42 PM, Bethamphetamine (< 20) wrote:

I'm sorry to hear that... Have you considered maybe renting out your house to someone who can afford the mortgage payments and moving into a smaller apartment for yourself?  That way you can keep whittling away at the loan, but not have to pay for it yourself.  Of course, that all depends on your family situation, but it might make sense in the right circumstance.  

I was lucky enough to refinance right before everything came to a grinding halt, but it could have easily been rejected had I waited a few weeks.  Best of luck with the situation.

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#3) On December 08, 2010 at 11:27 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


Yes, the banks do suck. I'm writing this while biting my tounge. Out of respect for TMF I don't want an obscenity laced tirade to pour out.

I'm just glad I put my silver at a different banks saftey deposit box, it won't be listed on my income. (props to Chris Grailey)

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#4) On December 08, 2010 at 11:32 PM, SweetMircha (77.77) wrote:

I'm from Canada & not familiar with US borrowing policies and mortgage rates.

Somehow it seems to me that your 6.75% rate is kind of high.  Do you have mortgage brokers where you are?  They usually can get you a much better interest rate than what the bank will offer you directly.  I understand that the appraisal has come in far lower than what you'd paid for your house originally, due to the credit & housing crash.

Perhaps, there are private lenders that could re-finance your house at a lower interest rate if they have ready cash siiting with them in their bank account making only 1% bank interest on their savings.  They could turn around, pay off your existing principal & 3 month penalty and then re-mortgage it for you at say 3.5% instead of the 6.75% you're now paying.  They would, like the bank, put a lien against the house for the full amount of the new mortgage. They would be collecting then 3.5% compund interest on their money instead of 1% simple interest that they would be paid by the bank savings account.

Its a Win Win financially for the private lender  and also a Win for you because you mortgage rate and payment will drop substantially due to the lower interest re-financing.

I'd been a motel owner and had held the mortgage for the buyer of my motel. I made more money doing that and sitting on my butt, than I did some lean months working my butt off running the business.(a personal example of my suggestion)

I wish you the best of luck in coping with your crisis and, the very best of the holiday season. May you find a quick solution in the new year.

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#5) On December 08, 2010 at 11:44 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


Have you considered maybe renting out your house to someone who can afford the mortgage payments and moving into a smaller apartment for yourself?

Nah, I own a condo and since I did'nt overextend myself, the payment is comparable to rent.

Thing is my property taxes doubled(that makes sense with the devaluation of the property, right?)  Not the deal I signed up for.

So I'm not in dire straights, but any emergency health or job wise could wipe me out.

I'm trying to be proactive, and the banks inability to work with me is maddening.

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#6) On December 08, 2010 at 11:58 PM, isusan (< 20) wrote:

I think your best move right now would be to consult with an attorney & get their advice on your options & the possible ramifications based on the laws in your state. 

And file an appeal if those property taxes are accessed at any amount over that recent appraisal. It's easy to do & well worth the time. 

I hope this resolves well for you, best wishes.. 

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#7) On December 09, 2010 at 12:05 AM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


I guess that was my question, will a mortgage broker re-fi if you owe way more then the place is worth?

And I was hoping that the Fools would tell me some of the best ways to go about it, if that's a viable option.

Otherwise I gotta go with just sending in late payments so I can get what they said was a traditional distressed mortgage re-fi (I think)

Merry Christmas.

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#8) On December 09, 2010 at 12:16 AM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


Weird thing about being in a Condo Association, everyone who lives in the building has to make the appeal.

So even though I made my appeal, I was stuck with the rate.

I don't know if getting a copy of my personal appraisal and bringing it in would help.

Might be worth a shot.


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#9) On December 09, 2010 at 1:00 AM, Bethamphetamine (< 20) wrote:

I guess it's good that you aren't in dire straits, but it can be so stressful walking that line.  That is interesting to know about the condo association - did a lot of folks buy at the same time?  Maybe you'll find some strength in numbers.  

It might help to look up a homeowner advocacy program  -  I'm not sure where you are, but there's a lot of frustration with the banks at the moment (understatement of the year!) and they might be able to raise your case profile and keep some pressure on the bank.    Good luck!

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#10) On December 09, 2010 at 2:59 AM, rancidx3 (36.08) wrote:

Your loan needs to be 80% or lower than the appraised price depending on whether it is a condo or a house. As far as I know they dont' care about anything other than your LTV(loan to value). I know it sucks trying to get a refi when you are underwater. I tried getting it but I can't until the value of my property rises. Good luck. I really do hope you find a better option. I could use one too ...

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#11) On December 09, 2010 at 8:52 AM, ChrisGraley (28.69) wrote:

HCG, put the issue forward to your condo association for the appeal. I'm sure that trying to lower the property tax bill is in everyone else's interest as well. (Especially if you let them know that if you have to short-sell, their property values will go down farther.)

Take some of that silver and move it over to an account with Stop investing in equities for a while, but I wouldn't sell any positions unless you would normally be selling them.

Focus any additional money that you have in the account at goldmoney. This is basically just giving you a liquid investment so that you don't have to keep tapping into your other investments.

That doesn't solve your refi problem, but it may prolong it a bit.


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#12) On December 09, 2010 at 9:16 AM, Melaschasm (71.36) wrote:

Being late on payments(which I was told would not wreck my credit, this is probably the option I would go with but wanted to check with the Fool first)

Being late on payments will hurt your credit rating big time.  However, if you are dedicated to avoiding debt from now forward, who cares?

I recommend contacting some mortgage brokers, such as Churchill Mortgage.  Try to get a zero down refinance while your credit is still good.  You may end up with two new loans, one with a low rate, for 80% of the current value of your condo, the other for the rest at a higher rate.  This should result in a lower monthy payment. 

Good Luck!

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#13) On December 09, 2010 at 9:19 AM, lemoneater (56.76) wrote:

HarryCary, All I can offer is sympathy since I have no practical experience in this area.

If I remember correctly, Brickcityman was also trying to refi his home and wrote a blog about his efforts.


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#14) On December 09, 2010 at 10:10 AM, Griffin416 (99.97) wrote:

Call a mortgage broker about HARP loans. They can offer up to 125% of appraised value and your debt to income ratio can go up to 50%. With rates so low, if you re-finance, chances are you will save enough on interest payments that you will be able to make it.

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#15) On December 09, 2010 at 10:25 AM, brickcityman (< 20) wrote:

Great segway lemoneater...


yes I've been through all of this (and am still in the muck)... and have been priming another blog series (my third loan attempt appears to be making past the stages where the others failed so I've got alot of new things to report)...


I don't have much time at the moment, but here are a few points...


1.  The workout option your lender was talking about is probably HAMP.  I would definitely not try to "qualify" for HAMP by beng late on payments.  There's too much lava under that tightrope.

2.  The best thing going i have seen is HARP (but you have to have uncle sam as an investor I believe, see item 3), for someone without PMI (which I expect you don't have it since you mentioned putting down 20% in the first place) it allows you to go up to 125% of the appraised value.  The big hit with this is there aren't many lenders who are doing it...  and some that are are doing it at arms length (I'm looking at you quicken).  Right now I am working with I'll report more on that later.

3.  Step one for you needs to be understanding who owns your loan.  Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac both have web tools that allow you to determine if they are investors in your loan.  This is your stepping off point determining what options exist.  The feds have a website that pulls some of this info together I think its ""

4.  MOST IMPORTANT.  Do not, under any circumstances, accept at face value what anyone in the mortgage industry tells you.  90% or more of the "loan officers" I have spoken with do not really know the details of the programs available and they are also laboring under hectic work conditions which means you are not getting much focus (one i spoke with admitted to routinely juggling 60 or more applications).  Also they seldom have all the information necessary to determine what your exact situation is....  bottom line is they are front line filters, you need to work with them but know that they do not have all the answers.

5.  Same goes for appraisals, they are frequently wrong both objectively and subjectively...  I speak form personal experience as my recent appraisal came in 13% higher than one conducted just a week or two prior!!


... more to come

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#16) On December 09, 2010 at 10:56 AM, SweetMircha (77.77) wrote:

HarryCary, Lemoneater suggested the right person to get the best info and, lo & behold Brickcityman the recommendee pops right in on your behalf.  How wonderful and helpful members of TMF can be when you\re in real need of advice.  Fool on buddy. You're now on the right track.

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#17) On December 09, 2010 at 11:44 AM, davejh23 (< 20) wrote:

"I would definitely not try to "qualify" for HAMP by beng late on payments.  There's too much lava under that tightrope."

I agree...that's a risky bet.  I know several people that have tried this and they were still never able to work anything ended up in foreclosure. 

I'm not sure how this affects these gov't programs, but 30 year fixed rates have been rising rapidly recently...still well below 6.75%, but time could be running out.  Best of luck.

Where do you live?  In some areas, like Vegas, where condo prices are down 80%, it might not be worth holding on.  I'm generally opposed to walking away, but if I paid $150K for a condo now worth $25K, I'd certainly consider it...actually, I'd probably pay cash for a similar unit and then walk away on the original.

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#18) On December 09, 2010 at 4:53 PM, AltData (32.05) wrote:

You've gotten some purty good advice here.

I'm no expert, but I know who is.

Clark Howard

A plain English explanation of the homeowner bailout

Good luck with that. I myself have the enviable situation of having paid my last mortgage payment this year. Which rreminds me of a quote I learned once...

..."Wealtthy people miss one of life's greatest pleasures,

    paying the last installment."

Keep on keeping on. I know you'll get it done.

And to TrekRider59 in tthe #1 comment. That's great, no, more than great to pay off credit cards. But, there is a but; but canceling the cards will also negatively affect your credit rating.

A thing I've heard that's good to do with those cards, and this isn't a joke, is place them in a freezer bag filled  with water a put it in the back of your freezer. If and when you really need any of them, the process of thawing them out to get to them will also give you the time to think about if you do really need to use them.


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#19) On December 09, 2010 at 5:29 PM, anchak (99.90) wrote:

"When I bought my place I was working a lot of O.T. Now depending on the amount of jobs in sometimes I'll get 4 days. So it's eating into my savings"

This statement -qualifies you technically for a financial hardship - or change in income.


The key issue is that the 2 best options available are really motivated by existing lender/banks - ie they need to participate for you to take advantage

HARP : If your income more like Housing Debt Obligations/Income <31% - you will NOT qualify for a HARP.

Otherwise - call up the main big banks - and see if they'll refi your mortgage under a HARP


FHA Refi: There is a FHA product which allows lenders to write the value of the loan down to 97% of the current value of the home and refinance - but it needs to be a current Govt held loan  - so find out if your existing mortgage is an FHA also.

If your home value is very low - you will not get financing to possibly exceed 95% in this market - ie you need to then fork over cash to pay-off your existing mortgage.

Talk to your lender - and say that you are facing financial difficulty - and ask if they can put you in a short term Forbearance to reduce your current payments. You do not need to default for this - just a proof of reduction of income will suffice

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#20) On December 09, 2010 at 6:53 PM, rexlove (99.73) wrote:

Not sure what the difference is between the appraised value and amount you owe but if you could -  sell your stocks and pay down this principal difference. Maybe then you can re-finance at the lower rate. If you need the money back for investing - maybe you could then take out a home equity loan to use for buying stock.

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#21) On December 09, 2010 at 9:55 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:

I'm going to continue aswering these one by one,

Some good can come from my headaches for Foolanthropy.

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#22) On December 09, 2010 at 10:11 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


Thanks I'll have to start going to board meetings (yes, I'm a slacker whose never been :)

I think I'll be able to manage but my goal is not to just manage, I want to have a roof over my head, million in the bank for retirement.

And not eating cat food in old age (although not quite sure why I would'nt go with a can of tuna, pretty much the same price ; )

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#23) On December 09, 2010 at 10:30 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


I owe twice as much as what the appraisal came in at. But after talking with some other people. I was told that might not be accurate.

They used forclosures as their guide.

Keep on keepin' on. 

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#24) On December 09, 2010 at 11:00 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


For the most part I have'nt been buying equities, for all of 2010.

I booked my profits from buying in 2008, by selling the first time the dow hit 11,000.

I have a few stocks that I would sell if they hit a level that I got from my rudimental knowledge of charting.

(Damn you, binve why did you pique my interest in looking at squiggley lines : )

But I 'm pretty close to having a port that's for the long haul.

I'll check out the link.

Just wanted to say thanks, I've been a fan of Silver before I joined Caps (precious metal, industrial use sign me up)

Your blogs showed me the proper way to buy and hold Silver.


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#25) On December 09, 2010 at 11:11 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


That's what I'm going to fish around for. But was told to avoid any money up front. And to really crunch the #'s because I'm dealing with a small amount ( not to me, but that's what I hear :)

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#26) On December 09, 2010 at 11:25 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


Those were'nt options from me. Those were the options that the Citi rep gave me (I put in the radio one as a joke)

Right before I wrote this I was on the phone with a Citi rep telling me what happened.

Thus the rant.

I just can't believe that a bank employee would tell me my best option's were to not pay my bills. That was where my WTF came from.

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#27) On December 09, 2010 at 11:28 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


All I can offer is sympathy since I have no practical experience in this area

That makes two of us : )

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#28) On December 09, 2010 at 11:32 PM, brickcityman (< 20) wrote:

A few more things to kick in... 


As I stated before, HARP lets you go up to 125%, but that doesn't hold in all cases.  If you have existing PMI the PMI provider's have a say in this...  This webpage addresses some of these questions and has a nice chart summarizing the current guidelines from each PMI provider. (I can vouch for the data regarding RMIC but not the others)  This webpage has a searchable listing of HARP lenders, but again you need to check eligibility. has links to help assess that, for that matter they also apparently offer free advice with a live person.  They might be able to illuminate the HAMP rules better.


As other people mentioned bringing cash in to closing is an option, but I wouldn't bank on being able to tap your equity all that easily afterwards.  I'm not sure which lenders are good for 80/20s, I've never researched them much but that may still be an option.


Here's what I would do...


1.  Get a copy of your appraisal (you are entitled to it since you paid for it) and go over it with a fine tooth comb.  Cross-check measurements, look at the comps they selected and how they rated them, do a search on or a local realtors page to see if you can find other comps that compare more favorably.  ...  In my case I found glaring measurement errors in my first set of schematics and I also found dubious comp evaluations (favoring lower end sales that were older).


2.  If you think you have a leg to stand on by all means let your lender know you would like to file a rebuttal.  Its probably a long shot but it doesn't cost you anything and if you can make a persuasive case then maybe it'll go somewhere.  Also if you have a real bad appraisal at least you can use it to get your taxes lowered!


3.  If you are close to any of the alternative loan programs mentioned above (FHA, HARP) and are relatively sure you will qualify then by all means start making calls / web inquires (I'll provide a list of references below).


4.  If you do pursue another application realize that pretty much all of these places are backlogged and chaotic.  You should be pretty familiar with the sorts of documentation they require so have it all ready to go (in .pdf format, ready to transmit as needed).  This will earn you brownie points with your main point of contact. 


5.  If/when you have another appraisal be sure to put your best foot forward. Pretend you are giving a guided tour to a prospective buyer, because in a sense you are.


This means tidying up and organizing your entire house.  If you have any yardwork to do, do it.  If you have any home repair projects 1/2 done finish them or get them out of the way somehow.  You need all areas of your home to be accessible and looking their best (remember there will be pictures taken).   


You also need to prepare.  Have a list of all upgrades and major maintenance done recently.   This is a two part thing, you need to show that your home has been well maintained and you also want to give the impression that you are winning at "keeping up with the joneses".  I know, you may be gritting your teeth right now, but thats just the way it is.


Finally, plan to be there for the entire appraisal.  Stick with the appraiser and be prepared to answer questions.  You can't really discuss value all that much with the appraiser (they are precluded from it to a certain extent).  But if you have serious gripes with a previous appraisal by all means let them know that you are paying close attention.  ...  This might mean pre-emptively telling them about your estimate for $/ft based on comps you researched or giving them your estimation of square footage.  Just know that they have retain a decorum of independence in this process, so there's not alot you will be able to discuss.  Also you don't want to take this too far and make them feel defensive.  Just make sure they know that you've been around this bend once before.




Your Loan Processor

Now dealing with your loan officer/processor/insert-title-here...  This unfortunately is luck of the draw.  I've dealt with some very energetic and helpful people, and I've dealt with some slimy slugs... and the worst part is once you've got one you're pretty much stuck with them.  The best you can hope to do is hold up your end of the bargain... 


Remember that these people are very busy, don't waste their time on the phone while you look for paperwork, don't complain to them about things they can't control.  Do try to give them all the documentation they need as soon as possible and do treat their time as valuable as you treat your own.  And do try to find out what method of communication and time periods are best to contact them (most prefer email, and no-one likes having new work pop up right before they go home for the night).


First Hand Impressions of Select Lenders:


BofA:  My current servicer, but that doesn't mean jack (e.g. you won't get any favors for keeping business with them).  Their rates tend to be a little higher, I also chronicled my issues with one of their sales people on my blog.  I'd look elsewhere if I were you.

Quicken:  The loan rep I spoke with gave me in-accurate information regarding the rules of the HARP program.  He said PMI precludes HARP, which is not true.  I thought this funny since they got top billing on the freddie mac HARP listing.  My neighbor has used them for streamline refis and has been happy with them, so my experience could have been unique.

Regions Financial:  Heard good things through a friend, loan rep was friendly and seemed knowledgeable.  Opted not to pursue early on due to more favorable program features advertised by BofA (the fact that these were later uncovered as lies is unfortunate).  On balance their FHA programs were somewhere between the cost of the "big" banks and the discount places you'll find on the web.  Recommended by trusted friend who was in process at the time.  Fairly happy with their service and process.  Bum appraisal kept me from progressing (note the best they can do is FHA).  My friend is closing soon or may already have, his process has drawn out a little longer than it should have but this is to be expected.  One of the few multi-state HARP lenders that actually seems to embrace the program.  Process appears to be efficient.  Loan rep is great so far.  Currently in process with these guys and will report out on my blog once I know we are fully on a path to closure (don't want to jinx it).  Note they are also one of the few I have found that have a decent "float down" option advertised.

...The ones that call you after you've had your credit pulled...:  There have been at least a 1/2 dozen different companies that have called since my first official loan application.  These companies somehow get reports of credit check activity or something and use it to determine you are in the market for a loan.  I've spent a little time on the phone with some of them and all seem really fly-by-night-ish.  

BancorpSouth:  This was my original lender.  I was quite happy with them the first time through.  When I contacted my old loan officer about a refi I think I got shuffled to the bottom of the stack one too many times and got lost in their process before things really got started.  Instead of pressing I looked elsewhere.  It should be noted that they have been known to do float downs at no cost ;-)


... General Impressions...  Paying more does not get you better service.  If anything I've found that the cut-rate brokers tend to actually be better from an efficiency perspective.


Bottom line:


Try to be objective about your chances of getting approved before going forward (there's no sense blowing more cash on appraisals if you don't have a good leg to stand on).  I'd recommend discussing details with someone you trust so you can get another P.O.V.  This might also be a good time to get ahold of your realtor (or one you hear good things about) and see what they can tell you about valuation and your local market.


If you think HARP will work for you pursue it, if your LTV is really out of whack investigate if the modification path might be right, but be careful.  I've seen some news stories alluding to lenders not holding up their end of the deal on HAMPs. 


Keep in mind that many of the refinance options right now have some kind of public backing behind them...  This does not mean you as a citizen are entitled, but it does mean that the rules should be a bit less opaque than they might otherwise be.


Above all else remember...  You are holding up your end of the bargain, you are making your payments and actively managing your finances.  No one is doing you a favor by refinancing your loan they are engaging in a mutually beneficial business transaction.  

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#29) On December 09, 2010 at 11:36 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


That's the plan, I have a huge home work assignment ahead of me.

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#30) On December 09, 2010 at 11:49 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


I live in the Chicagoland area, and bought my place at the height of the bubble. so that's why I'm having problems now (overpaid big time)

Never considered walking away, but that is something I should keep in the back of my mind.

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#31) On December 10, 2010 at 12:13 AM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


Congrats man,

That was  my dream, no mortgage at 55, (basically paying off a 30 yr in 20 yr or sooner.

Millionare at 65 or sooner : )

For anyone who's made it this far I give a few more details on the boards.

I don't feel comfortable posting a link. But it's pretty easy to find if you know how.

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#32) On December 10, 2010 at 12:28 AM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


I did'nt skip over you, it's just going to take some time to absorb eveything.

I'ts late now, but I plan on reading everything you've written on the subject this weekend.

Normally I have to read things twice to get it through my thick skull, so I'm dedicating Saturday morning to reading your blogs.

Thank you very much.

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#33) On December 10, 2010 at 12:32 AM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:



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#34) On December 10, 2010 at 12:48 AM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


It was a definite change of income, somehow fannie mae thinks it was'nt enough of a change.

The whole thing is really frustrating. When all I want is a plan that would ensure that they would get their money.

What I figured was, if I had a good month at work pay extra, bad month pay the minimum.

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#35) On December 10, 2010 at 12:54 AM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


I don't know about that, has a vicious circle feel about it.


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#36) On December 10, 2010 at 12:57 AM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


I hope you put this in your following tab, I' ll comment this weekend.


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#37) On December 10, 2010 at 7:31 AM, brickcityman (< 20) wrote:



Sure did and I'll be happy to keep posting... 


As I said earlier everything I've learned about this has been through recent experience.  Of course that means my experience is somewhat limited by my situation, which is why I'm more familiar with HARP and FHA than say HAMP.  


There may be some fellow Fools with connections to the industry or more broad knowledge,  but I'm glad to bounce ideas around and help if I can.

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#38) On December 10, 2010 at 4:58 PM, djshagggyd (< 20) wrote:

Dr. Gonzo- 

I've distracted the Federalis long enough to come up for air and say hello.

Unfortunately I didn't have time to read your blog. Though I wish you the best of luck my friend!

Let me know when you think it's safe to re-enter the grid.

Until then... please send my regards to the ghost of Ron Santo.

Talk to you soon friend,


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#39) On December 10, 2010 at 9:50 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:

Mr. Shagggy D.

Excellant news on that fraud of a case my freind.

It was obvious that the Government was throwing it's weight around, because of two things.And put up this bogus persercution because thats all the Feds know how to do is throw out trumped up charges and with unlimited resources ultimately send good men such as yourself to a 6x6 hole for the rest of their lives.

First reason- FEAR- They feared your ability to tell the truth through your music. They feared that when the when the truth is out the unwashed masses may riot and remove thier beloved power. 

Second reason- LOATHING-  They loathe creativity and the freedom of mind which such creativity brings.

This was a tough case to crack my freind, but with some late nights( aided by a natural stimulant found in the leaves of a rare plant from the the depths of the rain forest. I was able to hook up with some rebels while there, and mapped out plans for a political coup. But thats a story for another day)

much undercover was neccesary, but by monitoring Chicagos prostitution and drug circles. I have more then enough dirt on Governmental higher ups, that if your ever bothered again they would all fall like so many dominos.

Some may say this is blackmail, I say it is justice.

So yes my freind be free, tell your truth, and enrich the lives of those around you.

For any who would like to know the details of this sordid Injustice, it may be found here-

Neutral Tandem: TNDM (is giving me a headache)

~Dr. Gonzo. Attorney at large.

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#40) On December 11, 2010 at 4:42 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


Still not done reading, but after posting this-

I might need to figure out some other options.

I've gotten more staight talk from the Fools in a day, then six months of dealing with the banks.

Re- Fi might not be my best option (but that lower payment would be very helpful)

I don't know if you post on the boards, but it seems like some folks have some expertise. Still researching and trying to come to a reasonable solution. (Oh and if you'd like to put in a request  I would set you up)

I'll post again and hope you do to.

Best of luck to both of us.


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#41) On December 12, 2010 at 10:19 AM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:

I'm thinking my best options for now are to go with your first and second points and see where that takes me.

The rep from citi said I was at 31% of income to mortgage, so I'm confused as to why Fannie mae turned me down.

If I had to restart the process, that would'nt be the case, I've actually gotten a few checks with O.T lately (Hallellujah :)


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#42) On December 12, 2010 at 2:56 PM, brickcityman (< 20) wrote:

Hi again,


Sorry, I don't ever use the boards...  Guess I've always figured the blogs were good enough.


Anyway its not so much mortgage to income, its total debt payments to income.  That's why when you file an application they give you a sheet derived from your credit report that lists all your active accounts as well as the payments associated with each.  By signing you are essentially agreeing that the debts listed are the only ones that they have to consider.


If you were turned down for something other than appraised value then by all means ask for a rationale (they should cite all underwriting rules that you violate).  I know that Amerisave sends you a letter/report detailing why, similarly they should also give you a report based on your credit file that indicates what factors are negatively impacting your credit.


One thing to note is that soemtimes the data in credit reports can be quite old...  If they are hitting you on too much debt servicing, but you have since retired some of it, you may be able to provide them supplemental information to clear things up.


Personally I'm leary fo dealing with the major banks now (BAC, CITI, JPM).  They charge premium rates for sub-premium service.  If you exhaust their rebuttal processes without getting anywhere (which is likely I would guess), but feel you could still qualify then start looking into some of the other alternatives I listed. 


Also, I've been told this so many times it seems cliche, but don't overlook credit unions in your area.  Since they are usually member/employee owned they tend to be a little more customer friendly, and to me there's something to be said for sitting across the table from someone when your stuck in a gray area.



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#43) On December 12, 2010 at 3:20 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


I don't use the boards much either, but I put more details there.

Not that I care if anybody that I interact with knows. (I just worry about people lurking in the shadows with ill intentions)

But heres what I said-

Thank you all for your replies.I wish I would have checked with the Fool before I started the process

I was kind of upset last night since I had just gotten off the phone with a Citi rep. He was really nice and helpful but I just couldn't believe those were the options that he presented me. None of which seem attractive (the radio one was mine, kind of a joke). And I was just shocked that a bank employee was telling me not to pay my bills, thats what I thought was backwards.

I don't think I was very clear on what actually happened, (thats what I get for typing without thinking my blog through for at least a day)

About six months ago, I wanted to re-fi into a lower rate so I went to my credit union and they referred me to a the branch that covers mortgages in my area.

Well the first thing they asked was if my condo board was an FHA approved loan (I think, sorry my memory sucks) What the board said was they had right of first approval, well this was not a good thing since the guy I was dealing with told me that would cause problems.

After doing all the paperwork, and credit checks, My credit union said that they would back the loan. But the appraisal had not happenned yet.

Yes you are correct that the comparisons were of foreclousures, I live in a pretty big complex with muliple buildings, and most people who live there would be considered lower middle class. I definately over paid. It was at the height of the housing bubble, I checked and just a few years earlier a one-bedroom condo like mine was going for $60 grand.

Way I saw it was I had the money due to an inheritance, and when I added up how much I spent on rent in my life it was close to $32 grand.
So I pulled the trigger.

So the appraisal came in at average $35. My credit union called and said they could'nt take on that much risk. Even though I personally was'nt a risk theres no way they could justify haveing that on the books(Which I totally get).

The advice given was for me to contact my lender and mention the homeowners underwater act(again from memory so please correct if wrong)
So I did that and over a couple of months, was able too get all the parerwork in(no delay on my part, the process just goes at a snails pace)

Finally I was told that I was on track to be approved, it would have lowered my rate to about 5.6%. But for whatever reason Fannie Mae denied my request, which I don't understand. Since my income is at 31% of my mortgage. So I don'tknow what happened there.

One other thing I probably would'nt have even done this. But the year after I moved in my property taxes doubled, then there was a special association fee to install sprinklers.

So I've only been paying the amount I originally agreed to for one year, just feels like I'm getting hammered from all sides. And then to have the banks make me jump through hoops for six months while telling me that something could be done is what led to my rant.

Thank you all for your wonderful advice, I'll be referencing this and the blog on Caps before I take any further action.

Hope everyone has a happy,healthy holiday season.


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#44) On December 12, 2010 at 10:20 PM, brickcityman (< 20) wrote:

Was the property tax hike due to the government trying to cash in on the real-estate boom?  ...  Remember you now have an appraisal that might help with that. 


You should also make sure that your property status is correct with the tax assessors...  In my area if the property is not listed as a primary residence the tax rate is effectively double.  The people I bought my home from had moved to another place and consequently I had to correct the property status with the tax assessor (which only took two years... but that's another story).


I just reviewed my appraisal forms, and the standard form has a specific question as to whether REOs are a factor in the area...  its not clear whether this is meant to help or hurt you (e.g. whether there is guidance on how they should be weighted), but I would pay special attention to that field, as well as any appraiser comments related to it...  I'm not sure how good historical MLS data tends to be, but based on recent experience it appears to be imperfect (both appraisals have said that my home has not changed hands in the past 36 months, but this of course untrue).


One more thought...  Given that you have a condo association I wonder if they might provide a handy resource for validating information on the appraisal?  ... Presumably you could have them confirm details of all comps from your complex and identify any that might have been missed.


Also, and this is a bit of a stretch, If you have another appraisal I would be curious if there are any negative factors impacting your valuation where the condo association bears any responsibility...  I'm not advocating trying to "make your problems 'their problems'"; just someting I'm not familiar with and curious about. 


Best of luck 





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#45) On December 12, 2010 at 11:43 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:

Was the property tax hike due to the government trying to cash in on the real-estate boom?  ... 

Nah, it's more due to the fact that Chicago and the whole state of Illinois are broke. So they can't lower propety taxes even when they are unfair.

What I was told by the boad was to wait it out, the valuations should start creeping up.

I'm going to do your first two steps, since that costs me nothing, and see if I can get that 5.6%

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#46) On December 13, 2010 at 9:39 AM, miteycasey (29.04) wrote:

Try to get a re-fi for 1/2, or 3/4, the loan and pay the other off.

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#47) On December 14, 2010 at 8:45 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


Hmmmm, I 'll have to look into that, might be an option depending on the #'s.

My shop shuts down from Christmas to New Years, so I'll have some time to make some phone calls based on the great advice I've gotten here. (much kudos to brickcityman.)

Merry Cristmas to all.

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#49) On December 15, 2010 at 11:04 PM, SweetMircha (77.77) wrote:

I knew that sooner or later  the Spammer would kick in his own advice. I recommend that you DON'T follow his Recommendation though. You'll only end up with Coach Purses and nothing to put into them for the time being.

I'm glad to see that you're getting some excellent advice.

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#50) On December 16, 2010 at 1:37 PM, djshagggyd (< 20) wrote:



I didn't see your response until just now. (and I forgot I posted my response to you here rather than on my TNDM blog).

Hope you are making progress on your re-fi situation! I would offer some input, but it would probably be in your best interest if I didn't since I would have no idea what I'm talking about! Instead, I'll just keep my fingers crossed for you.

Merry Christmas!



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#51) On December 16, 2010 at 9:14 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


I'm glad you liked my reply, It was fun writing it. Brought out my inner Hunter S. Thompson.

My situation is looking brighter, If the economy continues to slowly get better. I think I'll be alright since for the last month I've been getting 40 or more hours. I just happened to start the process when I was getting like 32 (and, I was very grateful for those 32, beats the alternative).

I wanted to ask either you, or Jeff If you need another player for Fantasy Baseball, I would love to play. ( not sure what your league situation is so I figured I'd ask).

Always great to hear from you, and I'll show up to a show sometime, just not sure when.

All the best

~ John


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#52) On December 16, 2010 at 9:24 PM, HarryCaraysGhost (64.03) wrote:


But there the most popular, most stylish and avant-garde.

Who am I to resist... ; )

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