Sonoma Housing Bubble

Pulling the cork out of Sonoma's bubbly housing foolishness

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Wave of Foreclosures & Crazy Landlords

(Press Democrat) "Police have arrested a Newark area landlord who allegedly rammed his Hummer into a renter's house, claiming the tenants were behind on their rent."

"New Castle County Police spokesman Cpl. Trinidad Navarro said the 30-year-old landlord crashed the SUV into a home on Lute Court in Harmony Woods about 3 a.m. Thursday."

"The landlord was charged with endangering the welfare of those inside, reckless driving and harassment, among other charges."

(From: Voice of San Diego) "More and more, unsuspecting tenants -- some who decided to rent to avoid the instability of the region's home prices -- arrive home to a notice on the front door. They're being evicted; their landlords have lost their homes."

"As much as one-quarter of the single-family homes in foreclosure in California have renters occupying them, according to an estimate from the California Apartment Association, an organization of rental property owners. That doesn't account for tenants of foreclosed apartment buildings or duplexes."

"That renters have become increasingly affected by foreclosure has caught the eye of a national homelessness advocacy group, whose recent report focuses on the "invisible victims" of foreclosure. A survey of homeless service providers nationwide reveals a growing number of applicants for assistance who were kicked out of their rental houses or condos because their landlords were in foreclosure."

"The displaced renter adds another face to the column of victims of mortgage fraud. Such displaced renters are usually in the dark about the financial situation that led their landlords to foreclosure."

'"It's a bad situation for good tenants to be in foreclosed properties," said Carlsbad eviction attorney James Burmeister. "A lot of these tenants are suddenly getting an eviction and then the tenant's the one losing his house, with his family and his kids and his school district and paying his rent on time."'

"Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill into law in July to extend the amount of time such tenants are given before they must vacate the house from 30 days to 60 days."

"Homeowners who live in their house are only entitled to three days once the bank has repossessed the house before they're evicted. Tenants get at least 60 days to stay there, and they don't have to pay rent."

(Press Democrat) "Sonoma County's housing market is saturated with bank-owned properties and by homeowners who are attempting to sell and avoid foreclosure, driving down property values in many areas."

"Every week, more than 100 borrowers in Sonoma County fell behind on payments or stopped paying mortgages, triple the number from a year ago."

"Of the borrowers in default, only 22 percent emerge from the foreclosure process by bringing their payments current, refinancing, or selling the home and paying off what they owe, DataQuick reported. A year ago, it was about 52 percent."

"Lenders seized a record 788 homes in foreclosure in Sonoma County during the second quarter, up 46 percent from the first quarter and nearly five times the total from a year ago, DataQuick reported Tuesday. Every week, lenders took back more than 60 homes from borrowers who had stopped paying their mortgages."

"Lenders sent 1,376 default notices, the first step in the foreclosure process, down 1.1 percent from the record 1,392 default notices in the first quarter."

"Analysts, however, warned that the wave of foreclosures will likely continue to rise in Sonoma County this year and potentially into 2009."

"'I have never seen this many of them in the 20 years I've been in this business. There appears to be no change in the immediate horizon," said John Binns, a CPS agent specializing in selling bank-owned homes."


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