“Banks Stole Christmas.”

From the NY Daily News:

Bank protesters say predatory loans threatening to make them homeless

Gloria Knight hasn’t been able to heat her home to a comfortable temperature this winter.

The 64-year-old Brooklyn woman also keeps her modest, three-bedroom house in East New York dark most nights to save on electricity bills – and has even been skipping meals.

“I’m trying to be very economical and stay within my budget,” she said. “But that means a lot of sacrifice.”

On Monday, Knight joined about two dozen homeowners in a protest outside a Washington Mutual bank branch in Manhattan, where many say they took out predatory loans.

They demanded that bank officials meet with them to restructure their loan packages – and they held signs declaring the “Banks Stole Christmas.”

For Knight, a pastor who relies on Social Security for income, this is a new and harsh reality since the interest rate on her mortgage recently ballooned from 9% to 18%.

She is among the thousands of New Yorkers who fear they will be left homeless because of the subprime mess.

As teaser rates are reset monthly, foreclosures in the city – particularly in low-income parts of Queens and Brooklyn – keep rising.

Milagros Munoz, a 46-year-old mother of three from Brooklyn, said she is buckling under the pressure of paying $4,100 a month for two loans on her East New York house.

Munoz said she was initially given low interest rates when her mortgage broker lied on her loan application – stating her monthly income as $14,000 – without her knowledge.

She doesn’t earn anything close to that as a dental assistant.

“I’m on a financial freeze,” Munoz said. “I can’t go anywhere or do anything. When my rate went up, all I kept asking myself was, ‘How am I going to get through today with what I have to pay?'”

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27 Responses to “Banks Stole Christmas.”

  1. reinvestor101 says:

    Today is Christmas, so let’s be happy. Of course, we should be happy every day. Sure, there were a few people who bought off more house than they could chew, but this isn’t as pervasive as the press would like to portray. I’ll bet you the people in this story are enjoying Christmas in their houses and the bank will work out some relief for them. Everything will be just fine!


    Merry Christmas to all.
    As most here I’m not for a bailout of sheeple.
    But some of the stories posted lately show just how badly some people were taken.Not out buying suvs or putting in 60 thou pools.I know there are so many that it is impossible to sort out the good from the bad.Its a F**ken shame & I can not imagine the big banks & lenders were not aware what the hell was going on.Surly GS
    knew thats why the covered their a**.Now you would say with all the losses why would they
    give out loans they knew would default.Maybe they did think RE would keep going up & then they could get the properties with a profit.
    Americans on the street, lost their homes some due to greed,others plain stupid, the worst taken for a ride & lied to by brokers. This is not a normal cycle in RE just as the run up wasn’t.Up your % of declines people as I have 20% off peak on some up here already.This is coming to BC & train towns near you.What are we going to do with all these people some have no resources left expensive to move & rent(RE fees ,security,mover)its getting ugly out there
    & this is just the tip of the iceburg.Sorry about the doom & gloom on holiday but thats my thoughts on the post.In the spirit of Christmas maybe it is fitting to think of others less fortunate.

  3. BC Bob says:

    RE 101, yes 101 [back to 50.5 tomorrow],

    Off to church. I wish you and yours the best this holiday season.

    Cheers to all!!!

  4. Pebbles says:

    I don’t understand how a $14,000 monthly income was stated without her knowledge? She would have had to sign the application form, no?

  5. reinvestor101 says:

    3-BC Bob

    Have a Merry Christmas!

  6. gary says:

    Merry Christmas To All!

  7. Ann says:

    Thanks for posting that story, it’s good to remember that people were taken advantage of. Hopefully, they will all be able to settle somewhere safe after the fallout.

    Merry Christmas all.

  8. Confused In NJ says:

    The “Fish Stinks From The Head”. The current Government is bought and paid for by Special Interest Groups (many foreign), and no longer represents the people. Your vote is for either of two special interest groups, neither of whom will represent anything other then their own special interests. Democracy & Law are passe. Rather than “God Bless America”, we need “God Help America”. The one saving Grace is that 99% of the Government, will eventually burn in “Hell”, for all eternity.

  9. dreamtheaterr says:

    Merry Xmas to everyone!

  10. Clotpoll says:

    pebbles (5)-

    Most likely, the originator had this lady sign a blank application. Then, he filled in the blanks later. Sadly, that’s often how the mis-stated income scam works.

    Of course, any sane person wouldn’t sign a blank document and would ask to see the final mortgage workup before closing, so borrowers can’t be totally absolved of responsibility.


    Clot Agreed, responsibility yes.But how do we cope with so many with noware to go.As I said renting is ok but you need a good amount of cash to do it.I do not have the answer but just as surly as the #s & charts tell us of the coming storm this will be a result.Trying times for are once great nation.Yes once, confused is not confused at all & is dead on.Insurrection anyone?

  12. crossroads says:


    if your going into foreclosure you would stop paying your mortgage for I’m sure months in advance of being evicted. that would be your deposit. and if they learned their lesson they won’t rent a $4,000 a month dwelling. Oh the landlord might have the sense to make sure they can afford the rent.

  13. Clotpoll says:

    Mike (12)-

    I think the lower-to-middle class foreclosed will be able to shoehorn themselves into at least halfway decent rentals. Remember, there’s a glut of unsold homes offered for rent, and rents in many areas are declining as a result. A lot of landlords I’m in touch with lately don’t even bother with credit checks. Just get somebody in, and stop the bleeding. A lot of these landlords will also eat the RE fees (normally paid by tenants) in more desirable NJ communities.

    The landlord/tenant ecosystem always seems to find its own equilibrium during busts, and I don’t think it’ll be different this time around. Of course, the numbers of homeless people will uptick, further taxing already-stretched public resources. I feel badly for those who were living so close to the edge that foreclosure blasts them straight into homelessness.

    As far as insurrection goes, I’m beginning to rethink my position. The moderator over at housingpanic is rattling his saber and talking armed revolution. That dude is a certifiable douche, and if he’s for it, there must be something wrong with it. However, I guess it could also be a situation akin to the broken clock being right twice a day.

  14. Shore Guy says:

    # 9 “The one saving Grace is that 99% of the Government, will eventually burn in “Hell”, for all eternity.”

    Speaking of peace on Earth and goodwill to man, lol.

    #11 “Most likely, the originator had this lady sign a blank application”

    Although I feel badly for people who were taken advantge of, people who sign blank contracts are too gullible for their own good; a fool and his money are soon parted.

  15. Mr Doughnut says:

    The job losses from outsourcing caused fraud in the housing market. Few could buy homes so rules were bent. The forclosures will have few buyers to come in and save the day. As long as China,India,and others get our jobs the situation will worsen.

    We are entering a Great Depression not a Recession. You can’t outsource to cheap labor and expect the good times to roll.

  16. Mr Doughnut says:

    When they closed the factories and offices they closed down the US housing market.

  17. Clotpoll says:

    Shore (15)-

    I think our pal, Confused, posted here thinking it was the 700 Club blog.

    The Armageddon we constantly talk about is of a different type.

    Glad to see the apocalyptic worldview taking hold, though. :)

  18. syncmaster says:


    I’m in IT, at the epicenter of the latest round of offshoring. I, nor anyone I know, has lost their livelihood to offshoring. Some have lost positions but no one has remained unemployed.

    You are wrong.

  19. njpatient says:

    My cheers come late but no less hearty for that.

    Joy to all of you on this Christmas Day.

  20. Confused In NJ says:

    Plan would let seniors work to pay taxes By JIM FITZGERALD, Associated Press Writer
    Tue Dec 25, 1:38 PM ET

    GREENBURGH, N.Y. – Audrey Davison lives alone, gets a $620 Social Security check each month and worries about the sharply rising taxes on her four-bedroom house. Davison, 76, raised her family there and after 43 years, she really doesn’t want to leave Greenburgh.


    Greenburgh doesn’t want her to leave, either.

    The town is pushing a program that would let seniors work part-time, for $7 an hour, to help pay off some of their property taxes.

    “People shouldn’t have to sell their house, move away to a place with less taxes, leave behind their family and friends,” said Town Supervisor Paul Feiner.

    He envisions retired doctors mentoring schoolchildren, retired accountants helping with the town’s finances, retired lawyers offering their services for a discount. But there are plenty of less-skilled jobs that need doing, he said.

    “It’s not like we’re going to see grandma running the snowplow,” he said. “There are lots of things people can do for the town and it wouldn’t cost us that much to pay them.”

    The proposal has caused a stir in Greenburgh, a town of 90,000 in Westchester County, which has the nation’s third-highest homeowner property taxes. The plan would be unusual if not unique in New York, but similar programs are considered successes in Colorado, Massachusetts, South Carolina and elsewhere.

    Davison, who suffers from arthritis and sciatica and needs a walker to get around on her bad days, said she pays about $12,000 a year in property taxes — perhaps $2,000 to the town — and has already taken out a reverse mortgage to pay her bills.

    Talking to Feiner last week at the town senior center, she said, “I would work as long as it was a job where I could sit.”

    “You could be a receptionist!” Feiner said. “You could greet people right here, when they come in.”

    “That I would love,” Davison said.

    Scott Parkin, spokesman for the National Council on Aging, said the program sounded interesting, as long as it wasn’t limited to menial work. “It’s certainly in line with what we stand for, keeping seniors involved in work or volunteering as a part of healthy aging,” he said.

    Boulder County, Colo., pioneered a tax workoff program in 1986 for residents over 60 and now has about 250 applicants for the fewer than 100 openings, said spokeswoman Barbara Halpin. The work done by the seniors includes landscaping, gathering climate data, clipping newspapers and staffing the courthouse information booth.

    “Taxes aren’t that high out here, so even at $7 an hour people can burn off their county taxes pretty quickly,” Halpin said. She added that many stay in the program as volunteers after paying off their taxes.

    In Concord, Mass., Maria Casey of the personnel department said about 10 seniors get $8.50 an hour to work at research, data entry and groundskeeping. The program, started in 1999, “allows seniors to be able to work and be involved in the community, and the town benefits by their work,” she said.

    Feiner is suggesting creating about 25 slots for seniors and letting them work off $500 or so a year. His proposal faces some obstacles. If the wages earned are to be tax-free and directly credited to the property tax bill, the state Legislature would have to approve. In addition, unions would have to be convinced that the program is no threat to their members’ job security.

    Feiner is hoping for at least a pilot program next year.

    Eventually, he said, he would like to see the county and the local school districts adopt similar plans.

    “If we got seniors working for the schools, there might be a more intergenerational feeling there,” he said. “It might be easier to pass the school budgets.”

    Janet Goodman, a retired teacher and travel agent who was leading a knitting class at a Greenburgh community center, said paying the bills at her town house in Hartsdale, one of Greenburgh’s seven villages, is “a constant struggle.” She said she would gladly take part in a tax workoff program “as long as the work is interesting.”

    “You have to be creative,” she said

  21. chifi / children are -(NPV) says:

    Roubini looks like he just came off a serious bender. Shouldn’t this guy shower and comb before he hits the airwaves……they bring in a stiff to try and lighten up the interview….BUT NO ONE CAN OUTDO THE ROUBINATOR


  22. chifi / children are -(NPV) says:

    grim: I think my post was sent into the moderation fourth dimension of death…can you retrieve and unmoderate

  23. shakyjob says:

    Ok so if your friends get layed off in IT, how secure will they be in buying a house if they know they may have to find a new job in a different area in the very near future because they lost their job.

    Wtf, losing jobs to offshore is killing our economy. How can I have any confidence of dumping my entire savings into a house when I know my jobs going to get outsourced and I need to find a new job in the next few years.

    Its over people, you want to get ahead?? Sell your soul and invest in India and china and bow to them as the new super powers of the world.

    Dollars falling,
    Housing market is going bust
    Credit card market is next
    Foreign investors own chunks of our economy
    Engineering and IT Jobs are being offshored
    We are getting raped by an overinflated cost of oil by middle east.

    Its over, we have been raped and everyone else is running to the banks.

  24. BC Bob says:

    “We are getting raped by an overinflated cost of oil by middle east.”


    No. We are not getting raped. It’s a slam dunk for OPEC. You can’t always get what you want, you get what you deserve. How can you get raped when you pull up to the pump naked?

    Where is my buddy, re 101? It’s not over until we say it’s over.


  25. reinvestor101 says:


    Yeah, what this lying around shlt about? Damn right, it ain’t over till we say it’s over.

    That means the bull market in real estate has only just begun! It’s time kick azz and take names.

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