Thursday, December 06, 2007

Mortgage Crisis Deepens 
Fools, fraudsters, hardest hit.

Today, Ms. Costa and other former Message of Peace parishioners claim that Mr. Santos was a key part of a mostly Brazilian ring that allegedly conspired to defraud people by persuading them to buy homes they couldn't afford. Ms. Costa, the housekeeper, secured a $713,000 sub-prime mortgage. In another instance, a Brazilian baby sitter borrowed $495,000. Now, the home buyers are beset by foreclosures and additional stains on their already-tainted credit.

Lenders and their dumbass shareholders deserve to lose every penny in these loans.
Various immigrant groups have long been subject to financial scams.

Various immigrant groups, apparently, are made up of ignorant dweebs who can't be bothered to be their own judge of what they can and cannot afford and think that America is here to offer them a free lunch. Maybe we should deport some of them. They're mucking up the gene pool here.

My mom's an immigrant, and she didn't fall for this stupidity. What's their excuse?

In summer of 2005, Ms. Costa and her husband, Samir Abdelnur, agreed with Mr. Santos to start house hunting. The first thing he did was give Ms. Costa several blank forms to sign, she says.

Mr. Abdelnur, a taxi driver at the time, earned $4,000 a month, twice as much as his wife. But his credit was weaker, so he says that Mr. Santos advised them to buy a house in Ms. Costa's name. Her FICO credit score at the time was 585, which placed her in the subprime range.

Mr. Santos introduced the couple to Suzel Serafim, a Brazilian real-estate agent. Ms. Costa says Ms. Serafim offered to add Ms. Costa's name to her personal credit-card account to help boost the buyer's credit score. When contacted for comment, Ms. Serafim confirmed that she had added Ms. Costa to her credit card. "I helped her," she said. (A spokesman for the National Association of Realtors, a trade group, says that such a practice amounts to misrepresentation.)

Ms. Costa's credit report from the time shows her as an authorized user of another person's credit card.

The couple says they told the agent and loan officer that they could afford a monthly mortgage payment of $3,500. Ms. Serafim and Mr. Santos steered the couple to Contra Costa County, across the bay from San Francisco. Ms. Costa and her husband chose a remodeled single-story, three-bedroom house in the town of Hercules. Mr. Santos said they would get a cash incentive at closing to help pay for repairs and any appliances they needed. Ms. Costa recalls him telling her, "Everyone who buys gets $20,000 back. I did."

But first, says Ms. Costa, the couple needed to find $5,000 to make a deposit on the house, listed at $688,000. Ms. Costa says she borrowed $3,000 from her father and another $2,000 from Ms. Serafim. Such assistance from a real-estate agent is improper, lawyers say, because it deceives the lender about the borrower's ability to afford the house.

The more of this rottenness that airs out, the better. Sunlight is the best disinfectant.

Liquidate the subprime lenders. Liquidate the homeowners that leveraged themselves and committed fraud to make a quick buck. Call the roller of big cigars. Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone. Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone.

Splash, out


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