Like many of us, I am sure you too are wondering how bad the housing and Real Estate market is right now. You may own a home or some income property, or maybe you own one of the millions and billions of condos that have been built, converted and sold over value in the past 5 years. It is you, who has been propping up the US economy (in addition to the war in Iraq, which does a lot for the economy too) for the past 5 years and just to thank you, the banks and financial loan companies set the terms on ARM loans (adjustable rate loans that move with the market after a initial low intro rate for 1, 3, 5 or 7 years) set the terms for a very short time on all the ARM loans so that the forclosures would start rolling in right about now. So the housing market and real estate in general is a bit fucked right now, and they have pulled in the reigns on those adjustable rate loans which were targeted at below prime level customers. (people with low credit ratings and little or no cash on hand for a down payment. So guess what? No one is buying anything now. The number of people who can afford homes hasn’t changed or grown at all, and they all have either refinanced or moved within the past 5 years. And the people who had never been able to afford to get a loan or own a home one can’t again now either.
So the banking and financial loan companies notice their closings on new homes are down, and thus the revenue from them. They think that it isn’t a mater of the market being fucked due to how they set up the loans in the first place, they think it is because they aren’t pushing hard enough. They just need to push people harder, advertise more and force more through the pipeline even if it means deceptive tactics. Think I am making this up? I’m not. Here are 2 examples from my own life:
1. I get the same page in my morgage statement every month offering me a “free” refinance on a loan. Well it turns out it is only on their worst product which has the highest rate of default and makes all the money for the bank and none for the consumer. It’s only valid on an “interest only” loan. Fuckers.
2. Today while walking to the train I got stopped by a very nervous looking attractive young guy who claims that he wanted to ask me out for coffee sometime. Well, no one does this to someone who looks like me. Trust me, I had old jeans on, gym shoes, no makeup and I am a bit fat on top of all that. I was just trying to get into the office to get some work done today. (It’s obvious at this point I rarely meet in person with clients) This fairly attractive and very nervous guy would *never* have interest in me in a million years. I knew that and had to work hard to not laugh at him because it was obvious. He did his thing, I told him I have a boyfriend (of which I actually do, but would have told him regardless) and then he said, well, if you change your mind, let me give yo my card. Guess what it said? Banking Loan Consultant – Home Loans – Washington Mutual Home Loans For an office that was not even near the EL in Oak Park. It was for an office on Clybourn in Chicago, over a 1/2 hr away. The back of the card had a list of 9 things needed for a home loan application. This schmuck thought he could pick up working professional women on the way to the train in Oak Park (where property values have increased a lot in the past decade) and turn them into clients? Not only is that disgusting, it doesn’t work. Especially since there are 500 condos for sale in Oak Park because it is completley over-developed and no one wants to buy any of them. The people who would want them can’t get one now, because they can’t get a loan.
So a note to Washington Mutual (wamu): rather than send your loan sales reps out on wild goose chases inapropriatley propositioning women on their way to the train, and trying to deceptivley get home owners to refinance into a dangerous and decieving “interest only” loan, why don’t you lower your rates and your credit requirements on the 30 year fixed loans so that low income people with less than perfect credit or no credit can afford them? Then you will have a landslide of new loans instead of a landslide of people hating your company and blogging about it on the internet for everyone to see.