Head of FDIC Supports Loan Write-Downs

The possibility of solving the underwater mortgage problem by writing down principal has been deemed politically impossible by the Obama administration, but some government officials see write-downs as the best long-term solution.

One of the most outspoken supporters of write-downs is Federal Deposit Insurance Chair Sheila Bair. This week, she called underwater mortgages a continuing problem and said the FDIC is “actively looking” at ways to encourage principal write-downs in the deals it does to facilitate acquisitions of failed banks.

Overall, Bair was positive about housing finance. “After three long and difficult years for housing and mortgage finance, I think we’re seeing some progress in stabilizing our housing markets,” she said.

Source: Reuters News, Karey Wutkowski (03/04/2010)


One Response

  1. I have been saying all along that the only solution to solve the housing problem is to take the current tax property appraisers value of each home and compare it to the amount owed, than reduce the loan amount to that value and enter to an JV agreement with the home owner, that upon sale of the property the proceeds will be distributed as follows: 100% of the proceeds will be paid to the lender until the amount exceeding the original mortgage. If the house is sold in the future for a greater amount of the original mortgage, the homeowner can keep the amount exceeding that loan amount. Example: Original Loan Amount $1,000,000 Current tax value $600,000, Write down loan amount to $600,000.
    If home is sold for $700,000 all the proceeds will go to the lender and nothing to the home owner ( just like a short sale, the only difference is that the current owner stays in his home). The home owner will get a satisfaction of mortgage and no 1099! If the home is sold at anytime in the future for any amount exceeding $1,000,000 the lender will receive the original loan amount of $1,000,000 and the home owner will receive the balance exceeding the $1,000,000! In this case the home owner will feel good about making his payments, because he will be paying on an appreciating asset and not on an underwater asset!
    He can sell his house at any time easy without going to a short sale process plus it will not affect his credit rating.
    In the current environment it is proven that even people with good credit are more likely to walk away from their home, if the mortgage is under water. If the loan write downs are done consumer confidence will rise and more disposable income will be available to get the economy going. This is a win-win situation for everybody including the lenders and our government. Taking in consideration that the banks have already sold the mortgages and or written down the loan amount and received our tax payer’s bailout money, they should bail out the consumer and write down these loans to get the balance back into our system. When the LTV ratio (Loan-to value) is reestablished in this country and only then can our economy by rising again and jobs created.
    The American dream of owning a home has become a nightmare of owning a home. We need to get that confidence back to the American people. American’s biggest savings and retirement security was their home equity, but with today’s value being down 50%, there is no more savings or equity. So until the banks write down these loans for all homeowner in the US, this country with a GDP resulting of 75% coming from consumer spending, the Country will have problems for years to come.
    I hope my input will push this issue further and I’m debating on starting a forum or blog on my website to have congress and the Obama administration move on this in the very near future. Any comments are welcome.
    Tarek Kirschen

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