You've heard about the Stimulus plan, and the Housing rescue plan, and the TARP bank bailouts. But you still have questions, right?
Ask us your questions here, and Ali will answer some tonight on AC360° at 10PM ET.
Filed under: Ali Velshi • Economy
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Hi, I am a real estate appraiser in California who went back to school a little over a year ago in order to change careers, as business was scarce and miserable. There was too much pressure to hit a pre-determined, inflated value (which is illegal and was refused) by unscrupulous, predatory lenders. These lenders should be the target of people's wrath, not the often naive or unsophisticated borrowers. But guess what-these borrowers lost their homes already!! They went under in the first wave-now they've lost their equity and have ruined credit, and nothing to show for all of their hard work and pursuit of the American dream. People complain that the bailout will help irresponsible people who lived beyond their means-not so, I believe, as they have already lost their homes. Now you're just dealing with the average over extender, or Joe the plumber who lost a job, not the class jumper, if you will.
My question is, can you please focus on who will actually be getting a loan modification-and explain, how were they able to hang on to their home for this long? This should provide a more accurate depiction of the type of family who will benefit.
From what I learned is that you have to pay back you stimulus check if you get one. Is there a way to return the check ? I like my income tax returns and helps with the beginning of the year.
Thanks for opportunity to express myself on these topics
I would feel more comfortable with the mortgage relief plan if it dealt only with primary mortages as defined in the tax code. No secondary mortgages. No more than one primary mortage per taxpaying household.
Carl Scott makes an interesting point, and even with a reduction in interest and mortgage amount, the bank STILL makes a substantial profit over the life of the loan and would also benefit from the appreciation of the property. Why not try something like that ??!!
With bailout money going to the auto industry, why not have them convert some of their excess manufacturing capacity to the production of wind turbines? The government could then give tax incentives to utility companies to purchase and install these turbines to generate electricity. These factory assets could also be converted to the production of other "green" energy sources such as solar. The benefit to all concerned should be rather obvious.
Can you explain to me why the govenment is so quick to get the banks, lenders and "The Big 3" and any other big corporate entity BILLIONS (the ones that caused this mess) of dollars with virtually no strings but when it comes to home owners they seem to take their sweet time and Obama's so called "Plan" seems to pick and choose who it helps. I wonder if any of the polititcains on Capital Hill have any of their homesssss up for auction or in foreclosure. Oh ya that's right, Senator McCain can't even remember how many homes he has. Most of these polititcians are pathetic. The put on a good dog and pony show but that's it.
I am not behind on my mortgage, but since I bought my house only two (2) years ago, I am upside down on it(I bought at full appraised price). So can I quit paying my mortgage, go into foreclosure, and then get in line for the free government welfare with the people who have over-extended themselves by lying(overstating income), and/or who purposely signed a mortgage that they knew they could not afford when the interest rate adjusted? That would be great. I can have my mortgage adjusted for the new appraisal amount and save about $16,000 and get one heck of a good A.P.R.
Of course I will not. I guess some Americans will have to actually PAY and GIVE UP some things to get us back on track.
Sorry if I am not crying crocodile tears for people's ignorance.
My husband and I disagree with those who have voiced anger over President Obama's housing plan. We do not view this as a bailout to people who were taken in by shady lending practices, who are underwater with their mortgages, who have lost their jobs due to no fault of their own, or the smaller percentage who lived beyond their means. We view this as an investment in our future. We would gladly pay the taxes in order to save tens of thousands of dollars of our home's value and our subsequent equity.
As for those who disagree without position? It is almost tantamount to the following: We did not vote for President Bush. It was his administration (as well as the Republican majority in Congress for most of the years Bush was in office), who were largely responsible for this mess we are now in, and the rampant and needless spending that have almost doubled the US Gross Debt, which is now approximately $10 trillion. Why should we, or our children, foot the bill for their mistakes that forced our country to live beyond its means? Why not let those who voted for President Bush (et al) pay off the bulk of this debt...it was their error in judgment.
Sirs, I like many other Americans got cought up in the mortgage crisis we are presently in. But, there is a difference in my situation. In 2007 I was confronted by my doctor that I had a fatal disease and with the proper care I could live a somewhat "normal life". This disease has left me disabled and not able to work anymore. With the first round of bills, blood work only it was $8.000 and other bils followed, the medicines came to at the time $ 6.000 a month.
I immediately put my home on the market and after a year trying to sell it there where no offers. I contacted Wells Fargo who holds the mortgage on my property and they told me they would not even speak to me unless I was 30 days behind. At this point I was current in all my bills. I had no choice but to go late on my mortgage and listen to Wells fargo and went late.
They told me after the 30 days that I must do a short sale on my home. I put the hoome on the morket with a realestate company that specialises in short sales. Immediatly I had 3 cash offers. I accepred the offers and was told to move out. So I did. In the mean time, Wells fargo who also holds a small second mortgage on my home was ready to close. Wells Fargo Who hold the "1st" on the house never gave the go ahead to short sale the property. Here we are a year later next month and Wells Fargo sits and plays games with me and all the professionals involved to help me. But the outcome is the same. No Sale. AND they are ruining me every month by placing a 30 day late on my credit report. There are now 12 lates and and they have issued/filed a 2nd forclosure on the property. Have you ever heard of such a crazy thing? No one here has. This also has destroyed my credit history and my credit cards all have cancelled me because of not my reputation with them but my reputation with Wells Fargo.
Wells Fargo has made no effort to get the payments reduced and because of Wells Fargo, Squaters/Homeless people have moved in the house and trashed it and. it would take 10's of thousands to repir the property. All because of Wells Fargo. There is no way I could ever afford to get this house back and personally I just want this nightmare over! The healing process has to start somewhere and sometime. But there is no end in sight . Wells Fargo in reality and literally is "Holding me Hostage" They are walking all over us and getting away with it! Can you please help me? SIncerely, Jim Matero
Contrary to mainstream belief, I think that in some cases it makes financial sense to "walk away" from a property. For those who are extremely "upside down" in their home I think it is financially "irresponsible" to continue paying on an asset knowing that you will never break even let alone get any type of return.
Credit/FICO scores can be re-established in a few years and buying a home again will be possible in the not so distant future. Market values, on the other hand, will probably not rebound to a level they once were anytime soon.
Cutting your losses now may also create a buying opportunity for someone else.
I think the housing issue has a lot to do with people simply deciding not to pay their mortgage (in some cases rightfully so) rather than not being able to afford it.
To keep it simple, I think principal reduction is going to be the only way to keep people from "walking away" from their homes-voluntarily or involuntarily.
In regard to the housing plan:
Many people in CA do not have a conforming mortgage and are way more than 5% upside down.
How about the self employed borrower? They seem to be lost in the entire conversation. Usually it is the self employed borrower that is also the small business owner and verifying income based solely on income tax returns is nearly impossible. So is the government really going to reduce the payment and principal balance based on 31% DTI from a self employed borrower's tax returns? I highly doubt it.
For the select few who can refinance and are 80%-105% LTV will they now be required to pay mortgage insurance? If so that would offset any interest rate reduction. 6% with no MI is quite similar to 5% with MI.
Then I just read that Fannie and Freddie are increasing fees effective April 1st i.e. 1.5% delivery fee, even a fee for fico above 739, and a fee for less than 30% down payment.
I hate to sound pessimistic, but this seems to be the harsh reality.
Once again, an American broadcast has failed to respect another country and perpetuated the resounding reputation of "ignorant, self-centred Americans" abroad by failing to correctly spell the name of the capital of Canada. Last night Ottawa was spelled Ottowa as AC discussed "beaver-tail" doughnuts with a "newsman".
Where to begin? The fact that most Canadians have no idea what a "beaver-tail" doughnut is (but Americans will add this to their Canadian knowledge...up there with igloos and mounted police), the fact that more "reporting" time was dedicated to the amusing rather than to highlight the meeting between the president and the prime minister, or simply, that we (the rest of the non-American world) have come to accept the fact that Americans just don't care about how they're perceived around the world nor will they change........Once again, quite unfortunate.
Had the visit itself been focused on, Americans should (or not) be happy to know that the president is actually their best foreign representative and spoke with great knowledge of Canada and of our mutually important relationship with the US.
The main networks ought to hire Paris Hilton's PR reps or I guess we'll have to keep forgiving you for not knowing any better.
What I find so amazing, is that the large majority of credit card co.and several mortgage co's. have all out sourced all of their customer service responsibilities to India, the Philipines etc. Just try and use that 1-800 number that you see on your bill or the back of your card. You will find yourself on the phone with someone named (Billy or Cindy) who speak so fast and with an accent so thick that the large majority of the American population cannot possibly understand!!! Besides the fact, that a supervisor named (Dave or Karen) cannot ever come to the phone and your question is not on the preprinted English list in front of your operator. I wonder, would any of us have invested our money or choosen their credit if we were told "from now on all your business will be turned over to another country,who won't be able to help you. Also we are not giving this job to someone in the USA. I believe that all of these banks and other corporations that are seeking help for our government should be made to bring these jobs home!!!!! KEEP THE WORK IN THE U.S.A.
I was golfing with a friend of mine today and we both live in San Diego and we happen to be joined by a Canadian gentleman who is 61 years of age and he happen to bring up an interesting point. He had mentioned to us how he was watching an American channel that was televising The USS Abraham Lincoln and showed how much America spends per second when these warships are out at sea and how ridiculous these pricetags are to the rest of the world. The point I found most interesting is how he had said that the rest of the world should not be informed on how much our military spends on any training or war practices because as he had put it this might be the exact reason that our Country finds itself in such financial dire staits. What are your thoughts?...
Ali: Will the housing plan with the elements related to low mortgage rates help create a bubble within a bubble? Will a new mini-boom of flipping, refinancing and the like begin to materials? Is a 4% rate enough to do the trick?
I own 3 properties and filed for Chapter 7 in December, do I get to keep at least one property? I operate a small restaurant out of one of the properties and also receive rental income for one of the units. The bank does not want to work with me, will Obama's new stimulus plan help me??
I am in complete disbelief with all the negativity about this refinance proposal. I have been working on refinancing my home for over a year, watching as many of my neighbor either short sale their homes or like just a few days ago have a neighbor getting the “boot” by the police. I pay my bills, my own medical insurance and have watched as my home’s value diminish 20%. Why are others worried that they will be paying for the people that are getting something from taxpayers when $350 billion already (7.1K for each of us) has paid for banks that have ripped us off? I am just barely making it and could a break…. Why are so many worried that they will be keeping me in my home… when they have already kept the fat cats in theirs?
I want to start a business of my own this year despite all that has gone on in 2008. Can you tell me just what is in the stimulus and bail outs to help me get started as a new business owner.
I want to know what the bailout is goingto do for the small buniness people. my husband and i have a small trucking company and i don't see any one willing to bail us out. we move the products across this country everyday and we don't get any help. If we screw this up ole well but let a bank or a home owner screws up the government is standing ready to hand them the money they need, well what about the little guy, which bye the way the small guy is still the back bone of this country. I am so tired of hearing about the big guys and that we can not let them fail well what about the little guy who is trying to just stay alive..
I feel that ALL of the automakers that are having financial problems should be merged. All of the CEOs would have to report to a federal individual. All of the automakers would have to ask permission to spend money. All automakers should now sell ALL autos a cheaper price to put more money back into the economy.
When will CNN and other stations start calling President Obama, President, and/or Mr. President?
What has happen to the America spirit? Charity begins at home> We wiill all sink or swim if we don't try and work together. Our war is at home , we are fighting for future and our childrens future. We have spend trillions of dollars on the wars abroad, a loss of treasure and lives. We spent billions on foreign aid, even to some counties who do not like us. We are in a war of survival in our own country. So if those of us who have been fortunate enought to be able to have a job , pay our mortages and support our families, we should be happy to help our fellow americans. What wrong with helping out those in need regardless of how one got there. It could happen to anyone of us.
My question is to Mr. Obama. I heard you say that you will not help homeowners that got in over their head. I understand but how can you justified giving the banks and investor that made it happen money. They are sitting back with billions of dollars and you want us to understand given them more money. Why cant they invest some of their own money. We the middle class feels as thought people that are in charge has no respect for us. Just take our money and give it to them people that made this happen. That is slapping us in the face. None of the big wig are going to jail. Nothing! How are we to be happy about this! With all due respect! Then we have bills with these companies and they want us to pay them back, when they are pocketing our money! We are being robbed ov er and over again
1.Our economy is based on spending.
2. People are afraid to spend.
3. Ergo, the government steps in to do the necessary spending.
Everything else is posturing &/or greed.
Should I stop paying my mortgage now so I can get in on all this free stuff? My husband is 62, been unemployed since Sept. our retirement savings have gone down, my hours were just cut and I've picked up his medical benefits. We put a 20% down payment on our house so we aren't upside down, but we have done everything right and our future is worrisome. Yes, I'm angry and I don't want to hear about "how it will help us all".
I work 70 hours a week, contribute to charities, put my kids through college, pay my bills, help parents in their retirement years, paid off school loans for over ten years, lost almost half of my longstanding retirement plan savings, will not have social security when I retire and now I need to help pay someone else's mortgage which they got when they could not afford it, are you kidding me?
how are homeowers going to pay their bills if they lose jobs? how many of bailouts are we going to have before anyone realized that is lost unless you bring more jobs?
Ari, you look and dress like a Wall Street banker and 6 months ago you had no idea what was coming, why would I listen to your advice today?
It seems that a number of great changes are currently planned for our country and all its residents, but has anyone thought about allowing the overhaul of our system to become complete by not allowing the credit bureau to control or add to the complexity and cost of all insurance products. Let's not be slaves to the credit bureau. We need to take control of the actual cost of insurabilities without adding the problems of the credit bureau and its financial cronies (Banks & CEOs) to inflate the rates of the poor (80% of Americans) and deflate the rates to the very rich (4%). The change, If it is going to be a real change, needs to beging at the root of the problems and it also needs to be complete. Oh, the other unlucky 12% of Americans are probably the Veterans left over from all the wars and conflicts – they have less than the poor.
If trust, cooperation and competition define the marketplace: fairness and justice prevail and honest hard work yields economic rewards. Such a market has no need for Madoff/Ponize scheming. Attending only to bank bailouts breeds cynicism. Cynicism reduces all financial problems to: “Oh, I’m waiting for my bailout.” If trust, cooperation and competition are the nutrients of the economic soil, economic growth will occur from Keynesian and Supply-Side stimulus programs. However, removing the toxins of suspicion, greed and corruption is difficult if the stimulus even by appearance rewards the source of the market toxins. Real stimulus changes attitudes with an enduring impact.
Do not forget the homeowners with small businesses sliding towards foreclosure. Stimulate these homeowners to get back into the game. Give every homeowner with a $500,000 or less mortgage a 10% principal reduction and refinance at a lower interest rate. The banks get bailout cash via the homeowner, realign their loan to asset ratios with a principal reduction. Homeowners keep their homes and free up cash from monthly mortgage payments providing an opportunity for consumption. Rebuild the marketplace. “Aim above morality. Be not simply good, be good for something.” (Henry David Thoreau) Lets make sure the stimulus is good for something: a competitive marketplace facilitated by cooperation and grounded in trust.
How are that going to monitor the money being giving to the states for the roads and bridges to be repaired are going to hire new people No the same companies will be giving the contracts and might hire 1 or 2 people to said they did but will work the same people they have how and just make more profit.
And the second thing is that with all the new laws that Obama is signing how come he can not use the same black pen for each signing he has to be going thru thousands of dollars for all those pens because that are not being brought at Wal-.Mart.
And how mch money has been spend on his little trips to the states for the stimulus hype there was three and each one cause millons of dollars each trip save that money .
Better yet send it my way I was layed off a month ago,And then I can pay my house off and I will not be one of the statistics when I will not beable to make the payments anymore.
What if the federal government simply bought from the banks all of the foreclosed houses at current market value. Then, when the housing market eventually recovers, put them back on the market little by little.
A) Help stop the downward pressure on house prices by taking a large number of houses off the market.
(B) Provide the banks with badly needed liquidity.
(C) Protect the taxpayer. Each house would eventually be sold by the U.S government for a profit, leaving a net gain for taxpayers.
The new Housing Stability plan is supposed to help homeowners keep their homes. How can the plan work if lenders are not forced to cooperate with the homeowners? My mortgage is with Countrywide and I have never been late but just got a paycut last month. I called today to be proactive and preempt any defaults in my mortgage by modifying my loan.They said to call back in April when I maybe would be able to qualify for the new plans? Banks got bailed out but Americans are experiencing GRAND THEFT of their future. With no bank regulations in place, there will be no stability of any kind.
What our country needs now is prayer. No time for arguments, vicious attacks, confusion, strife, etc. It is time to pray. Prayer that includes our President, that God will guide him to do what is best for our country. "Men, ought to always pray, and not faint."
I have worked for one of the big 3 auto companies for almost 11 yrs. When I first hired in in 1998, everything was great! I worked alot of overtime, and my first profit sharing check was over $7,000 before taxes. I loved the idea that I was rewarded for my hard work and long hours away from my family....almost made it worth being away from them. As a single parent with 3 children, it was a godsend to be able to provide for my children without worrying about where the next meal was coming from. We lost everything six yrs ago in a house fire, and I'll tell you right now that some of the people I have had the pleasure of working with collected over $600 in 1 day to try and help us out. All the people in America who want to bash us auto workers should think on this. I've been laid off now since December 2008. I don't have a call back date, and don't know if I'll get to go back to work. How is a stimulus check going to help if it's not a significant amount? The town where I work will no longer exist if GM or Chrysler go under. There's a spin-off company of GM here (Delphi) and 4 different Chrysler plants! This is a LOAN, not a handout. Why are the big 3 being forced to jump through hoops when the banks were allowed to run free with our money? Why won't the banks help people out when they're told that we're laid off? Why hasn't the government said, "OK, this is how we're going to do things right now..... no more than 10%interest on anything that's on loan whether a credit card, house, or car. No matter the person's credit, you will not make slaves out of the American people so you can have your special bonuses and lavish trips. If they banks can't deal with that, let them go under". Also, abolish the ARM loans. They aren't any good for anyone.
So, I've made a search/find text attempt in the stimulus plan to better understand what the plan allows for unlawful immigrants. I'm evidently not searching the correct words. I could read the webpages of bias, but can you give me a straight analysis?
Wish I could have seen the show tonight. Looks like a lot of Americans have opinions on how to help the failing mortgage industry. I tried to watch, and although I live in the surrounding Atlanta geography, 27 miles to be exact, the only channel scrambled on my TV tonight was CNN. Would love to know what happened? Will a rebroadcast run?
The comment that Anderson made that so many others in the news media use is "that people who paid their bills will be upset that the guy next door is getting a bail out and they are not." You all state that some did it right and some did it wrong what about the 5 million people who are out of work some are both incomes in a family.
What main street is really feeling is empathy, saddness and a sense of community we are not angry at our neighbors for losing their jobs and having their entire lives turned upside down. We are blessed if it hasn't happened to us YET if it could happen to them it can happen to us. We will be happy if you keep our friends and family in their homes. We want the bailout to go to us not to the real irresponsible banks and wall street firms who robbed us caused us to lose our jobs in the first place. Dont speak for the "Main Streeters" unless you really ask what we think!
I don't get it. I'm taking care of an OIF vet, he's 100% disabled. He lives at home with us. We're almost 60 yrs. old. Where's our help?? We pay our bills therefore fall in the cracks. The piddly $800 we'll get will disappear when Schwartzenegger screws the Californians. I say let them fall to feel the pain. How are they ever gonna learn! This is a joke . They don't give a rat's a– about us!
Wish I could have seen the show tonight. Looks like a lot of Americans have opinions on how to help the failing mortgage industry. I tried to watch, and although I live in the surrounding Atlanta geograhy, 27 miles to be exact, the only channel scrambled on my TV tonight was CNN. Would love to know what happened? Will a rebroadcast run?
I appreciate that it has to meet certain criteria; but get the word out. We are upset that the rich ones get immediate help; but the working class have to wait, wait and wait like all other programs.
Let's do this one right for once and help middle America first. Don't start doubting helping now that the big boys got help. Let, we the people, be heard and be helped and helped fast not last!
What's in the bill for graduating students who worked so hard for President Obama's election?
We campaigned on Creating Community service for graduating students. President Obama wanted to use the services of graduating students. What is the next step for the Obama administration? Or have corporations monopolized the President's attention, as the war did bush's to derail our economy?
In this country, there are two poles of monopoly:
1-Republicans and the companies that support them, are always looking for a tax break or a bail out so long as it goes to the rich.
The second is unconditional support for lsreal, still under the umbrella of the christian rights and republicans.
The middle class and the poor are cought in the middle, and their needs are always put on the back burner.
Has our 44th president fallen in the republican trap and put our hopes to rest as in RIP?
I am locked in a mortgage with bank of america at 4.75 with 1.5 pts. lockin ends this monday. Should I wait for the affordabiility and stability plan and see if I can get a lower interest rate and not have to spend 14 grand to refinance. I am in this mess because of the bubble in real estate values and had to pay off an ex wife (only married 3 yrs over 200 grand). Help from hawaii.
I am hoping Countrywide will have nothing to do with the Homeowner Affordability and Stability plan a lot of us are not behind but we was not able to refinace because our home values have dropped. I heard the few loans c/w modified was worst from the start. And we want to keep are home just made a mistake by adjustable rate and bank mortgage co. not willing to make loans for refinace We did not do everything wrong so please stop saying that. I truely believe this will help the country move forward. Thank you Mr President Obama
When I was growing up, the American dream was that your children would be better off than you were. When did it become ownership of ridiculous, unaffordable homes?
I am a copy editor. Last year, I was turning down work because I was so overbooked. Thus far in 2009, I have earned $400. Why am I bailing out those that were sold an idiotic, unreachable dream of housing bling?
I played the real estate game properly. I put my 20% plus down and made iimprovements only to be caught with my house now worth 1/2 of what I bought it for in 2/11/05. My down payment has evaporated and I'll never recoupe the costs of the improvements. If our government can help the rich companies then I think they can help people like me. I've worked 40 years, paid my taxes and am raising my grandchildren and helping care for my elderly father. What's wrong with helping our own? Why not let us claim the decrease of our homes on our filing of income tax and let the greedy credit card companies with their high interest rates let the consumers claim the interest charges like was allowed years ago.
In summary, if you can help Wall Street, then help your neighbor on Main Street. I listened to my professional Realtor and the Banks and they did me in–I'm stuck and just keep waiting not knowing what to do.. We need help now with the housing crisis and property taxes. They need to lower our property taxes and modify our loans on our main residence. If people bought properties to rent or flip that's different; but for those of us who bought for our families to live comfortably as their main residence and we followed the rules; then we should go to the head of the line and have priority help!
Anderson – Why would GM eliminate Saturn? This is the only line of cars that can compete head to head with Asian built cars in the same price range. I don't understand and it warrants asking politicians, GM Execs, Unions, and big dealerships alike.
To all the people that are angry that people are getting some help, why do you assume that they don’t deserve it? Oh the people who make their payments on time are mad that their neighbors are compensated for not making them on time. Get over it!! Haven’t your home values declined as well? In the end, won’t you benefit as well? Sure you won’t get any hand outs, but you won’t have late payments on your credit report, you won’t have the anxiety of dealing with the mortage company and ultimately you will get the value back on your home. Shut up already. People have lost their jobs, people can’t refinance their mortages due to declining values. What is wrong with people? It is so sad that as americans we are so quick to bail out the banks and insurance companies to try to save our 401ks, but we have no regard for our neighbors. It could happen to anyone
I saw that the President used 7 to 8 pens to sign the stimulus plan into law.
Is that a tradition and what is the reason behind it?
We campaigned on Creating Community service for graduating students and all sorts to use the services of graduating students. What is the next step for the Obama or has corporations monopolized the money as the war did to derail our economy?
In this country, there are two poles of monopoly: Republicans and the companies who support them, always looking for a tax break or a bail out so long as it goes to the rich.
The second is Isreal, where support is unconditional, still under the umbrella of the republicans.
The middle class and the poor are cought in the middle, and their needs are always put on the back burner.
Has our 44th president falling in the republican trap and put our hopes to rest as in RIP?