Stop Paying Mortgage…Start living


The NYTimes is reporting in Owners Stop Paying Mortgages, and Stop Fretting that:

The average borrower in foreclosure has been delinquent for 438 days before actually being evicted, up from 251 days in January 2008, according to LPS Applied Analytics.

But, hey, there aren’t many of these, right?

Foreclosure procedures have been initiated against 1.7 million of the nation’s households. The pace of resolving these problem loans is slow and getting slower because of legal challenges, foreclosure moratoriums, government pressure to offer modifications and the inability of the lenders to cope with so many souring mortgages.

And what are these non-paying ‘deadbeats’ doing with this ‘saved’ money:

Foreclosure has allowed them to stabilize the family business. Go to Outback occasionally for a steak. Take their gas-guzzling airboat out for the weekend. Visit the Hard Rock Casino.

“Instead of the house dragging us down, it’s become a life raft,” said Mr. Pemberton, who stopped paying the mortgage on their house here last summer. “It’s really been a blessing.”

A growing number of the people whose homes are in foreclosure are refusing to slink away in shame. They are fashioning a sort of homemade mortgage modification, one that brings their payments all the way down to zero. They use the money they save to get back on their feet or just get by.

Casinos? No moral hazard here, right? It seems that everyone, in essence, has become their own Nero, fiddling while watching their “Rome” burn.

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