Did you hear the good news? Robogate is over. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac gave real estate agents the green light last week to go ahead and resume selling foreclosed homes after declaring a brief time-out to investigate some, um, irregularities on the documentation front.
And so, casually, perhaps wistfully, we bid adieu to the colorful robosigners and the stern-faced, central-casting-crusty retired robojudges in their rocket dockets whose shenanigans have apparently ceased, at least to the satisfaction of Mae and Mac. Nothing unseemly afoot here. Kindly move along.
Maybe I missed the memo, but what happened? When this latest kerfuffle in our ongoing national foreclosure crisis blew up in September, it sent shockwaves through the housing market. The TV news was filled with outraged foreclosure victims, buyers and evictees alike, all newly lawyered-up, screaming foul. The nation's largest mortgage lenders placed a moratorium on the sale of foreclosed properties. Title insurance companies got nervous at the prospect of ending up with the hot potato.
But now, just as suddenly as the crisis surfaced, poof -- it's over. Apparently by mutual consent.
It's full steam ahead with foreclosures. Head 'em up, move 'em out. The major banks have lifted their moratoriums. The major title companies have decided not to demand written indemnification agreements from mortgage lenders reselling foreclosed homes. As for angry homeowners? Dude, that's SO last September.
Oh sure, there's that 50-state foreclosure task force headed by Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller. The very fact that they're working "to start the dialogue on these issues" with the big banks, in Miller's words, is a bit of a spoiler alert, don't you think?
I want this foreclosure mess behind us as much as the next homeowner, but not at the expense of truth, justice and the letter of the law.
If we allow all parties to simply return to robobusiness as usual, to simply toss their PR great coat over this mess and declare it resolved, we will have been more than duped.
We will have been robo-doped.
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