On August 31, 2010 President Barack Obama announced the end of combat operations in Iraq, keeping his promise to end the Iraq War responsibly.
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- 1T Day #OWS
- 99 percent
- Bank of America
- Big banks
- Chicken Man
- Chief Financial Officer Tim Sloan
- City Hall
- City Officials
- Cruz family
- Edward Meagher
- Fannie Mae
- Home Defenders League
- Housing Bust
- Housing Crisis
- Occupy Atlanta
- Occupy Minnesota
- Occupy Our Homes
- Occupy San Gabriel
- Occupy Wall Street
- People's Party
- Political corruption
- President Barack Obama
- President Obama
- Purple Heart
- Sherrif's Office
- Socialist Worker's Party
- US Bank
- Vietnam Veteran
- Wells Fargo
- Wells Fargo Foreclosures
- access to jobs
- battering rams
- bolt cutters
- business news
- city council
- city ordinance
- educational benefits
- federal court
- foster care
- job training
- loan modification
- medical issues
- mistaken foreclosures
- property deed
- rental company
- transition issues
Selling a home can be a difficult, stressful process, even now after the nation's largest banks have paid billions to settle claims of robosigning, and foreclosing on homes without properly vetting the paperwork.
Now imagine going through the process, receiving multiple offers...the hard part is over, right?
Not for Lily Diaz, a California woman who after receiving two offers on her house, discovered that Wells Fargo had actually foreclosed on the home months earlier.
Diaz said she was shocked because she has the paperwork that shows she completed a loan modification with Wells Fargo in January.
She said she made every monthly payment on time since it was approved.
“Wells Fargo apparently didn’t let title know the modification was accepted and they let the foreclosure proceedings continue,” said Duarte. “Wells Fargo knows they made the mistake. They don’t know how to fix it.”
As it stands now, the home can’t be sold.
Wells Fargo contacted Diaz to resolve the problem, but in the meantime, Diaz lost two offers on her home.
Despite efforts by federal regulators, it doesn't seem that the problem of mistaken foreclosures has been resolved, as unfortunately, cases such as Lily Diaz' are still not rare.
Tocco Collins knew there were problems with the Atlanta home she rented for herself and her children, but the company that she paid her rent to, the Real Estate Connection, promised that they would take care of everything.
The single mother of 12 said she waited seven months, but nothing was repaired. Collins said shortly thereafter, disaster struck.
"My biggest nightmare came of August 2011 when my light box caught on fire. Georgia Power disconnected my service because it was too dangerous," Collins said.
Collins and her family have been using a generator for the last 10 months. She said she stopped paying rent when her supposed landlord refused to make repairs. They took Collins to court in an attempt to get her evicted and that is when she said she discovered the shocking truth.
"No one could provide the deed to the house. The people renting me the house don't own it," Collins said.
Now the "fake" landlords have disappeared, Collins has no place to live and she said the state is trying to take her children.
Occupy Atlanta is now working with the family, and the group hopes that with the public's help, they can purchase a home for them. Volunteer plumbers, electricians, and carpenters will do renovations. Occupy Atlanta already has a good deal of experience working within their community, and helping families in need. I'll keep you posted on any updates.
Edward Meagher joined the United States Air Force in 1966. He volunteered to go to Vietnam and spent well over 2.5 years overseas.
Today, Edward has the privilege of working with veterans coming home from Iraq and Afghanistan:
President Obama's message has been very clear. You stood up for us; we will stand tall for you. He's ended the war with honor, and he's brought them home, and he's doing the same thing in Afghanistan. He understands at a real gut level what these folks have been through.
President Obama has taken a wide view of taking care of veterans who have come back from their service. He's really addressing all their issues: the medical issues, the transition issues, educational benefits, jobs. They have to have access to jobs. They have to have job training. He's put real programs in place -- programs that work.
One year after the Madrid anti-capitalism riots of June 15, 28, and 29th, 2011...
The series of protests demands a radical change in Spanish politics, as protesters do not consider themselves to be represented by any traditional party nor favored by the measures approved by politicians.
Even though protesters form a heterogeneous and ambiguous group, they share a strong rejection of unemployment, welfare cuts, Spanish politicians, the current two-party system in Spain between the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party and the People's Party, as well as the current political system, capitalism, banks and bankers, political corruption and firmly support what they call basic rights: home, work, culture, health and education.
According to statistics published by RTVE, the Spanish public broadcasting company, between 6.5 and 8 million Spaniards have participated in these protests.
A Phoenix, Arizona woman is taking on two mortgage giants, Bank of America and Fannie Mae, and the case is making its way through federal court. Lilly Washington is representing herself, and seeking ownership of her home and compensation for belongings that were thrown out when her home was wrongfully foreclosed.
Washington was in the middle of a loan modification with Bank of America when her son who is in the military was wounded and sent to a hospital in Germany. She informed the bank that she needed to go be with her son, and BoA assured her in a letter that they were aware of her trip and: "will await your return so that we can finish the loan modification process." She thought everything would be fine until her return.
But just days after leaving, the bank foreclosed, and Fannie Mae took ownership of her home:
"Everything was empty. Everything. Upstairs, downstairs everything was empty," says Lilly Washington.
Washington was stunned when she returned home and found a "for sale" sign in her yard. She managed to get back into the home and immediately started making calls.
"I said 'where did you put my stuff from the house. Which storage.' They said, 'we don't put in storage, it is at the city dump.'"
Washington had just returned from visiting her wounded son in Germany. She was gone for a month and half. Her son's Purple Heart was thrown away too.
"I said, my gosh how can you take that. He is fighting for this country. And you steal from his home, everything," says Washington.
Washington's church helped her refurnish the home as she wasn't able to recover any of her belongings, and she has been fighting for two years now to regain ownership.
Update after the jump...
Sheriff's deputies tried twice this week to evict Occupy Minnesota supporters from a foreclosed home they were defending.
On Wednesday, aggressive efforts of Occupy Minnesota foiled a 4:00 PM sheriff's raid on the foreclosed home of the Cruz family. The deputies retreated.
On Friday they returned again at 4:00 AM, armed with battering rams, jack hammers and massive bolt cutters. There were about a dozen occupy volunteers sleeping at the house. All but two were ordered outside - the two couldn't find their shoes. The five people secured to the building were forcibly removed and arrested, currently held until Tuesday morning.
Again the sheriff's crew was driven back by the occupy volunteers who came up the alley and entered the back of the house. The deputies retreated with their prisoners leaving the home in shambles.
A rally in front of City hall at noon on May 25, featured the broken door and speeches by supporters including three members of the Minneapolis City Council. The door was then delivered to Sheriff Stanek's Office in City Hall. The sheriff declined to meet with the demonstrators. The broken door was left at the front door of his office. A major source of frustration was that the bank was working with the Cruz family to clear up the situation and renew the mortgage. The sheriff's actions cut across this progress and was seen as unnecessary and punitive by those close to the situation.
A disabled woman whose home is in foreclosure was arrested Thursday night after attempting to deliver a payment at the home of a Wells Fargo executive while about 100 protesters supported her on the residential street. Ana Casas, who says she is close to eviction after the bank rejected a loan modification on her South Gate home, defied a city ordinance by going up to the front door and demanding to see Wells Fargo Chief Financial Officer Tim Sloan.
Police also allowed Ana Casas Wilson, who suffers from cerebral palsy and uses a motorized wheel chair, to wait 15 minutes at Sloan’s door with a mortgage payment on her foreclosed home. Casas Wilson, who has lived on the property for 27 years, said Wells Fargo has been unwilling to negotiate a loan modification although she is once again able to make payments after falling behind during a hospital stay.
About a dozen San Marino officers were joined at the scene by a handful of Pasadena police, while dozens of officers from Pasadena, South Pasadena, San Gabriel and Alhambra — many in crowd-control gear — waited on surrounding blocks.
Just before 8 p.m., about 90 minutes into the demonstration, police formed a line around the home, declared the assembly illegal and ordered the group to move 75 feet up the street.
Casas Wilson refused to go and was taken to San Marino police headquarters with the assistance of San Marino Fire Department paramedics.
“I’m doing this because people need to see what the banks are doing. It’s awful. It has to stop,” Casas Wilson told the Pasadena Sun. “When I was down and out in the hospital they took my house.”
In the video above from SGV News, the newscaster asks Ms. Wilson if she had anything she wanted to say to Wells Fargo, and she replied "They're going to burn in hell."
Not a good PR day for the bank.
OccupyOurHomes is working with a Minneapolis family in an effort to try to save their home from foreclosure by USBank:
John Vinje and Lucinda Adams-Vinje bought their home in 2008 for 148,000. Their payment was roughly $1,300 per month on a 30 yr fixed term. It was the 1st home that either of them had ever purchased. John had been an Air Force pilot during the Vietnam war before working for many years as a security officer. Lucinda had a well established 10 year career as a TSA agent at the Minneapolis airport. Lucinda chose the home because she had grown up in the South Metro area and her work is nearby. She also happens to love the house. John says "I'm not sure why, she just loves it."
If they do nothing they will lose their home in April of 2012. This Air Force veteran and his wife have worked their entire adult life and now stand to lose the only home that either has ever owned.
What US Bank doesn't realize is that John and his wife are fighters. They, along with a growing number of Minnesota homeowners, have taken a pledge to stand with their community and fight for their home.
John had this to add: "Their refusal to work with us is an outrage. Do you know how much the C.E.O. of US Bank made last year? 18 million dollars! And yet they want my house that's only worth $80,000. Well you know what? I'm not gonna let them have it!"
If you would like to help this family save their home from foreclosure, there are a couple of things you can do:
Call U.S. Bank Sr. Vice President Tom Joyce TODAY: 612-303-3167. Tell U.S. Bank to postpone John Vinje's sheriff's sale and come to the table with a reasonable modification offer that will allow he and his family can stay in their home.
Sign this petition from Change.org.
Tragic: Andrew Wordes, 53, of Roswell, Georgia wanted to raise chickens on his property more than anything, however city ordinances prohibited livestock in his area, and officials refused to grant a permit for him to do so. Many citations and code violations later, Wordes -- who became known locally as the "Chicken Man" -- was sent to jail over the chickens and fell behind on his mortgage and soon faced eviction. Friends and neighbors say that the the ongoing legal troubles "took a toll on Wordes".
On Monday, Wordes called a reporter with the local news and asked him to come to the house. When Mike Petchenik, the reporter, pulled up in the WSBTV truck, he saw Fulton County Marshalls trying to speak to Wordes through the front door. They were trying to evict him from the home.
Wordes denied them entry to his home and refused to come out.
In a two hour stand-off, Wordes spoke to Petchenik on the phone, and told him to get the Marshals off his property. His last words to Petchenik were: "I appreciate everything, brother. I appreciate everything you've done. I can't tell you what's going to happen, it ain't pretty, though."
Antonio Johnson, one of the Marshals on the scene said: “Once he advised us to leave his property, we retreated. And that’s when the explosion happened.”
The explosion shook both the house and the neighborhood and the remains of a charred body were found, which has now been confirmed to be that of Wordes.