March 6, 2012
Wonder how Americans can afford to buy millions of iGadgets, a second LCD TV for the shoe closet, and eat at restaurants more than almost any time in the past despite sliding personal income? Simple – increasingly fewer pay the biggest staple bill in a US household: their mortgage. The following story of Keith And Janet Ritter, who have lived in their Fort Washington, MD $1.29MM, 4,900 square foot McMansion for 5 years (which they purchase with no money down) without ever making a single mortgage payment, and who are not even close to being evicted, may explain much about the way US society currently operates, and why other perfectly responsible and hard-working taxpayers (who do have to pay for their mortgage) continue to fund tens of billions in Fannie and Freddie losses who are first on the hook to absorb the implicit losses by allowing families such as the Ritters to live in perpetuity without paying, and the banks to keep said mortgage on the books at par without any impairments.
The Washington Post has more on this absolute horror story of a case study of just how busted the USSA has become:
The eviction from their million-dollar home could come at any moment. Keith and Janet Ritter have been bracing for it — and battling against it — almost from the moment they moved into the five-bedroom, 4,900-square-foot manse along the Potomac River in Fort Washington.
In five years, they have never made a mortgage payment, a fact that amazes even the most seasoned veterans of the foreclosure crisis.
The Ritters have kept the sheriff at bay by repeatedly filing for bankruptcy and by exploiting changes in Maryland’s laws designed to help delinquent homeowners avoid foreclosure.
Those efforts to protect homeowners have transformed Maryland’s foreclosure process from one of the country’s shortest to one of the longest. It now takes on average 634 days to complete a foreclosure in Maryland, compared with 132 days in Virginia.
And that, ladies and gents, is why this country is fucked.
Meet the Ritters:
“Keith and Janet Ritter inside their home in Fort Washington, Md. In five years, they have never made a mortgage payment, a fact that amazes even the most seasoned veterans of the foreclosure crisis.”
“Janet Ritter in the dining area of their Fort Washington home. The
Ritters make no apology for using every tactic available to them to stay
in their house, including challenging the foreclosure sale in court and
“Keith Ritter has a business, Beat It Movers, that involves eviction services, property preservation and cleaning of foreclosed homes. Here, he checks out some ceiling damage in one such home in Fort Washington. Ritter gets the irony of working for some of the same banks that have foreclosed on him. But he has to make money somehow. “All I know is real estate,” he said.”
Casa de Ritter:
“The Ritter’s Fort Washington home. They have kept their home for so long by repeatedly filing for bankruptcy and by exploiting changes in Maryland’s laws designed to help delinquent homeowners avoid foreclosure.”
“Interior of Keith and Janet Ritter’s Fort Washington home. Efforts to protect homeowners have transformed Maryland’s foreclosure process from one of the country’s shortest to one of the longest. It now takes on average 634 days to complete a foreclosure in Maryland, compared with 132 days in Virginia”
And when all else fails, beg god for debt forgiveness: “Bible verses are marked that pertain to debt and forgiveness on a table in the Ritters’ home in Fort Washington.”
Then again, who needs god when you have hope and change… for some.
This article was posted: Tuesday, March 6, 2012 at 4:18 am