THE SMART BANK

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There are many suggestions being made as to how best to deal with homeowners in trouble with their mortgage payment. Some are constructive and worth pushing for. Others are not.

One of these is the proposal to allow a bankruptcy judge to force a bank to reduce the Pincipal amount of the mortgage. This is called a “cram down”.

Rather than giving this power of “Cram Down” to bankrupcy courts” (most “distressed” homeowners do not, and will not want to go the bankrupcy path), I’d rather see the Real Estate and Media industries praising and fighting for the Wells Fargo strategy for dealing with their Wachovia inheritance.

They are actively using Principal Reduction “Cram Down” along with Loan Modification strategies, usually  together, to provide long term solutions to many of their defaulting loans.

With a long history of prudent and pragmatic lending policies Wells Fargo are an excellent example of what the banks could and should be doing to make it possible for responsible homeowners to stay in their homes. By lowering the loan amount and interest rate they minimize the larger loss which they would take in a foreclosure or short sale.

 the short sighted strategies being used by the majority of other banks with similar problems are best described as  re-arranging the deckchairs on the Titanic.

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