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Phoenix Homeowners and Personal Responsibility - by Gary Kiernan

This is a subject about which I have often been tempted to put pen to paper, but have shied away from it for various reasons. However, an article in a prominent Arizona newspaper recently has forced me to re-think that decision.

Once again, we are told how a young couple, trying to get ahead in this world, were duped by some big, bad lender. Apparently, they were approached by a lender who told them that he could move them into a much bigger house and that at close of escrow they would receive $20,000 in cash. The article also stated that they signed loan docs in a parking lot and that they were not notarized at that time. The article then goes on to state that even though they could not afford the payments, the lender "promised" he would help them refinance within a couple of months to obtain a more affordable payment. Well apparently the lender subsequently went missing, and now, boo hoo, they cannot keep up the payments. Well, cry me a river!

There were so many warning signs in the above scenario; what could possibly have caused the buyers to overlook them. Oh right, that perennial standby-Greed.

I am reminded, in this case, of the many people who are duped by Nigerian internet scams who end up sending vast sums of cash to those predators. They whine how they were taken advantage of, when in many cases the scammers openly admit that they are taking money that is not theirs, and need your "help". In both instances the "victims" are overwhelmed by their own greed.

Unfortunately, it is a result of the general sense of entitlement that many people possess today. Do you really "own" a home if you are putting no money down? Do you really "own" a home if you get cash back at closing as legal as that may be and therefore have nothing invested in said home? We make it too easy for people to buy homes they cannot really afford, which makes it too easy for them to walk away when times get tough. This is one of the reasons the real estate market in Phoenix, indeed in the U.S.A., finds itself in the perilous state it is today.

Do not misunderstand me, banks are extremely willing co-conspirators in this whole scheme. Watch how they scream for federal assistance as their greed comes home to roost.

Ultimately, if a deal sound fishy, it probably is. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Exercise some restraint and take responsibility seriously.

Unfortunately, for some folks who crave the ultimate American dream of homeownership, their zeal and greed impedes their ability to exercise caution, turning the whole exercise into a nightmare.

Please act carefully and responsibly.



I am a Real Estate Broker in Arizona and have been in Real Estate for 14 years. I am also a licensed Broker in the state of California which is where I began my career. I currently practice real estate in Arizona with my wife who is a licensed sales associate also in both states. We specialize in the Greater Phoenix area concentrating on Cave Creek, Carefree, Scottsdale, Phoenix including Desert Hills, Anthem, Paradise Valley, Gilbert, Mesa and Chandler. To learn more about Gary and Shannon and Cave Creek, Arizona and the surrounding communities please visit their website at http://www.garizonaproperties.com or you may email them at skiernanc21@yahoo.com


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