Homeowners Used Home as ATM: Equity Loans Now Hasten Foreclosures From the Bay Area, the Central Valley of California to the Florida Coast.
How is it that some homeowners end up owing more than their home is worth? Well for the past few years starting in 2001 and ending in 2006, homes came to represent a new currency. If you had a home, you had cash. All it took was for the homeowners to get the home appraised and refinanced. The money they took out was ready to be spent on pricey, but sometimes unnecessary things such as one or two extra vehicles, toys and various other gadgets for the household. Those who had other sources of income ended up taking trips to the far corners of the earth. The surprising thing that happened is that banks and mortgage companies were ready to give credit. A home may be refinanced up to three times with no red flags being sent out. Now that credit is assessed closely, many of these people are left with no money. By then, the house values have greatly decreased. Homeowners are stuck. They can not refinance their homes because they end up owing more than the house is worth. Many homeowners just decide to walk away from the shell of the home. The equity is gone. The house only remains standing. And the wild grass continues to grow before it gets grown.
There is no doubt that rising home values from 2001 to 2006 caused many homeowners to launch themselves into this kind of exuberant lifestyles. The trips to Reno, casinos, Las Vegas and other fun destinations were numerous. All of this was being funded by money that was not truly there to be spent. With the tumbling of home values and sales, many families are waking up homeless and realize that the primary function of a house is to be a home, but not an ATM or mini-bank. From higher to lower income individuals, homeowners are being hurt. Those who got caught up in the subprime market end up suffering more. The question is what is more important: Is it the house or the expensive, unused toy? While the house is getting lost to foreclosure, the toys are being carted away into storage space, apartment or condo rentals. In the next few months, it is not unreasonable to see that the rental industry will be picking up quickly. As interest rates get adjusted more, more people will have to move out their homes. When it becomes impossible to use home equity to pay for monthly expenses, then some homeowners are really starting to see the core ideas of personal finance. The ideas of saving for hard times never come to them either.
Stars' BabyGate: Magazines Willing to Negotiate Millions for Celebrity Pregnancy and Celebrity Baby Shots
No, Marc Anthony and Jennifer Lopez did not start the baby shot race. Actually, the thirst or hunger for anything celebrity or star has always been around. The whole world took notice of Michael Jackson's babies. Before his kids, the public could not have enough of Princess Diana and Prince Charles's heirs. Famous babies always attract the curiosity of admiring fans. But it was not until Baby Shiloh was born that true baby shot gaga entered the consciousness of the American public. Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt allowed People to photograph their daughter in exchange of a sizable amount or donation to a charity of their choice. Since then, celeb baby covers have been big business. No wonder paparazzi become more determined to get the last shot. OK! Magazine enter the field on the British side. Rights are bought. And copies of magazines full with exclusive shots of these little mega-millionaires are fed to the hungry public. Only in this country can newborn arrive with a silver spoon in their mouth!
So, photos of pregnant Halle Berry will sell. So will those of Nicole Kidman. Now that Angelina Jolie is pregant again, everyone is watching to see how much their baby (ies) will fetch. How about the next offspring of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes? Suri Cruise had her own exclusives. Violet Afflect, daughter of Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck attracted so many consumers. More and more copies of OK! and People magazines arrived at the stand.
For $1.5 million, Christina Aguilera sold the rights of her baby shots to People Magazine. So far, if the price is truly $6 million for Marc Anthony and Jennifer Lopez's twins, each one will command a cool $3 million. Who is beating this easy money out there? Stars are making money left and right. How about the teenager sister of Britney Spears who is pregnant? She has been offered a cool $1 million for the rights to shoot her baby's pictures.
Sheryl Crow agreed to a photo shoot with her baby son after OK! agreed to make a donation to the World Food program. Julia Roberts showed a picture of her son during her recent appearance on the Oprah Winfrey show. Can anyone tell me how much Nicole Richie's pregnancy is going for these days? Her pregnancy has done wonders for her tarnished image.