Real Consequences of Mortgage Crisis

May 12, 2008 Published under Economics, United States

When returning a rental car on my last trip to LA, I noticed a car packed to the ream with bags and random stuff.  I wondered what it was.

IMG_0121  IMG_0119

It turns out it was a repossessed car.

Many relate to the sub-prime mortgage implosion as a financial disaster.  Some Wall Street traders may lose their jobs.  Some will just be re-shuffled to re-package a different set of financial instruments.

But for many others, there are very real consequences.  Many lost a home.  Many are unable to even afford a storage facility for their belongings (often having their possessions within auctioned off). 

“You tell yourself, ‘I’m only going to put my things in for a short time,’ ” Mr. Blair said. “Before you know it, you’re behind. Then you have to pay penalties and interest. You owe $400 to $500. If you lost your job, you can’t come up with that, not if you want to feed your family.”  NY Times.

And so, some resort to storing their only possessions in a car.  When a car gets repossessed, they lose their last safety cocoon, they may lose their personal property, and with it presumably a lot of memories.

Imagine coming from work to find out your car was re-possessed and you no longer have clothes or anything else.  How do you get out of that deepening hole and cycle?

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