By Bob Negele
These days, it seems more people are familiar with Chapter 13 bankruptcy (reorganization), since it's often used as a way to prevent mortgage foreclosure and catch up on debts. In fact, the foreclosure crisis has heightened America's awareness of a variety of financial terms, including subprime lending, mortgage default and foreclosure rescue.
And if you feel like you can't turn on the TV or open a newspaper without hearing about the disaster that the subprime mortgage boom has become, take heart (sort of): there are still plenty of interesting foreclosure stories out there.
According to the Arizona Republic, a Scottsdale woman could be facing foreclosure in the near future. But she isn't involved in a subprime loan and her mortgage will not adjust in the coming months.
The woman, a 67-year-old who lives with her 45-year-old daughter, has reportedly been sued for foreclosure by her neighborhood's homeowners association. The reason? Evidently, she won't turn off the lights. And it's starting to irritate the neighbors.
Sources indicate that the outdoor security light this woman has positioned in her yard is preventing neighbors from sleeping, since it pours into their bedroom window. And, apparently, the homeowners association sided with the complainers and asked the woman to pull the plug.
When she failed to comply, the association levied fines that have added up to a reported $30,000. Because she refused to pay her fines, sources report, the homeowners association has sued the woman for foreclosure.
Now, according to the Republic, the woman is facing more than $80,000 - fees from the homeowners association plus legal fees - in addition to the threat of foreclosure. Not exactly the typical foreclosure tale these days.
And here's another unusual take on the foreclosure crisis: an ABC News affiliate reports that recent house fires in Michigan and Colorado are raising suspicion among insurers. Apparently, the houses that burned were days away from being foreclosed upon and the fires acted as red flags.
An alleged criminal investigation into one of the homeowners suggests that insurance companies are becoming suspicious of fires on properties with foreclosure in their futures.
It seems some homeowners desperate to save their finances and reluctant to lose their homes to foreclosure have opted to commit arson rather than face a downward financial spiral.
While anyone who has struggled to make monthly mortgage payments (and electricity payments, and gas payments, and insurance payments, and credit card payments...) can likely relate to the desire to "make it all go away," most people realize that committing a serious crime is not the answer to financial difficulties.
Sometimes, saving your home and finances is as easy as filing Chapter 13 bankruptcy, which allows you to reorganize your secured debts and pay them off over a period of three to five years.
If you're looking for a way to save your finances and/or your home, you should consider getting in touch with a bankruptcy lawyer to discuss your possible bankruptcy options.