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My Day At A Foreclosure Call-In Center

Ed McMahon
AP
Ed McMahon

I'm spending the day in Reston, VA at one of the big offices of Fannie Mae. Employees here are volunteering at a call center for a foreclosure phone-a-thon being run out of Cincinnati, OH.

Apparently the community groups running this effort to save local borrowers didn't have the bodies to handle the call volume, so Fannie volunteered to help.

I know I've been reporting this forever but in eavesdropping just in the room, I'm once again amazed at what's going on out there in loan land.

One guy who called in is in trouble on five mortgages. Yes he's one of those speculative investors we're always bashing, but that's still a lot. Some callers don't seem to understand the questions from the Fannie counselors, like, "Do you have a second lien on the property?" or "Who is your lender?"

I know everyone is gasping today over news that Ed McMahon is over a half a million dollars behind on his mortgage, but he's really not all that different from these callers, give or take a few million dollars in income. Ed needed to sell his home in order to pay off his loan, but nobody's buying. Same story everywhere.

What's really amazing is that despite all these unprecedented efforts to help, the foreclosures mount.

Stay tuned in tomorrow. The Mortgage Bankers Association releases its big quarterly delinquency report. It likely won't be good.