Foreclosure is one of homeowners' greatest nightmares. The idea of losing a hard-won property asset is bad enough, but losing a home and a household can be an especially traumatic experience. Losing a business can be just as harmful to a business or family.
The recession that began a decade ago changed the face of how money is loaned for residential and commercial property purchases, with new laws and organizations designed to make foreclosures less likely. Many of those services included Ohio, a state where foreclosure and bankruptcy rates are among the highest in the country.
Ohio is among 19 states and the District of Columbia that received aid from an agency funded by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, which contributed $2 billion of nearly $10 billion destined as mortgage relief for those in danger of foreclosure. But the agency held up a lot of the funds with unnecessary waste.
A government report last year condemned the agency for seven years of a culture of waste and profligate rules regarding expenses and fees that lost or misappropriated millions in funds that could have been used to prevent foreclosure. Charges included gift cards as rewards for financial specialists, as well as party supplies for agency offices.
Legal representation may be advisable for a person, family or business owner who is at risk at foreclosure or other forms of property loss. Creditors are limited to methods for demanding payment, and foreclosure may be off the table for people affected by scams and other illegal activity.
Source: Forbes, "Millions For Homeowners Facing Foreclosure Squandered By State Agencies," Diana Hembree, Sep. 30, 2017