Make us your home page

One journey through the mortgage maze





One homeowner's journey through the securitized mortgage maze

One journey through the mortgage maze

April Charney, an attorney with Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, and other lawyers are fighting home fore­closures on the grounds that it can be impossible to tell who has the right to foreclose and collect the debt on loans that have been sold, bundled into securities and sold to investors. Many loans have changed hands so often that struggling homeowners like Ed Taylor, a retired Hillsborough County insurance adjuster, are unable to find anyone to deal with as they try to renegotiate their mortgages. But the confusion also means that Taylor and others are able to stay in their homes for months or even years without making a payment. Susan Taylor Martin, Times Senior Correspondent

Oct. 4, 2005: Taylor gets a $116,000 loan from Argent Mortgage, a subprime lender based in California.

2005 or 2006: Taylor's loan is bundled with hundreds of other subprime loans into an "Argent Securities Asset-Backed Pass-Through Certificate,'' which is sold to investors. Taylor continues to make his $880 monthly payments to Argent.

Aug. 31, 2007: Citigroup buys Argent and the right to collect on $45 billion in Argent home loans, including Taylor's. He starts making payments to a Citigroup subsidiary, Citi Residential Lending.

Fall 2007: When Taylor misses a payment because of a serious illness, he contacts Citi to make the first of several attempts to modify his mortgage. He says he repeatedly writes to Citi and offers to pay what he can on his loan, but never hears anything back.

April 3, 2008: Deutsche Bank, as trustee for Pass-Through Certificate Series 2006-W25, files a notice of lis pendens — the first step in foreclosure — against Taylor in Hillsborough Circuit Court. However, there is nothing in the county's official records to show that Argent or Citi Residential ever assigned Taylor's note to Deutsche Bank, which would give Deutsche the legal right to foreclose and collect the debt.

April 16, 2008: Nearly two weeks after Deutsche Bank starts foreclosing, Citi Residential assigns the mortgage and note to Deutsche. But the document filed by Citi shows Taylor's loan as part of Pass-Through Certificates, Series 2005-W5, not 2006-W25. (A letter Taylor got from Deutsche's law firm has yet a third serial number. "There are a lot of mistakes,'' a Deutsche attorney told the St. Petersburg Times.)

July 29, 2008: Deutsche Bank files a motion for final judgment of foreclosure.

February, 2009: American Home Mortgage Servicing, a Texas company, buys the rights from Citi Residential to collect payments on 185,000 loans, including Taylor's.

March 10, 2009: Deutsche Bank cancels a hearing on its motion for final judgment of foreclosure, but gives no reason. The case remains open.

Taylor has now remained in the house for almost two years without making a payment.

One journey through the mortgage maze 04/03/09 [Last modified: Saturday, April 4, 2009 10:31pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Carrollwood fitness center employs scientific protocol to help clients


    In 2005, Al Roach and Virginia Phillips, husband and wife, opened 20 Minutes to Fitness in Lakewood Ranch, and last month they opened the doors to their new location in Carrollwood.

    Preston Fisher, a personal fitness coach at 20 Minutes To Fitness, stands with an iPad while general manager/owner Angela Begin conducts an equipment demonstration. The iPad is used to track each client's information and progress. I also included one shot of just the equipment. The center recently opened in Carrollwood. Photo by Danielle Hauser.
  2. Olive Tree branches out to Wesley Chapel


    WESLEY CHAPEL — When it came time to open a second location of The Olive Tree, owners John and Donna Woelfel, decided that Wesley Chapel was the perfect place.

    The Olive Tree expands its offerings of "ultra premium?€ extra virgin olive oils (EVOO) to a second location in Wesley Chapel. Photo by Danielle Hauser.
  3. Massachusetts firm buys Tampa's Element apartment tower

    Real Estate

    TAMPA — Downtown Tampa's Element apartment tower sold this week to a Massachusetts-based real estate investment company that plans to upgrade the skyscraper's amenities and operate it long-term as a rental community.

    The Element apartment high-rise at 808 N Franklin St. in downtown Tampa has been sold to a Northland Investment Corp., a Massachusetts-based real estate investment company. JIM DAMASKE  |  Times
  4. New York town approves Legoland proposal


    GOSHEN, N.Y. — New York is one step closer to a Lego dreamland. Goshen, a small town about fifty miles northwest of the Big Apple, has approved the site plan for a $500 million Legoland amusement park.

    A small New York town, Goshen approved the site plan for a $500 million Legoland amusement park. Legoland Florida is in Winter Haven. [Times file  photo]
  5. Jordan Park to get $20 million makeover and new senior housing

    Real Estate


    Times Staff Writer

    ST. PETERSBURG —The St. Petersburg Housing Authority, which bought back the troubled Jordan Park public housing complex this year, plans to spend about $20 million to improve the 237-unit property and construct a new three-story building for …

    Jordan Park, the historic public housing complex, is back in the hands of the St. Petersburg Housing Authority. The agency is working to improve the 237-unit complex. But the latest plan to build a new three-story building for seniors will mean 31 families have to find new homes. [LARA CERRI   |   Tampa Bay Times]