Editor’s note: The following is a reader comment on the Sept. 24 Inman News column, "Federal plan ‘a disaster in the making.’ "

"Why aren’t we just using the legislation that was previously passed? The Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HR 3221) would allow banks to "dump" their bad mortgages by accepting short payoffs from FHA refinances. All that is missing from that legislation is giving a carrot to the mortgage holders of increased tax breaks for accepting less than 100 cents on the dollar as full satisfaction of the loans, and their ability to participate in the payment of the homeowner upon sale of the house of all or part of the ‘profits.’

"This seems to me to be the most reasonable path to follow (and it should include primary residences as well as investment properties, except that the payback of profits on investment properties should be higher). This gets rid of toxic loans from the system, replacing them with realistic loans. It keeps the foreclosure rate down, without giving a full bailout to anyone. Yes, it will cost taxpayers, since there would be less tax revenues paid for a few years by banks and lenders (but, then again, how much do they pay in taxes anyway?)"
Peter J. Pike


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