A Very Disturbing Set of Foreclosure Auction Numbers
There are many, many very good foreclosure defense attorneys across the state and frankly there is a very high concentration of very good foreclosure defense attorneys here in the Tampa Bay area in particular. All the judges know it, all the foreclosure plaintiff’s know it….some of the best foreclosure defense attorneys in the state have their offices here in the Tampa Bay area. We all recognize that attorneys like Mark Stopa have helped to develop very real defenses, and have spent extraordinary amounts of time educating judges about these defenses.
One of my biggest frustrations is the vast numbers of consumers who do not defend their foreclosure cases, there are just far too many consumers out there that do not reach out to any attorney at all. Far too many consumers that work directly with the banks…and in the course of doing so, get into deals that are not in their best interest.
Worse than that however are consumers who wind up in the hands of foreclosure pretender defender attorneys who charge ongoing monthly fees, but who do little or no work for those fees and then abandon the client when the trial or resolution comes near without fully examining to make sure that the plaintiff has a strong case. In 2015 at Weidner Law, we’re going to be reaching out more than ever to consumers to make sure they get access to quality and affordable legal services to make sure their interests are protected….I dream of the day when every foreclosure case is properly defended.
One of the ways that we’re going to start accomplishing this goal is to start offering free foreclosure defense to some clients. And we will continue to work with all clients to make sure we provide reasonable attorney’s fee charges across the board.
Now with all that being said, let’s examine what’s happened in 2014 with foreclosures. I’m going to start first with Pinellas County and provide some raw numbers
A total of 5767 Foreclosure Auctions held between January 1, 2014 and December 31, 2014.
Here’s the most disturbing number of all:
Of the 5767 auctions held in 2014, 4600 of those homes went back to the Plaintiff
The reason this number is so important, and so disturbing is it reveals that the end product of the vast majority of foreclosures is not a home that makes its way into the private market, with the private market determining what the true value of that home is.
No, the disturbing reality of foreclosure auctions across this state is that those auctions are manipulated and improperly controlled by the plaintiffs who are conspiring together to engage in systemic bid-rigging.
In doing so they are provoking a whole range of improper consequences, and they are artificially controlling and manipulating the market. There are clearly a whole broad range of reasons for this behavior, and chief among that conduct are the incentives from these plaintiffs to collect the insurance money, guarantees and other payoffs that operate behind the scenes.
There are several other very important pieces of information to take from these data sets, especially when you see what is happening up at the top of the market. The auction results show that there is very robust bid activity that occurs for homes well above six figures. Specifically, there are 1400 auctions which feature third party bidders willing to pay more than $100,000 for these properties…..but in the vast majority of those cases, those bids are beaten out by plaintiffs.
The unusual bidding activity doesn’t stop there. There remains significant bid activity that exceeds the quarter of a million dollar range and even bids that exceed into the million dollar range.
Some more numbers:
$90,106,678.88 in Money Changing Hands
$1,431,457.48 in Clerk Fees
$2,969,453.20 in Documentary Stamps
There is so much more going on behind the scenes here, things that sophisticated need to carefully consider, but the bottom line is this….
There are very few people within the judicial system or those who are dealing with foreclosures that understand the real dynamics and consequences of a foreclosure system that results in banks beating out the private market to retake possession of these homes…