Posted by: grantahelms | November 12, 2011

State of the Mortgage Address

My fellow Americans… famous words used many times. I’ve always been proud to be an American. However, that doesn’t mean that I like all other Americans. For 8 years I have been involved in the foreclosure business.

My job involves securing and cleaning homes when they have been foreclosed on. Normally, it’s a fairly laid back job: changing door locks, removing trash, cleaning, cutting grass, making minor repairs, etc. This week I received a new property to manage. Most of the properties that I handle are average, run of the mill single family homes. But this week as I drove down the street into a subdivision, full of 3,000+ square foot homes, I thought ” WOW!”. When I pulled in front of the house that I was looking for, I thought ” WOW!”. When I walked in the front door I thought ” WHAT?”. I could not believe my eyes. It was so bad, that I tried to REWIND and stepped back out the door. When I reopenned it, nothing had changed. Enclosed are the pictures that I took.

Then it occured to me that this house was like a lot of people: Beautiful on the outside but full of trash inside. How can anyone live like this? Or did they do it for my enjoyment? When I was growing up, people had respect for themselves, their property and for others. Makes me wonder. When did this start? During Civil Rites? During Wood Stock? During Vietnam? When? I just wanted everyone to know what I find while doing my job. I know that at this time in life people are emotional, but have a little respect for YOURSELF.



  1. I will never ceased to be amazed how little respect there is in the world. These pictures speak volumes to how little people respect themselves. That anyone could exist in such a state is beyond me. Mind you, I am not blameless, as I have a mess, or seven, which has hung around for too long.

    • Thanks Red. Don’t know if I was gripeing about the houses OR the people.

  2. I think you do. Look at your opening. Your heart revealed what your mind may not have wrapped completely around. “My fellow Americans” means you are looking at the humanity in your subject. I saw it, even if you doubted it.

    Happy Sunday & see you soon,

    • Thanks Red. Anyone that reads this may think that it’s what I deserve. I mean come on, I PUT PEOPLE OUT OF THEIR HOUSES. But you know me personally. You know that I don’t necessarily enjoy my job. But I don’t put people out, the banks do. I just get paid to clean up what’s left. And I try to treat peoples property with respect. I’m sure that some who do this are only in it for the money. However, I have paid my help an extra 12 hours before to help an elderly gentleman pack his personal belongings and move them to storage. To me, this is genuine not just a job.

  3. I used to have rental property. I’m not surprise at all by this. It is not uncommon when people lose any sense of ownership for them to leave behind a mess that they wouldn’t “live” with.

    What really surprises me is that you are unaccustomed to finding property in this condition. People that lose their homes, I’m sure have been living in a downward spiral for an extended period of time. Those that do not leave behind a disaster under these circumstances speaks well of their fortitude.

    Still, I understand your dismay. I have spent many hours removing the dregs left behind by people on their way out the door.

    • Dee, thanks for the comment. It’s not that I’m unaccustomed to this, this is par, just not in this caliber of house. And as far as that goes, I don’t know which is worse…Bank foreclosures or rental property clean ups. Red could tell you some stories about the rentals that I work on.

  4. Hey, any one that blames you is either stupid or looking for a scapegoat. What you do is a thankless job. If there were not people cleaning and maintaining these vacant properies, we could shortly be overrun with vermin or worse. I wish the banks, short of finding ways to keep the homes occupied, would do more to maintain them.

    Thanks for the 411. I was finding it surprising that it seemed people were not the sloths I had expected them to be. You have restored order to my universe. I only had two single family homes I rented, but even the best tenants turned into pigs when they left. Then they didn’t understand why they didn’t get their full deposits back.

    • Thanks Dee.

    • Dee, you have noooooooooooooo idea of some of the cesspools he deals with all the time. Some of the places he has to repair would gag a maggot. Vermin, waste, filth. They call them slumlords for a reason.

      • Thanks for the boost Red. Would like to discuss further, but it will have to wait for the next blog.

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