(Yeah, the bank probably screwed up here -- AFTER the couple couldn't make their mortgage payments. Not my point anyhow.)
I've posted about this before, but I am so sick of people expecting all sorts of help when they can't meet the terms of an agreement they willingly entered into. When we bought our house - HUGE mistake, right? - we bought at the worst possible time, right before the economy totally went into the shitter. However, we knew what we could afford and REFUSED to consider houses outside our range. No interest-only loans either. Even when I was laid off, we were able to pay the mortgage (and all of our other bills). That was the point. If I knew that interest-only loans were stupid, how is it that so many other people apparently didn't? Strange.
And you know what, we're five years into this 30-year mortgage and we still owe more than it's worth. The value of the house has dropped dramatically and there's not a damn thing we can do about it. Strategic default? Nah. Short sale? Maybe, in a year or two. In the meantime, we continue to pay as much as we can on the mortgage each month and hope for a turnaround.
Sucks that the house across the street is on the market BELOW going rate (looks like the house was willed to someone; there's no note on the house so it's easy to sell it super-low and still make a profit).
I'm depressed just thinking about this.