My ‘Hood

…which could essentially reference the entire United States at this point.

I tweeted this a while ago: I just drove through my neighborhood coming back from the store – lots of foreclosed homes – it’s so fucking depressing. This is wrong!

Yes, so very wrong on many levels. My neighborhood is becoming vacant, and I live in a nice old neighborhood. My house was built in 1959. How many families have lost their homes now? Too many. Here are some stats I found: 1.9 MILLION FORECLOSURE FILINGS REPORTED ON MORE THAN 1.5 MILLION U.S. PROPERTIES IN FIRST HALF OF 2009
I won’t go into the semantics about how wrong this title is, but the point is that in the first half of this year – 2009 – more than 1.9 million homes foreclosed. That’s a lot, people. Mine isn’t quite there yet, but that’s just around the corner. It’s all a matter of paperwork, really. I’d really rather do a short sale or something to save my credit from the foreclosure, but my credit has taken quite the beating this last year so I guess it doesn’t matter anymore. The issue with me is that I really have nowhere else to go.
Empty houses with a piece of paper taped to the window. Bank owned, awaiting auction. Why do I know this? Because the house next door to me has been vacant for… what month is this now, August?… 8 months. Someone finally went in there to clean about a month ago. Guess where all my sewer roaches are coming from? Yay, isn’t this fucking fun?
My neighbor’s situation was a bit different from the rest of the country, in that it was his mother’s home and once his son and daughter-in-law moved to Washington, I guess he didn’t want to stay there by himself. He turned it over to the bank. Unfortunately, for many other families out there, the story is all too familiar these days – someone’s lost their job, someone fell prey to predatory lending, someone isn’t able to find work, and someone can’t make their mortgage payment for one or all of those reasons. I say all because I fit in that “all of the above” category.
And yet, the government gives the banks a bailout. I don’t see how it’s helping. I know it won’t happen overnight. I’m not an idiot. But by the time it all kicks in, how many families will be homeless?
Yes, I know there are programs, but guess what? Those programs don’t help someone like me. No sirree, they don’t. Those programs don’t help the man/woman who’s been looking for a job over the last 9 or 10 months and just can’t find one. They don’t help someone who has no income coming in whatsoever and it’s partly because of the economy that they have no income. A new In-and-Out Burger opened up near the mall a couple of months back, and I heard that over 1,000 people showed up for their job fair. When I had an interview (one of the three I’ve had) a while back for a bartending position, 120 people showed up to apply and interview for four openings. The only people contacting me about jobs are offering sales positions. I’m trying to figure out where the hell on my resume it says I have experience in this field after years in manufacturing, clerical, behavioral health, and a background in graphic design. I hate sales. I never could do it. And I don’t think it’s a very promising position in this economy because nobody is buying anything. I can barely sell stuff on eBay, and even then, it goes dirt cheap.
Now, let’s take a look at the unemployment statistics, shall we? According to the US Department of Labor and their Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate last month (July) was 9.4%. That’s 14.5 million people! The prior month, I believe, was at 9.5%. Not much change there, folks.
Plain and simple, I need a job, along with 14.5 million other people. If I can’t find a job in Arizona, whose unemployment rate is high at the moment, I need to sell everything I have to move someplace where I CAN find a job and where the cost of living is much MUCH cheaper. And guess where that somewhere is – the fucking Bible Belt. Yep, that’s where the jobs are and it’s cheap to live there.
Great. I’ve always wanted to live in a place where tornadoes are a seasonal threat. (see side note about my sarcasm)
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10 thoughts on “My ‘Hood

  1. Hi :)What a heartfelt blog post.I've said to many that the US Gov't should have given the Trillion dollars directly to the home owners. Unfortunately real life doesn't work that way, and the banks gets $$$ and give themselves fat bonuses too! Aaaargh!I can definitely empathize with your situation.Wishing you all the best,love @RKCharronxoxo

  2. I think that the moment you give trillions of dollars to homeowners, the businesses who engaged in all the predatory lending and whatnot will take your newfound money with the same old scams and the money will only end up filling the coffers of people who don't have ANYONES best interests in mind. Giving it to the banks isn't the best solution, but trying to trust that much money to that many people would be the world's most epic cluster****. Not saying that you're one of those people, but there are plenty of people who bought homes that were way to expensive due to either A) their own ignorance of the housing market B) the general bubble that was fueled by realators who honestly would never have seen this coming and C) banks engaging in all of the mortgages and whatnot that came with it. Giving each and every one of these people a bunch of money with the good will hope that they'd use it to fix their housing situations wouldn't solve anything. It's a paradigm shift in America, and the culture that comes out the other end won't be the culture that went into it. I just don't think that the solutions are going to be easy to accept OR enact, and we're not near that point yet.

  3. Matt – rants are good. I always enjoy a good rant. No need to apologize for it. =)HC – this is true, and OZ would be a blast!Gary – thank you. =)

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