Monday, April 5, 2010

Home sales on the rise!

Easters out of the way, the Straw Buyer spent the better part of Easter Sunday listening to music and going through property records, some life huh?

Could it be?  Based on what we've seen and heard lately, it looks like the housing market may finally be making a rebound, it appears as if home sales are on the rise!  For the purposes of our discussion, there are two homes in particular whose sales are important, the sale of the home located at 3390 Oak Avenue and the sale of Bernardo Barrera's primary residence located 16562 48th Terrace.

The home located at 3390 Oak Avenue is the property that's at the center of the Bernardo Barrera mortgage fraud case, it's this home that what was over appraised at $600,000 by John Romney and crew to facilitate the mortgage fraud that netted them nearly $400,000.  While the criminal case against the people involved in the fraud has been progressing, the civil foreclosure case has been as well, according to the docket for the foreclosure sale, it looks like the property finally sold at auction for $40,000.  Incredible how just two years earlier this same property appraised for $600,000 and now it's only worth $40,000.  At the very least, this chapter of the story has been closed and Citi Mortgage can finally quantify their losses as a result of this fraud.

The sale that we find most interesting though is the sale of Bernardo Barrera's primary residence, the same home that he purchased back in November 22, 2005 for $289,725 and financed through Citi Mortgage after losing his job.  Back in 2005 when Mr. Barrera committed mortgage fraud for the purchase of the his primary residence, he financed $274,800 with Citi Mortgage, the same lender that lent the money on the Oak Avenue home.  That's what makes this recent sale all the more interesting, take a look at what shows up at the property appraisers office for the home.  Did anyone catch it?  The sales price of the home from November 2009 was $145,000!!!  That means there was $140,000 deficiency at the closing, does anyone think that Mr. Barrera came to closing with a check for $140,000?  We doubt it.  From what we can see it looks like Citi not only got screwed by Mr. Barrera on the Oak Avenue fruad, but they ended up taking it in the pants for $140,000 or more when he sold his primary residence.  Nice going Citi Mortgage! 

Let's look at the deed that Mr. Barrera signed for the sale of his home and see if we find anything that may be of interest to us...

Deed for the Sale of Bernardo Barrera Primary Residence                                                            

First, we get another nice clean copy of Mr. Barrera's signature...

Go back and compare this signature to the ones we discussed last week.  Nice huh?  Now, did anyone notice where this deed was notarized?  Take a look...


Nice huh?  What's Mr. Barrera doing in Panama?  Could he have left the U.S. and hauled ass to Panama or maybe he's just on vacation?  Who knows, but considering the difficulty of extraditing Mr. Barrera from Panama, it would be a great place to hide from possible pending criminal charges now wouldn't it?

We'll discuss tomorrow...

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