For a brief history of the multiple extensions of the The Mortgage Debt Relief Act of 2007 (“the Act”), go to my June 2017 post here. I predicted at the time that it would be extended through 2018; but I also predicted that news of the extension would be slow in coming, because this law – which no politician in their right mind would actively oppose – was a small bit player in the horse-trading that takes place at the end of each year for tax extenders,  and often is not finally settled until early the following year. Then, once the legislation is passed, it is applied retroactively to January 1 of the preceding year. Continue reading “Mortgage Debt Relief Act Extended Through 2018 – Finally!”

Creditcard and the houseLike the pig through the python, we are still seeing homeowners slowly going through the unpleasant process of foreclosure, seven years after the housing and credit crash began, in earnest, in 2008. Yes, there are fewer than before, but they cause the same trauma and upset they always have. However, some things have changed today.  For example, some banks and servicers have gone back to doing non-judicial sale, which materially speeds up the process.

Accordingly, I thought I’d update my Foreclosure FAQs for 2015.  For those still plagued with questions about the process, this may provide some help and information to make it more understandable and less fearsome.  Go to link here.  Good luck!  ~PCQ

FAQs PicFor those folks still holding their breath about whether the Mortgage Forgiveness Tax Relief Act (“the Act”) will be extended, there are strong signs that it will occur. 
On, Thursday, April 3, 2014, the Senate Finance Committee, chaired by Sen. Ron Wyden D-Or, took up the “tax extenders” issue, which includes the Act. Tax extenders” is a fancy term for political pork served up for certain favored groups that have the ear of various politicians.  But rather than being accused of doling out permanent tax breaks for special interests, these perks are created on a “temporary” basis [wink, wink], and then quietly “extended” annually ad infinitumContinue reading “Will The Mortgage Forgiveness Act Be Extended?”

FAQs PicFor those folks experiencing, or about to experience, a “1099 event” resulting from a short sale, deed-in-lieu-of-foreclosure or foreclosure in 2014, these are harrowing times. Will Congress extend the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act and Debt Cancellation law (the “Forgiveness Law”)? It was enacted in 2007 so that homeowners would not be taxed on the cancellation of debt that occurs when they dispose of a home that is “underwater,” i.e. the home’s mortgage exceeds its value. Continue reading “Querin Law Update: Will The Tax Forgiveness Law Be Extended to 2014?”

DecisionEver been overwhelmed at all the laws, rules, and regulations affecting what might otherwise be a simple residential real estate transaction? Ever wished there was a place you could go to find everything you needed in one place?  Now you can! Enjoy! [Go to link here]




sillouette coupleAn unfortunate fact of life is that housing and financial problems can metastasize, destroying marriages and families. When this happens, despite the cloud of unhappiness that hovers over a couple’s life during these times, differences should be set aside when it comes to how to dispose of the family home. Continue reading “QUERIN LAW: Distressed Property, Distressed Marriage (2013)”


The local and national real estate markets have been on the ropes for five years. The third quarter of 2007 was the statistical peak for housing prices in the Portland-Metro area.  From that point forward, the real estate market went into a downward spiral from which it has never fully recovered. 

However, the third quarter of 2012 was the first time since the third quarter of 2007 that home prices have actually increased over the prior year.  Bend, Oregon is experiencing the same resurgence.

So for those homeowners still awash in negative equity, 2013 may be the last and best year to complete a short sale with a minimum of adverse consequences.  This is especially true since this year we know that if a home is short sold [or foreclosed, or deeded back in lieu of foreclosure] the seller will not have to pay income tax on the cancelled debt.[1]  We don’t know if the forgiveness law will be extended into 2014. The extension for this year was not even announced until early January 2013, causing a lot of anxiety for homeowners who were unable to complete their short sales by December 31, 2012.

What follows are a series of FAQs based upon the latest information I have acquired while consulting with homeowners on their foreclosure avoidance options. ~ PCQ Continue reading “2013 Short Sale FAQs [Part One]”

Introduction. After three years of counseling folks in the throes of making a distressed housing decision, I have to honestly ask myself if loan modification today is a prudent, wise, or productive endeavor.  Regrettably, in most – though not all – cases, the answer is an emphatic “No.”  Of the many consumer advocates, attorneys, and counselors out there, I may be in the minority.  But I suspect that of the many consumers who have gone through the modification process, I am in the majority. Continue reading “The Myth of Lender Modification”

January 29, 2013 was a very bad day for Diane Hathaway.  That was the day she pled guilty to bank fraud, committed in the course of securing her lender’s consent to a short sale of her Michigan manse in Gross Pointe Park.  The home reportedly carried a $1.4 million mortgage with online bank, Ing Direct,[1] and was short selling for $850,000.  Apparently, fearing that the lender would pursue them for the entire deficiency[2], she and her husband decided to claim financial hardship by concealing and shifting assets, including a second home in Florida. Continue reading “Short Sale Fraud – Hard Time For A Bogus Hardship”

“To be forewarned is to be forearmed.”

The term “deficiency” arises in the context of a borrower’s default to their lender.  It refers to the difference between what the lender/servicer recovers, e.g. through short sale, deed-in-lieu-of-foreclosure (“DIL”), or foreclosure, and the total debt owing.  Let’s go through each one, and see how and when the issue is likely to arise:

1.     Short Sales. This is a sale of the distressed property where the net sale proceeds [after deducting costs of sale, such as real estate commissions, escrow, title insurance and recording fees] are insufficient to pay the total indebtedness due, i.e. principal, interest, late fees, and lender advances, such as property taxes and insurance. The difference between the amount recovered and the amount due is the “deficiency.” Continue reading “Borrower Exposure to Deficiency Risk”