by Sam Winston
In Blog Watch today, blogger Ernie The Attorney offers up a horrifying but true story about his recent experience with the Road Home Program. Despite the "good news" that the program will get a federal bailout of $3 billion, this account raises serious concern.
"Following Katrina's devastation Congress allocated money to be given to home-owners who suffered flood damage. Not every one was eligible, but those who were eligible were sent to a 'Road Home closing' that was supposed to be like a regular real estate closing. The net outcome was the State of Louisiana would send the homeowner some money. This is, of course, a complete fairy tale." - Ernie the Attorney writes.
He goes onto explain that while overseeing the closing of friend/client, the money from the Road Home Program never showed up despite being promised/approved in person. What happened over the next 49 days might be familiar to some.
"I have called various phone numbers where usually no one answers and I am told to leave a message (which I dutifully do) and then my call is never returned. If I do manage to win the lottery and speak to a live person, I am told various things (never the same thing) about why the matter is in "pull back status.""
He was, however, able to get to the bottom of this kafkaesque term "pull out status."
"Today I called someone that I had encountered along the way who was very helpful and candid about how screwed up the program is. I won't say who the person is because I'm not at liberty to do that. But one thing I learned was that apparently a lot of closings were put into 'pull back status' because the ICF (the company that runs the Road Home Program) had lost track of which of the two closing companies had handled a batch of applications. So, they just put a blanket hold on a bunch of files."
Click here to read the rest of this blogger's post.