Suicide and the Housing Market

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on January 30, 2009

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It’s hard to find a tale much sadder than this recent news from Los Angeles about a man who killed his wife, himself and their five beautiful children. Real estate woes loom prominently in the story.

According to the Daily Breeze, Ervin Lupoe and his wife bought their suburban Los Angeles home for $290,000 in 2003, borrowing the entire amount. They refinanced it twice during the boom, taking out a total of $630,000. Then, apparently to help pay for child care, Ervin lied about his income and forged documents, a move that cost both he and his wife what would likely have been stable jobs working at a local hospital.

Ervin, a former Marine, blamed the hospital for his actions in a suicide note faxed to a local TV station.

Reader Comments

Joe

January 30, 2009 11:29 PM

How tragic... As a real estate agent myself, I deal with many clients with lack of money or bad credit to borrow loans. I just feel sad about what happened... If you're struggling to sell your house in a market like this, you should take a look at my review before looking at anything else. It will tell you how to sell house quickly.

Snoz

February 2, 2009 7:04 PM

There is blood on the hands of those who pushed and preached that real estate is path to riches. The wicked souls in the real estate business and those who sold their allegiance to them for shares of silver and gold are equally responsible for the growing tragedies caused by the real estate collapse. Those in the media, including Gopal and Palmeri, who advocated, or insinuated or collaborated in planting the notion of this get-rich-quick scheme in the minds of the commoners should now get on their knees beg for redemption, forgiveness, and repentence. The cost of disobedience: Karma is just around the corner.

surprised

February 4, 2009 4:19 PM

? RIP all - looks like a life of expedients was coming to its natural end, though - not sure what it has to do with the housing market.

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About

BusinessWeek editors Chris Palmeri, Prashant Gopal and Peter Coy chronicle the highs and lows of the housing and mortgage markets on their Hot Property blog. In print and online, the Hot Property team first wrote about the potential downside of lenders pushing riskier, "option ARM" mortgages and the rise in mortgage fraud back in 2005—well ahead of many other media outlets. In 2008, Hot Property bloggers finished #1 in a ranking of the world's top 100 "most powerful property people" by the British real estate website Global edge. Hot Property was named among the 25 most influential real estate blogs of 2007 by Inman News.

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