Foreclosure Coming? How About Bulldozing Your House

Last Updated Feb 23, 2010 5:47 PM EST

It's the kind of story that makes you think about the millions of Americans who aren't quite at the end of their rope, but might be getting close.

Terry Hoskins had been in a multi-year struggle with his bank. He wasn't paying his mortgage - or any of his other debts. Finally, the bank began foreclosure proceedings over his $350,000 Clermont County, Ohio home.

Terry's complaint is that he owed $160,000 on a $350,000 house, but the bank still wanted to foreclose. After dragging this out for 10 years, the bank decided enough was enough. Terry decided that if he couldn't get the bank to agree on a solution other than foreclosure, he might as well bulldoze the house.

In short: If I can't play, I'm taking my ball and heading home.

WLWT created this video that shows a photo of the house before Terry tore it down (nice pool!) and then videotaped the bulldozer in action. In it, Terry explains his rationale for bulldozing his house.

Terry Hoskins Bulldozes His House
What happens next?

The bank will now foreclose on a vacant property (or a pile of debris, if Terry didn't pay to have the remains of the house removed). Terry apparently has other debts, from a business that has failed. He will still owe on those and he may owe the bank money above and beyond what the lot is worth.

I know I've written quite a bit about being underwater with your mortgage and strategic defaults. Bulldozing your house just pushes the concept "strategic default" to a whole new level.

Read more:

Ilyce R. Glink is the author of several books, including 100 Questions Every First-Time Home Buyer Should Ask and the upcoming Buy, Close, Move In!. She blogs about money and real estate at ThinkGlink.com.
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    Ilyce R. Glink is an award-winning, nationally syndicated columnist, best-selling book author, and radio talk show host who also hosts "Expert Real Estate Tips," a Internet video show. She owns ThinkGlink.com as well as Think Glink Media, a privately held company that provides consulting, content and video services to companies and non-profit organizations.

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