Become a digitalPLUS subscriber. 99¢ for 4 weeks.

Coverage of foreclosure protest lacked facts

ForeclosuresProperty TaxHomesProtestDeutsche Bank AG

This letter is in regard to your recent coverage of the foreclosure protest in Union Square ("Occupy Baltimore members gather to fight foreclosure," Jan. 11). As a reader and subscriber to the online and print editions of The Sun, I am disappointed because the article lacked facts and background information that could have made it great.

It's also a situation that ties into many issues The Sun has covered recently such as "Occupy" protest, the city's high property tax rate, foreclosures, short sales, disillusion at large banks receiving special treatment that little people do not, and human interest about the plight of our elderly.

A quick check of the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation shows that homeowner Lila Kara bought her house on May 9, 2006 for $262,500. She was approximately 60 years old then. The annual property tax bill is $4,479 based on the current assessed value of her house. And she would not receive much, if any, of a Homestead tax credit because she has lived there a short period of time, as your article points out.

That $4,479 a year is in addition to her mortgage payment. Did Ms. Kara not realize how much her taxes would be because her real estate broker failed to explain how property taxes are calculated? Deutsche Bank transferred the house from Ms. Kara on August 18, 2001 for $140,250. Why is there a difference in the price? Did Deutsche Bank take a loss similar to that of a short sale? Could someone look at the foreclosure file in the Circuit Court for Baltimore City?

Next, the reporter should have obtained more background information about Ms. Kara to help the reader understand her situation.

Is the greedy Deutsche Bank responsible for giving a loan without verifying Ms. Kara's income? What is Ms. Kara's income? Has Ms. Kara's health or income situation changed since she bought the house? Did Ms. Kara make a bad business decision assuming she would sell the house in a few years for more than she paid for it? How much was her down payment?

Why have the Occupy protesters chosen to help? Why her? Was it because she contacted them and did they check out her circumstances or just arrange a protest for the first person that walked through their door?

Please provide basic facts and provide background information before you print another article like this. May I suggest an in-depth article of this type on Ms. Kara or a similar person in the future? The lack of facts and background information makes me question why I pay for The Sun.

Charles Fitzpatrick, Baltimore

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
ForeclosuresProperty TaxHomesProtestDeutsche Bank AG
  • What did Hogan tell the NRA?
    What did Hogan tell the NRA?

    Based on what Republican gubernatorial candidate Larry Hogan has said about gun control, it's hard to see what the National Rifle Association would find appealing about him. He has said that although he opposed the strict new gun control legislation Gov. Martin O'Malley championed two...

  • The euro must go
    The euro must go

    Europe faces yet another recession, and the prospect is shaking global financial markets. To eliminate the persistent threat of collapse, Europe must drop the euro, and Germany must abandon mercantilism.

  • New driver's license law undermines security
    New driver's license law undermines security

    "Wow, this doesn't really look like you," said what seemed like the hundredth person examining my driver's license photo.

  • Could the U.S. have prevented the Ebola outbreak?
    Could the U.S. have prevented the Ebola outbreak?

    In the summer of 1990, some 2,000 U.S. Marines arrived off the coast of Liberia near the capital of Monrovia, which was then being overrun by rebel forces fighting against the government of Samuel Doe. The Marines were in four ships, one of them an amphibious landing craft.

  • Falling gas prices [Poll]
    Falling gas prices [Poll]
  • Messing with voting rights in Texas
    Messing with voting rights in Texas

    If there was evidence that voter fraud was prevalent — or even a serious possibility — then perhaps the Supreme Court's ruling early Saturday allowing Texas to impose one of the strictest voter photo identification laws in the country would make sense. Instead what the...