Thursday, February 26, 2009


I'm looking for life insurance, its actually pretty difficult and not a topic I like to discuss at all! Who wants to think of those things anyways, not when your 25. But it is the responsible thing to do when your a parent and looking to purchase a home.

Anyways, I ended up going through matrixdirect to find an insurance company to insure me. Why? Because in 2007 I had gastric bypass surgery. Thats the one where they cut down the size of your stomach. Well after a loss of over 130 lbs I am much much much healthier, physically and mentally! What was more amazing was I was pregnant 3 months after the surgery and have a wonderful little daughter for it too! And those doctors told me to terminate the pregnancy here are my sentiments! :P

Why does this have anything to do with life insurance? Because currently I have only found one that will insure me because of the surgery. Lets see, I lost over 130 lbs, I don't have diabetes, no high blood pressure, my mental capabilities are much better, i exercise, I eat right, I even had a child which I was infertile before the surgery. There are many corrections and benefits from the surgery itself, so I cannot understand why in this day and age of risk, would life insurance companies not look at me and say, yes she had surgery but boy, she is in much better health, and a lot less risk at this time!

Now I know it is probably because there are no long term studies or even records about the surgery really in its known capacity. However, I am no worse off, and in some cases, even better off than those who can't have the surgery.

So to matrixdirect for their help in finding an insurance company, I appreciate it! And let all those others out there know that we're people, we're less risky, and we're very very healthy! The amount of physical and mental testing we have to go through just to have the surgery! The counseling, the labs, all the doctors visits....ummm yeah we're worth insuring trust me!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Why Interviewing is Not Productive

Often while interviewing, the hiring manager already knows who exactly they are looking for. While often the qualifications on the resume have a lot to do with this, so does the overall interaction and personality of the person who is being interviewed.

My largest issue with interviews is not knowing how I did or where to improve. While I can't say that I have interviewed hundreds of times to know if my techniques work or not, I've had enough to know that I either I am doing something wrong or I am simply not desireable. Well, I hardly think it is the last. I think that employers are often intimidated that I have dreams of persuing much greater things such as my masters, a law degree, and my CPA among other things. I simply am too ambitious for the positions that I am applying for. However, that doesn't mean that I don't need it. I need the experience and the backing of a company, the guidance and mentoring that they can provide. If provided, I couldn't very well just leave them in the dust!

Anyways back to interviewing, as I said it is very difficult to know how well you did during the interview. Much less where you can improve unless you wish to pay for services that simulate the interviewing process. Those can be very costly, and may or may not relate to the interview that you may be in.

I fully believe that a new system should be developed that would allow employers to give a basic rating system for those that they interview. Through a very basic site, which hopeful candidates enroll in at no fee, employers can log on and rate the candidate through set options (otherwise liability and defemation of character suits would prevail) that would take no more than 2 to 3 minutes at the most. Obviously, this system would not provide full details but such things as did you present yourself well, did you speak well, did you identify your strengths and weaknesses, and did you show actual honest interest in the position and the company. It would be educational! Obviously, employers are very busy at this time with so many candidates as the country is facing unprecendented unemployment, I think that this would go further to assist those of us looking for positions to hone our skills and communications. Maybe we would back off on applying for jobs that we really don't want and that we aren't qualified for. I would simply like more feedback! What am I doing wrong? What am I doing right? Am I doing anything right??? I would imagine that alot of people could benefit from such a system.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Mortgage Modification Scams

I write this first of all because I have experience in mortgage servicing and secondly because people are losing money already,they are losing their homes, and they are being taken advantage of....not by the lending houses, but my so called consumer and homeowner advocates and law firms. I won't say that predatory lending didn't exist, it did and it was wide spread and all were culprits. So were consumers, they actively committed fraud on contracts by stating they had income amounts that they most certainly did not!! However, whatever the issue is, there are too many foreclosures at this time and until the market re-corrects itself people need their loans modified.

My parents received such a letter from the Loan Modification Department telling them that they were about to miss out on the opportunity to have their loan modified based on the federal aid. Of course this scared my parents, who at this time don't exactly need it modified, but if their situation to change (i.e. my father lose his job), they would need help. However, this letter seemed to all appearance to be directly from the lender, GMAC. And it was PREDATORY!!! Low and behold, it was a law firm, their name was not even printed anywhere on the letter, just a short fine print message at the bottom say this was not in fact GMAC and that they had no association with GMAC. They also wanted money upfront to start the process...

OMG - The first words out of my mouth to my parents, was report, report, report! This is predatory. First of all, to go out looking for customer to potentially modify their loans, but for a fee, because they may lose out on the opportunity is fraudulent.


There will be fees involved in the actual modification of the loan, because you are altering a contract, it has to be recorded, and it requires witnesses, and such just as was required when you first made the mortgage contract to begin with. What I am talking about is those crooks out there saying pay me and I'll go to your mortgage company and negotiate for you. Pay them for what? You're paying them to send a template letter called a QWR a qualified written request, which they probably got off or a similar site. And what is this QWR asking for? LOAN DOCUMENTS! Those same documents you have yourself, personally, in a safe place!!!! Do you know what they are going to do with these loan documents? Absolutely nothing, because they have scammed too many people into thinking that they can help, when they don't have any better chances than you yourselves do. They also believe that if they get enough people to sign up with them, they can flood the mortgage companies with all these requests (which in truth aren't actually QWRs) because due to the RESPA act mortgage companies must acknowledge and respond to these letter or face penalties, fines, and potential law suits. Well if all the petty, greedy little people out there who have jumped on this scam send 30 letters a day, do you believe that the company can faithfully work the issues? HELL NO!

From the lips of those that work for mortgage servicing, a lawyer, an advocate, or anyone else acting on your behalf for a loan modification, will not receive a better deal and will not get it more quickly than you yourself. It will take longer in fact because they have to have your permission, your financials, and all your information that only you can provide. Which means you have to wait for their busy office to sort, record, and file all your information, before sending it to the mortgage company so that they can begin their process.

Secondly, the federal assistance program that mortgage lenders are using does not help you if it is not your primary residence. If the property that you are losing is an investment property, that is your own risk. Do not waste the mortgage company's valuable time that they could be spending actually putting through modifications for those who need it to keep a roof over their and their children's heads. Its shameful! Investment = Risk. Live with it. The only way to modify an investment property at this point is to refinance completely. If that is not possible, then your investment was a loss, you'll live.

Thirdly, you will need to provide accurate and detailed information regarding your finances. Do you really want an unknown third party who popped up overnight, asking for $1,500 of your precious money, to have this information? Do they promise not to sell your information to other companies? If not, what valuable and private information have you provided them that could potentially lead to identity theft? There is a lot to think about, and not simply that you are paying cash, and a lot of it up front. Who are these people, why weren't they here before it got bad? Where will they be in a year from now?

Now I will always come down hard on brokers, because they are sells people and they are shady, and were predatory. From my own experience I do not like them and the fact that they pushed all these Pay Option ARMS and Interest Only ARMS and hybrids just really pisses me off. But these new guys are the scum on the feet of the brokers, praying on those already down and broken. I have not heard a single one that has really assisted a homeowner without a price, that the homeowner could not have gotten the assistance directly with a toll free phone call.

Ohh, and loan audits. Fancy name for looking over a loan history, which you can do yourself and customer service will be glad to answer questions if you have any that you can't identify. Or even try going to a friend who knows a little something about mortgages. But don't put your hard earned money into something that is common sense.

Reluctant SAHM

I love my daughter, she wasn't planned for, but I love her to pieces and then some. However, I had always planned on having a career before having children, and if not, working like so many other mothers out there to ensure that she has the best life possible. My husband supports us well, while we struggle most months, we are at least able to make it. He earns too much for us to qualify for assistance but too little to get us anywhere. We are having to live with my parents because we haven't been able to afford to rent an apartment or house on our own, since this area is way over inflated! We've been here for 2 years now and going nuts, besides which my parents need a home of their own without children bothering them and I don't know how they can stand it much longer. Which is why I must work. I was finishing my degree when I had my daughter, and stayed home for the first year of her life to finish it completely. To have a college degree, a bachelor of science, and in accounting! It was a dream of mine. So after nearing completion of my degree back in October 2008, I started looking for work. I had a graduation date all set and was simply finishing out the last classes, so I thought that looking for work would be ideal. I have posted on so many different job boards, I can't possibly name them all, however a few are Careerbuilder, Monster, JobFox,, Indeed, Dice, Accountinggigs, iHireAccountings, and various staffing agencies, Accountemps, SelectStaff, Sage Staffing, AppleOne, ManPower, Volt...From mid-October to February I averaged 5 applications a day. So, do the math, 5 a day for 105 days approximately is 525 jobs that I have applied to, this does not include the ones that I have printed resumes and applications and walked in for. Yes it is the worst economy and job market in history, yes I have no experience in accounting, and yes we're out in the middle of the Antelope Valley away from civilization it seems. However, do all employers believe that education counts for nothing???? That my putting four years of my life and earning a bachelor's degree in accounting, means that I'm completely worthless and couldn't even do an accounting clerks job?

Per the occupation outlook handbook, new graduates in accounting in my area should be earning roughly between 40-50k a year. I've been brought down to asking for 12$ an hour which is less than what I was earning when I was an office assistant!!!!! In fact, at an interview with AppleOne, I said that I wanted no less than $37,000 and was laughed at and was told that I was reaching for the stars because I didn't have experience. Excuse me?

So let me set the record straight....

1. I have an associate degree in business management
2. I have a bachelor's degree in acccounting

I have attended college for 6 years now, and will continue when I go back for my masters as it seems I have no other options other than to educate myself beyond certain positions.

I guess it falls back to the same question in the move "Secret of My Success", in which Michael J Fox asks, "How can I get experience if no one will hire me?" in response that he too did not have enough experience for a position.

What am I to do? How will I fulfill my dream? I've applied directly to the Big 4 and other large accounting firms, local accounting firms seem to have the same prejudice against those of us non-experienced, and the government here is cutting back drastically!

So at this point of time, I am a reluctant SAHM. I love watching my daughter grow and develop, learn to play with her tiny fingers and how to say One. Yet, to provide the home that she deserves and the life I have promised to provide for my family, I must, absolutely, must find work.

So this is to all you employers out there. Education means something still! If you don't know what, read the curriculum of the school of the individual in question. You might just find out that their classwork prepares them much better and to the standards of the industry than experience can. As in accounting when all the rules must be followed, experience = bad habits and shady practices, education coursework = MUST follow the GAAP, GAAS, the FASB, and the IASB, and GASB, and all other standards set for accountants, auditors, and other assurance providers.

A New Dollar

In a heated discussion with my husband last night, he said that he believed that the dollar would need to be replaced due to the deflation of it. Pretty soon, what we know as a dollar will be worth much much less, and is already around the world.

Is it possible to replace the dollar however? On which the strongest country in the world is based upon, that many global markets use as currency, and that which any corporation doing business in the United States must convert their books to? Is it possible to rewrite the entire accounting standards, tax codes, employment laws, investment laws, based on a new form of currency. Well granted I have not really looked into the history of the Euro, but I do know that the forms of currency that were condensed did not have the stature of the US Dollar. I sincerely believe that to even attempt such practice would meet in failure and expense that is unnecessary. Obviously, we're having some pains from how weak the dollar is,and it is likely to continue to weaken. Just take a look at our stock markets, the lowest they have been in over 6 years. It will continue to go down, but as with human beings in general, it will get so low, that it becomes a bargin, and people will get greedy again.

So for all those out there that may be thinking along the same lines of my husband, yes things are drastic, but not that drastic.

Why Asking an Economic Historian is Stupid!

So everyone is aware of our current state of economy, or lack there of rather. We are all searching for answers to when is the bottom going to hit, are we in a depression, is it just a recession, what will happen to the dollar? More importantly, we also asking about our security in our jobs, our homes, and simply the status of our lives. Lets not broach the subject of OctoMom and her affect on economy yet, we'll get to that later. Currently, I am tired, oh so tired, of seeing the governemnt, organizations, and individuals, asking economic historians what to do!

Why is that? Well simply that our society has never, and I mean NEVER, experienced a similar situation. Why? There are so many different problems in today's current economy its hard to even start. First of all, there has never been a housing bubble as what we saw burst. This housing bubble was a main source of income and investment for many individuals and companies out there. When you take away such a large source of funding, entire industries collapse, as you can see. The banks, the home builders, the suppliers, the auto companies, small businesses that service homeowners, and luxury retailers are suffering. Electronics has been hit unbelievably hard, but maybe people have realized that having 5 flat screen tvs is unnecessary. Maybe not. Secondly, we are only now just seeing the extent of the baby boomers and social security, this is unprecendented. Baby boomers are retiring now, and with social security already stretched to the max...those same baby boomers are not leaving their jobs. Which means those like myself, a new graduate, can't find a job. Leaving more and more people out of work and unemployed, or underemployed. Not that I have anything against baby boomers, but as a society we need to understand this. At one point, we told them that they could retire at 60, then when they hit 60, we said no, you have to be 62, now it is 67, they will never be able to retire...So jobs are only open to those that have experience, not education. Besides which companies get perks by having employed the elderly...

So the classic model won't work...DUH..Of course it never did really since there is never 100% employement (meaning that everyone who wants to work is working) And Keynsian theory
doesn't apply either at this point. LR and SR supply and demand aggregates are so skewed at this point, that you can compare them to even the years of the great depression or after WWII. So, please, everyone stop wasting our valuable and hard earned money going to economist to figure out based on past trends where the economy is going. This is new, this is unprecendented, and one day models will be based off of it. Until that day however, we simply need to ride it out and accept that other than assumptions and theorys that are unfounded and have very little be based on, we are on our own.