Extreme Makeover Beneficiaries Lose their Home

ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition is one of those uplifting shows which so captivate the viewing audience. A “deserving” family is picked from thousands of entrants to receive a new home complete with bells and whistles.

A “deserving” family is one which has had to deal with a tragic loss, a debilitating illness or a natural disaster. At the risk of sounding obtusely indifferent, I’m still not sure how tragedy makes one deserving of material possessions. That one might be compelled to offer up said things to those who are hurting is one thing, but to say that these things are deserved on the grounds of suffering, well that’s another.

Perhaps it is more egregious when the one undergoing suffering demands charity on the grounds of their suffering, for in that instance pride has manifested it’s fiendish head. As Dr. Piper wrote,

Self-pity is the response of pride to suffering.

Self-pity says, “I deserve admiration because I have sacrificed so much.”

Self-pity is the voice of pride in the heart of the weak.

Self-pity sounds self-sacrificing.

A Georgia family who received a new home through the efforts of this program is about to lose that home, ‘Extreme Makeover’ house faces foreclosure.

According to the story, the family used the house as collateral for a $450K loan. The loan was for a now failed business venture. What the story does is seemingly frame the situation as if somehow the owners are victims of the foreclosure epidemic raging across the land. For example,

Three years later, the reality TV show’s most ambitious project at the time has become the latest victim of the foreclosure crisis.

Isn’t this typical? Take out a loan you can’t pay, lose your home as a result: you’re the victim. It is always somebody else’s fault, just sit back and pick the culprit. Popular ones are President Bush, oil companies, the evil bank that gave you the loan that you asked for and signed off on, et al.

I post this with the understanding that there have been lenders who have misled home buyers.

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4 Responses to Extreme Makeover Beneficiaries Lose their Home

  1. abdul rahim says:

    yeah the story is infuriating; it shows what america has become

  2. katdish says:

    give a man a fish…

    I think it’s cool that they help out families in need. But the sadder the story, the bigger the ratings. So, to some extent, their stories are being exploited for financial gain. I realize that they create spectacular spaces because it’s “tv”, but some of the over the top stuff they do seems so indulgent that it bugs me — especially the themed kids rooms. All the work and expense for something that the kid will outgrow in 3 years or less. I often talk clients out of uber themed rooms for their kids for that very reason.

  3. Isolated Incident says:

    Next you’re going to blame the CRA, ACORN, and Jimmy Carter/Bill Clinton for the fact that banks (hardly just Fannie/Freddie) were making loans without doing credit checks and with no income verification. They saw a market for such loans and they exploited them.

    Tell us – when you go to the bank to finance a house you wish to buy, who tells you how much you can borrow? That’s right – it’s the bank’s job to do due diligence and provide loans that the borrower is capable of repaying. Last I checked, banks weren’t being punished for not making loans they knew would default – but the borrowers and taxpayers surely are now. In fact, the CRA specifically mandates that member banks (and far from all of the lenders in question were even members – see above statement about recognizing a market for such loans) DO THEIR DUE DILIGENCE and verify income and credit worthiness.

    Alas, the culprit was greed. They made these loans, bundled them up, and sold them off on the credit DEFAULT swap market. Greed. Period.

    Now, to the family that is the subject of this article: isolated incident. Stupid people borrowed money they spent unwisely after having their home turned into a valuable property. It happens every day – the question is: Why do you care so much about it to the extent that you’re dishonestly using the incident as an example.

  4. Laz says:

    Iso,
    Actually my beef is mainly with the portrayal of the family’s “victim status” by the writer of the story.

    I fail to see how someone who, as you alluded to, stupidly borrowed money and spent it unwisely is a “victim of the foreclosure crisis”.

    As for the culprits I mentioned, these are just examples of the many others told me about in actual conversations.

    Obviously you chose to skip over the post’s last sentence or you just didn’t see it.

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