Forestalling foreclosures in Maryland

Purchased almost a decade ago for $19,000, a two-story rowhouse on South Pulaski Street in Southwest Baltimore will sell to a bank for a little more than half of that figure.
 
"Ten thousand dollars.  Any advance on $10,000?” called out an auctioneer outside the Mitchell Courthouse, “Once, twice, third and final call.  Any advance on that figure?  Sold."
 
It's a relative bargain for the bank, a bust for the owner and a virtual eviction for the mother of two who is currently renting the property.
 
"They took me to court and they said that it's foreclosing on so I got to move,” D’Lana Jenkins said. “We're moving tomorrow cause they say we can't stay here cause the bank bought it."
 
According to RealtyTrac, Maryland ranked third in the nation last month in foreclosures with more than 4,000 of them or almost double the number of a year ago.
 
While many states have cleared most of their inventory of distressed properties since the housing bust, Maryland used a moratorium to slow down the process and to give owners time to try to save their homes and to see their values rebound.
 
But some question a new bid by the NAACP and Casa de Maryland for the state to impose an additional six-month ban.
 
"The thing is, 'How long can you keep carrying people for ever and ever and ever?'” said Mindy File, a Northwest Baltimore homeowner, “I feel bad for them, but it's the same thing with the unemployment.  I don't think people should be on unemployment for two years.  That's not realistic, because that means everyone else has to carry them for that long and that's a strain."
 
Already, it takes on average 533 days before a foreclosure here in Maryland, and for people like D'Lana Jenkins, it makes it difficult to find a home for her children that doesn't end up having a revolving door.
 
"This is my third time and it's always foreclosure... always foreclosure," she said 
 
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