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Book description

In Foreclosed, Christopher K. Odinet gives voice to the stories of homeowners that have been neglected, particularly those facing foreclosure and deep financial distress. The book reveals the powerful and often invisible mortgage servicing industry, the tremendous discretionary power it wields over the housing lives of most Americans, and the servicing problems that still persist today. In doing so, it unveils a quiet and dangerous market shift in mortgage servicing - namely, an ongoing move toward a shadow banking sector where regulation is weak - that threatens the stability of our housing finance system. Ultimately, the book demonstrates how the law does not afford homeowners the protection most think and how regulation of these mortgage middlemen remains weak. Foreclosed should be read by anyone concerned with the state of housing and home ownership in the United States.


'An eye-opening and heart-stopping analysis of the role mortgage servicers played in the housing crisis. Odinet reveals the continuing abuses inflicted upon homeowners by this hidden sector of the economy and proposes appropriate regulation. Beautifully written, supported by evidence, and carefully argued - this book is a masterpiece.'

Joseph William Singer - Bussey Professor of Law, Harvard Law School

'As the collapse of the housing market in 2008 starts to recede from view, we seem all too eager to ignore the lessons we should have learned. Christopher K. Odinet’s book explores the largely invisible world of mortgage servicers. They are the primary point of contact between borrowers and lenders, and yet people seldom understand the role they play and power they have. Odinet shows how mortgage servicers exacerbated the devastating effects of the housing crash, and continue to this day to displace people from their homes without any meaningful legal oversight. It is an astonishing story, and one that demands the kind of care that he brings to the problem.'

Christopher Serkin - Vanderbilt University, Tennessee

'Odinet brilliantly exposes the murky world of mortgage servicers - middlemen with immense power and little oversight by others. The labyrinthine securitization process, shadow banks, negligence, and outright fraud and abuse by mortgage servicers have contributed to the distress of property owners and the disregard of their interests. This area calls out for consumer protection. In a compelling book, Odinet tells us why.'

Laura S. Underkuffler - J. DuPratt White Professor of Law, Cornell University, New York

'This is an incredibly important book. At a time when most Americans believe that the financial crisis of 2008 is over, Christopher K. Odinet shows that the truth is otherwise. This is a story of the continuing abuses by mortgage servicers of the lending process, and what can be done to fix it.'

Gregory S. Alexander - A. Robert Noll Professor of Law, Cornell University, New York

'This book is important reading for anyone who has a mortgage. Odinet shines a light on yet another exploitative industry hidden in the shadows of the financial crisis.'

Rashmi Dyal-Chand - Northeastern University, Massachusetts, and author of Collaborative Capitalism in American Cities: Reforming Urban Market Regulations

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