Homes for the Rest of Us is my response to the mess that is the finance industry. The Harvard MBAs screwed up the whole finance thing. So how are people supposed to get houses? We'll just have to take care of ourselves. And each other.
I don't know exactly how this will work, but I am pretty damn sure we can make it happen.
There's this great program called Kiva.org that allows people to make micro-loans to entrepreneurs, mostly in emerging or plain dysfunctional economies. These entrepreneurs use the loans to buy baskets for their laundry business or seeds for their half-acre "farms." They pay back the money the best they can.
This is America, though. Comparatively, we're rich as all-get-out. We can give much bigger "micro" loans to people who can't get mortgage financing any other way. And, besides, have you read paper? The whole world is a dysfunctional economy.
So here's what I'm looking for:
* Some honest lawyers who know what kind of non-profit corporation we have to set up * Some honest lawyers to help us (volunteers) * Some finance or banking people (volunteers) * Some lenders to get the ball rolling (volunteers, sort of) * Some borrowers who need money to buy a home (these shouldn't be difficult to find) * Many passionate people who want to help in any way they can
We'll need to create some basic rules and set some return rate. The loans will probably very high risk, but the interest rates probably won't reflect the level of risk compared to other investment options. That's okay, though. People are good and want to help each other.
I don't want to put banks out of business--they have their job in society. But I think it will take a generation of grad students before we really trust that group to finance home mortgages again. And I know a lot of people who don't want to wait that long.
If you want to help, forward the link to this site to everyone you know. Just getting some eyes on the page and ideas on the forum will help.
Great movements start with tiny actions, and this is about the tiniest action I could think of. So it will have to work.
Who says conservatives won't help their fellow human? Did I mention that this is a non-profit?