By all appearances, Aaron Wider is the chief executive of a flourishing mortgage bank in Garden City, issuing more than $33 million in home loans to buyers across Nassau and Suffolk counties over the past four years.
A closer look at his lending practices, however, reveals that many of these loans relied on faulty appraisals and exaggerated loan applications, leaving behind angry homeowners who are struggling to pay mortgages on overpriced homes.
If the allegations are true, it suggests that Wider and his associates turned a profit on the real-estate deals by selling homes at inflated prices; issuing loans to cover those higher prices; and selling off the loans to other banks, thereby eliminating his responsibility for the loans if the borrowers stopped paying their mortgage. The two banks are seeking $19 million in damages.
If you want to see what has happened on Long Island since the bottom fell out, check out these maps:
Western Suffolk County
Eastern Suffolk County
My neighborhood (in Western Suffolk) falls into the 36 - 62% foreclosure rate, up 132% in the last couple years. You see why I been running around with my hair on fire? Every other house has a 'For Sale' sign on it. We got problems.