Foreclosures take heavy toll on hearts and minds of Mercedians who lose their homes
Two weeks ago, a retired telephone company worker named Ethelda Lopez watched as her dream retirement home was auctioned off on the lawn outside a county courthouse in downtown Merced.
From courthouse steps, woman sees dream dissolve
Ethelda Lopez, her husband, teenage daughter and two dogs still live in their four-bedroom, three-bath brown ranch home in Atwater's countryside -- but much has changed.
Clinging to hope and home
Elected and appointed officials said the psychological trauma spawned by home foreclosures in Merced County poses a serious challenge, but that recent cuts to state mental health funding makes treatment hard to get.
Falling Down: Woman, 66, faces fears day and night as foreclosure looms
It became clear when the fall from her bed left a gaping hole in her mouth: the stress from imminent foreclosure had taken over her thoughts -- day and night.
Renters, beware of trapdoor
For the Matthews family, it's already a tight fit. But it promises to get tighter -- and more stressful. Sam Matthews, 28, his wife, three children, brother and mother share a five-bedroom, two-story home they've rented in a pleasant, new North Merced development.
Out of job, out of home?
"I knew just looking around my neighborhood that a lot of people would be losing their homes. I never thought I'd be one of them."
Then, the unimaginable happened: she lost her job.
U.S. senators say they're focused on foreclosures
In Washington, the state's two U.S. senators issued statements in response to the Sun-Star series.
Few are getting loan modifications
WASHINGTON -- Conceding that its initial mortgage relief program has been less than successful, the Treasury Department on Thursday announced new rules to simplify and speed the decision-making process for struggling borrowers trying to modify the terms of their distressed mortgages.
Champagne to crowbars: Realtor Krotik shifts from selling dreams to tending empty homes
Wedding dresses, baby pictures, drapes, puppies and live pigs. A short list of some of the items Atwater Realtor Andy Krotik has found in the lifeless rooms of foreclosed homes.
Replay live chat
Replay the live chat about the foreclosure crisis and its health effects with local experts on mental health.