October 14, 2010
This latest national crises over foreclosures, with banks putting a freeze on evictions because of shoddy paperwork, is interesting because most of the examples cited in the newspapers are clearly not injustices against homeowners but merely lawyers seizing on technicalities. For example, the NYT's "From this House, a National Foreclosure Freeze," makes no attempt to say that the lady who has been living in the house without paying a dime for two years has any moral claim to more free housing or that better paperwork handling would have led to any other outcome.
On the other hand, raising the fixed costs of housing transactions by enforcing costly paperwork procedures is probably a good idea in the long run. It would make flipping and, thus, housing bubbles a little less likely.