Mike Lee, citizen senator

May 19, 2012

I think this brings Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) much closer to the average American than the ultra-rich limousine-liberal senators who claim to represent those Americans:

Less than two years into office, Sen. Mike Lee was forced to sell his dream home in Alpine with his mortgage bank taking a significant loss — up to $400,000 — in a “short sale” as the housing bust in his neighborhood drained his house’s value.

Lee purchased the home for around $1.1 million in January 2008, at the height of the housing boom and when he was working as a private practice lawyer. But as home prices dipped and he was elected to the Senate, Lee found himself underwater in the home and without the means to pay off the difference.

The home eventually sold for around $720,000, according to Utah County records, after J.P. Morgan Chase agreed to write off the loss in the value and Lee forfeited his “significant” down payment.

“It certainly is something that is painful to go through and I know a lot of people are going through it, and I feel for those who have had to go through it,” Lee said Thursday in response to questions from The Salt Lake Tribune.

“It’s not fun. It’s not something any of us would have chosen. But you do what you have to do when income doesn’t match your outlays. You have to pare your outlays down.”

Lee’s wife and three children are now living in a rental home in Alpine, he said, and will continue to do so for some time.

The state’s newest senator ended up in a “short sale” — in which a mortgage holder and bank agree to take a monetary hit to sell the home — after Lee was elected to the Senate and left his law firm, Howrey L.L.P.

Lee said he knew he had to sell his home if elected because he went from a salary of several hundred thousand dollars a year to the Senate payroll of $174,500.

2 Responses to Mike Lee, citizen senator

  1. edward on May 19, 2012 at 12:21 pm

    he should have asked the One and the Mayor of Chicago how do get around those pesky real estate laws….

  2. MikeN on May 19, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    1.1 million dollar home, figure 200-300k down payment, and about 60,000 paid off by the time he’s elected. He could have afforded it.