99 Homes, the latest film by Ramin Bahrani, is a captivating examination of the personal devastation of the lives of homeowners during the economic recession of 2008. Even the hardest of workers could not escape eviction from their homes as properties were turned over to the banks. “How did this happen?” many asked themselves as they lost their jobs, income, and spirit. The reason this large-scale event overtook the nation was due to a combination of factors. The extending of credit to sub prime consumers who took advantage of relaxed lending conditions. Greed of unscrupulous lenders creating poorly composed loan and mortgage agreements that left the homeowner unprotected. And Big Banks who bet on these sub prime mortgages.
Although somewhat melodramatic in its storytelling, Bahrani’s film does touch on the most significant aspect of the recession—that of the human condition. While the U.S. was consumed with capital gain and status, it lost sight of the victims. 99 Homes poetically depicts the foreclosures of homes that were once inhabited by people from all walks of life, all of them now left without a home and with few prospects. This reminder of a tumultuous time in the U.S. serves as a harsh warning to the financial industry that history not repeat itself.
The film is an excellent reminder for those that work in the mortgage industry that we are dealing with people, not just names and numbers on documents. There is a reason why MMCD didn’t falter when the economy did back in 2008. We have always focused on our clients’ needs, which is why we do things precisely by the book when it comes to our mortgage agreements. No loopholes, no added stipulations—just borrowers achieving the dream of homeownership. 99 Homes comes as at a perfect time to remind us that our clients are the reason why we love to do what we do.