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Rep. Laura Richardson's Sacramento home listed for short sale

The Sacramento home of Rep. Laura Richardson (D-Long Beach) has been listed as a short sale months after Sacramento County documents indicated the congresswoman was behind on house payments by more than $42,000.

Richardson's real estate woes have been well-chronicled since Capitol Weekly broke the story of her Curtis Park home slipping into default in 2008. Richardson's home was seized by the bank and sold at auction, apparently without Richardson's knowledge. Richardson said she learned her house was sold only after reading the news reports.

In a highly unusual move, the foreclosure sale was later rescinded after a deal was reached with the auction buyer and Richardson's bank. Neither party would discuss the terms of the agreement. Documents from the Sacramento County recorder's office indicate Richardson's home slipped back into default in November 2009. Those documents indicate Richardson had fallen behind in payments by more than $42,000.

Richardson spokesman Jeff Billington said that notice was a "clerical error" and the house was not in default.

The house is now listed at $399,000, far below the $535,001 Richardson originally paid for the house. The house is listed as a short sale -- meaning the bank has agreed to let Richardson sell the home for less than what she owes on the property.

Richardson bought the three-bedroom, 1,639-square-foot house in January 2007 after she was elected to the Assembly. She spent only a few months in that office before winning an August 2007 special election to Congress. Richardson received a $535,000 loan from Washington Mutual for the property with no down payment. Richardson had three challengers in her June primary but still received two-thirds of the vote. She faces Republican challenger Star Parker, a young woman probably best known for a memoir she wrote about getting off of welfare and becoming a born-again Christian. Democrats have a 60% to 16% registration advantage in the 37th Congressional District. You can see the real estate listing for the house, complete with photos, here. Ricahrdson1
-- Anthony York in Sacramento

 
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