Suicide and the Housing Market

It’s hard to find a tale much sadder than this recent news from Los Angeles about a man who killed his wife, himself and their five beautiful children. Real estate woes loom prominently in the story.

According to the Daily Breeze, Ervin Lupoe and his wife bought their suburban Los Angeles home for $290,000 in 2003, borrowing the entire amount. They refinanced it twice during the boom, taking out a total of $630,000. Then, apparently to help pay for child care, Ervin lied about his income and forged documents, a move that cost both he and his wife what would likely have been stable jobs working at a local hospital.

Ervin, a former Marine, blamed the hospital for his actions in a suicide note faxed to a local TV station.