If the bank ever came knocking, the response is easy — and is increasingly attractive, even to policymakers: make the bank produce in court the actual paper documents signed at the mortgage closing. Not a scan, not a photocopy, but the actual page. (Some states, including Maine, have considered requiring production of this document before a foreclosure can continue.) After all, who's to say that a person knocking on your door with a photocopy of your mortgage owns anything other than just that — a photocopy of your mortgage? That can't be enough to prove you actually owe them actual money. So stand there in court and tell the judge that as soon as the bank proves it actually owns your house, you'll pay. But not until then. And wait for the banks to sort out the paperwork.

You'll live rent-free for years — or even own your home free and clear. Don't forget to pay the property taxes, though — the town can take your home if you get too far behind on them.

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