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Florida business owners file for Chapter 7

A Florida couple that owns a blind and shade business has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy claiming $2.125 million in debts and just $788,383 in assets. And, even though the filing is in their name, most of the debts are reportedly business related.

According to court records, the owners of M&M Wallcoverings & Blinds found themselves in financial troubles after 2004 when the two took out a loan for $963,294 to purchase a 48-foot Viking yacht. However, the two ended up defaulting on the loan, and Provident Bank sold off the yacht for $508,000 as collateral.

However, the couple claims that the bank had rejected a previous offer from them for $600,000, which would have been more than what the bank even sold for. So, when the bank attempted to sue the couple to pay the difference between the loan and what was still owed after the sale of the yacht, the couple ended up countersuing.

Now, almost a year later the couple has decided to also file for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy. According to their filing, the two spend more than they actually earn with their monthly income listed at $8,525 a month, but on average they spend $9,118 a month.

When looking at what could have possibly happened to put this Florida couple into debt, sources point to the fact that the two are in the business of selling shades and blinds, which could be looked at as being related to the downed housing market.

In general, when people are buying a new house, they are more apt to also purchase new home furnishings. However, with the housing market still down, many businesses in the housing-related industry are also feeling the financial pinch.

And, in addition to their business being tied to housing, there is also the fact those who were impacted during the recession are still not making as many unnecessary purchases as they used to, which is also effecting many local businesses.

Source: Sarasota Herald-Tribune, "Business Buzz Sarasota retailers file for Chapter 7," Michael Braga, 18 July 2011

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