Rose is indeed a sympathetic person. When we met her at our Office recently she told of her mortgage woes, and her treatment at the hands of Bank of America, her loan servicer. She has been struggling to get her monthly mortgage payment reduced for over a year to no avail. Incredibly, her payment is over $1,000 per month, while her gross monthly income is only $1400! In other words, there is no money left over for her to provide even for her basic
sustenance after she pays her utility bills. And with a modest mortgage of $75,000, it isn’t as though Rose is a spendthrift. We quickly determined that Rose is yet another “False HAMP Denial Victim” By that what we mean is that she in fact qualifies for mortgage relief under the federal law known as the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), but was not offered the opportunity to qualify for that relief in any meaningful way.
Instead, what Bank of America did, as we see so often from all the loan servicers, was to have her complete financial forms as part of the HAMP application process, time and time again, without any real intention of allowing her to qualify for HAMP relief. In other words, BOA was violating federal law. In this respect, Rose joins the ranks of at least half the people seeking mortgage help who we talk to. They, like Rose, are False HAMP Denial victims as well. The problem is they don’t realize they are even being victimized, as they are putting their trust in their bank to treat them fairly and legally. Big mistake! Keep in mind, foreclosure is profitable for these banks. Therefore, granting HAMP mortgage relief is against their financial interest. This fact was proven in a case against BOA about a year ago wherein five of its former employees testified that they actually were paid bonuses for denying homeowners HAMP relief.
In Rose’s case, the servicing of her loan was recently transferred to an outfit called Select Portfolio Servicing (SPS). With regard to SPS, it is bound by the same HAMP requirements as was BOA before it. There is no doubt that Rose will get the HAMP relief she is entitled to under the law. The only question is how quickly we will be able to convince SPS that it has to play by the rules and grant that relief to Rose, or otherwise face serious consequences if it refuses. The end result for Rose will be nothing short of stunning. When all is said and done her monthly mortgage payment will be reduced by 2/3, from over $1,000, to $330. That’s what you call real mortgage relief! It is mind-boggling to consider that there are millions of homeowners across the Country being victimized in the same manner as Rose. Fortunately for Rose, she will not lose her home as so many others will. If you have serious mortgage issues, don’t wait, seek help immediately. It may very well make the difference between saving and losing your home.
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Kate Eyster and Lauren McGookey contributed to this article.
Copyright 2014 Daniel L. McGookey