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Moderator, I think the list of reasons that the servicer does not have to respond is open for abuse and continual stalling. Most information that consumers ask for or need are just a few keystrokes away for the servicer, but they make it difficult if not impossible for consumers to access that information. I hope the new rules will bring relief to homeowners, but right now the servicers have no real obligations or duties to the homeowners. The entire mortgage servicing system is flawed from the start.
When you state ALL borrowers, it truly should be ALL borrowers. My case is not unlike many thousands of homeowners across the Country, but I’ll bet many have not even heard of this situation. If a homeowner files for bankruptcy but keeps the home and continues to pay on time, don’t you think the deserve to receive statements? Some servicers are now cutting off ALL contact with persons with past bankrutcies, no statements, no web access, no infomation on how much was paid in interest so the homeowner can’t file income taxes etc etc etc… think about how you would deal with a complete and udder blackout of information on your loan? This is happening right now to homeowners everywhere. I think bankruptcy should not be used as an excuse to abuse homeowners who have already… more »
Coupon books should only be for borrowers who request them, at their own peril I might add. If a small servicer wants to only provide coupon books, then they should at least OFFER online access as well so the borrower can track when payments were posted and if any fees are being tacked on. Personally I think coupn books are an outdated tool for the mortgage servicing industry. Why would anyone TRUST a servicer after all of this?!?!
Thank you for giving me a voice and sharing. Let me first give you some background so you can fully understand what has happened. My partner developed cancer without medical insurance. This catastrophic event eventually led me into bankruptcy. My partner died 3 weeks before I recieved the Chapter 7 discharge. Three weeks AFTER the discharge, I signed permanent HAMP modification documents that lowered the payment on my house. Even though it is well over $100,000 underwater, it is still my home and I want to keep it. My servicer honored the permanent agreement and I paid my mortgage every month for over a year with no issues. My servicer provided online access as well as monthly statements. the monthly statements have a disclaimer at the bottom that read: “Aurora Bank is a debt collector.… more »
I don’t know, maybe. I just think a coupon book is not realistic in the year 2012. My opinion. But if you give servicers the option to issue coupon books, how many borrowers would suddenly get this once a year book they didn’t want nor were expecting? I guess you just need to think about whether a servicer would abuse the rule. What I can tell you is, not all servicers are bad, my last once was very nice to me. But some are up to no good, and are unapologetic about it. So think about the worst case scenario and word your rules carefully.
First, I don’t think it is appropriate to call people names, and your disrespect of the President is in poor taste. Now, as a servicer you are directly involved with the business side of what has happened. Many of your counterparts have, and continue to engage in outrageous behaviors that have affected millions of homeowners. The mortgage service industry has been engaging in acts from predatory to outright fraud. You might be small bank, but your bretheren are to blame for bringing shame to your industry. It is not a “few” cases here and there, it is systematic. So go yell at the servicers who turned your industry into the most untrusted “service” this Nation has ever seen. The public DOES NOT TRUST YOU ANYMORE. The Government has to step in because your industry… more »
The old servicer should be required to send any payments recieved during the 60 day period directly to the new servicer without any penalty or late charge. If the old servicer is given the option of sending it back to the borrower, the borrower will most likely now incur a late charge with the new servicer. The “send it back to the borrower” should not be an option and should be stricken. Also the the wording “mistakenly or accidently” sent to the old servicer should be revised as well. The borrower should be able to pay the old servicer during the 60 day period without fear. What if there is a dispute or issue with the new servicer at the time of transfer? I have such issue with a new servicer, who refuses to send any information about the loan. I guess I must blindly… more »
I have to disagree with this thoery. Real Estate is very much local, and everyone needs housing. Your proposal does not take into account that the average single home in San Francisco is valued well over $300,000. So is NYC, Honolulu, LA, San Diego… I don’t know where you live, and perhaps a $300,000 home in your area is a benchmark for the well to do. But $300,000 is not even a starter home in some areas. Why punish the average citizen of those cities just because of where they live? Great plan for those in Ohio, not so great for those in California.
So you resort to calling names when someone disagrees with you? For the record I am not in the real estate business, I’m in the military. So your rant is without merit. And the median home in your area of CO (80231) is only $192,000, how convenient of you to suggest imposing rules on others that would not affect you. I will not resort to calling you names, your actions say it all for you.
It looks like you want a debate, but I’m not interested. Try a debate team or something.
Thank you for giving me a voice during this difficult time. I realize the “effective comments” should be structured in a clinical fashion, but I am not cut from that kind of cloth so please bear with me. Much of my story can be found in the Periodic Statements comments, it’s quite lengthy but a true story none the less. After reading those comments you will see that forcing borrowers to immediately pay the new servicer can have unexpected consequences if the new servicer is not cooperating with the borrower. My old servicer did an excellent job of providing monthly statements as well as online access. The new servicer refuses to provide any loan information at all to me, not even what the payment is suppossed to be. During this 60 day window I have paid the old servicer twice,… more »
I wrote a QWR to my new servicer. It took three weekes for them to send an aknowledgement letter back. I’m not a trial lawyer, just a consumer with very limited resources. The QWR was perhaps the only tool available to consumers to get information, eliminating it seems counterintuitive of what consumer protection is all about. Where did CFPB get the data that “it is often trial lawyers, rather than ordinary consumers” who submit QWR’s? I would be skeptical if that claim comes from the servicers. My QWR asked for a lot of information because the new servicer won’t give me anything. CFPB needs to understand that some servicers will take advantage of whatever rules you impose, and if you want to protect the consumer you need to strengthen their rights, not weaken them.
Yes I do think the timeframes are more realistic. Easier? Not really. The servicer can still invoke any number of vague claims that thwart the borrower from getting information. I think the extensive list of reasons why a servicer does not have to answer will be used repeatedly. “Not in the normal course of business” can be invoked on every request, delaying an answer on the first try every time. The servicers can and will use any weapon that the CFPB hands them. I am not a lawyer, but I see huge holes in these rules. There’s too much emphasis on making sure the servicers are accomodated, at the expense of the borrower. Calling a servicer does not mean you will get an honest answer. The assumption is the servicer is honest so the rules are proposed this way. Taking away the… more »
Bravo Steve Bravo!!! You spell it it very well. There are servicers whose conduct is reprehensible, nothing short of a lawsuit will bring any form of accountability. The rules and regulations protection consumers are already weak, and the proposed changes weaken the consumers position further in many ways. Servicers are not above lying, they do it every day. I guess the rulemakers can no seem to grasp what is really going on, but your story of being directed to a defunct loan originator is another example of their deceptive practices. None of the rules will fix that though…
To show you what is really happening, please got to:
This shows you how rotten this servicer really is. Maybe the moderators can look at this and see where the borrowers are coming from rather than focusing on the “impact” to the servicers. Nationstar is as corrupt as thet come, and these rules do nothing to give the borrowers real power to fight back.
Eureka! I have found the smoking gun! The servicer cites bankruptcy as a reason to cut off contact and not provide online access or statements. However, the bankruptcy code, specifically 11 USC § 524 – EFFECT OF DISCHARGE, in fact does allow periodic payments when “the creditor retains a security interest in the real property that is the principal residence of the debtor”. So allowing periodic payments means allowing periodic statements to the debtor.
11 USC § 524 – EFFECT OF DISCHARGE
(a)A discharge in a case under this title—
(1)voids any judgment at any time obtained, to the extent that such judgment is a determination of the personal liability of the debtor with respect to any debt discharged under section 727, 944, 1141, 1228, or 1328 of this title,… more »
(j)Subsection (a)(2) does not operate as an injunction against an act by a creditor that is the holder of a secured claim, if—
(1)such creditor retains a security interest in real property that is the principal residence of the debtor;
(2)such act is in the ordinary course of business between the creditor and the debtor; and
(3)such act is limited to seeking or obtaining periodic payments associated with a valid security interest in lieu of pursuit of in rem relief to enforce the lien.
(j) Subsections (1)(2) and (3) make it clear that the creditor can provide periodic statements as a normal course of business when they hold a security interest in the real property. With this in mind, CFPB should cite in the rules that ALL borrowers with discharged bankruptcies are entitled to periodic statements persuant of this section of the bankruptcy code. Presently my servicer is refusing statements based on my past bankruptcy, but the policy is unfouded as the law does not bar them from providing the statements. This explains why my previous servicer had no problem providing statements and online access after the discharge. I’m sure Nationstar already knows this, but the claim that they are following bankruptcy law is apparently false! « less
Moderator. The servicer stated over the phone that it was their policy to deny online access and not provide statements to anyone with a bankruptcy discharge unless the loan is reaffirmed. I just recieved a response to my direct complaint to the servicer. They state in writing “Please be advised that our records indicate that your account has gone through a bankruptcy that has been discharged. Please know that because of the discharge bankrptcy we will no longer send billing statements unless we receive an affirmation agreement. If you have any questions please contact our bankruptcy department” As you can see they are trying to use the statements as leverage to obtain a reaffirmation. I’d go so far as to call it blackmail. They IMPLY that it is because of bankruptcy laws,… more »
I think tasheh has experienced a common problem with coupon books and Marcy has not. Let Marcy request a coupon book, but do not give the servicers the first option to provide. ALL borrowers should recieve periodic statements, and online access if available. The fixed rate exception should be stricken. I think the servicers have been overcharging and sliding in fees for years, it’s quite profitable to take money when the borrower just blindly pays with out question. Perhaps the pushback from the servicers is because it will be lost revenue many consumers never even knew they were paying. If the servicers are allowed to provide coupon books, they will give them to borrowers who do not want them. It is easy for them to rip off people who are not able to see the real numbers every month.… more »
Thank you! It does make sense to provide statements (and online access!) to discharged borrowers who continue to pay the mortgage. I agree that some may no longer want statements, perhaps because they are walking away. But those who filed bankruptcy in order to save thier homes should be allowed to request and receive statements and online access to properly manage the accout.
Steve you have posted an excellent example of how people continue to get the run around. One of the reasons the servicers/debt collectors seem to not care is because really they are not obligated to the borrower. The servicer has a contract and a fiduciary duty to the INVESTOR. The borrower is an account the servicer manages on the behalf of the INVESTOR. So “customer service” really is a misnomer, they do not view us as customers. They view us as accounts. The servicer does not have a fiduciary duty to the borrower, so they really do not care about anything except the revenue the account (you) provide. The caveat is that the INVESTOR wants the account to keep paying, but the system is designed to bring more revenue to the servicer if the borrower is late or in default. Can you… more »
UPDATE: After submitting a formal complaint through CFPB, the servicer has partially relented. The “apology” was veiled and sarcastic, I’m not surprised. They agreed to allow online access, but still refuse to provide periodic statements “to preserve certain debt collection rights”. The case also is not closed as they continue to “investigate”. I have to ask, why are they spending so much time, effort and resources to withhold information that the previous servicer readily provided? Also the online information is very rudimentary, not detailed enough to show year-to-date details. The statement area is blocked. This means the HAMP incentive accrual and disbursement is not shown and can not be tracked. Are they planning on keeping the HAMP incentives?… more »
I disagree with the “send it back to the borrower” idea. This does not make sense and does not benefit the borrower. This will only incur late fees to the benefit of the servicers. The borrower should be able to send payments to the old servicer up to 60 days after the transfer date without fear that the payment will not be applied. The borrower should only be concerned with making the payment on time. The old and new servicer are already in a contractual agreement, so tranferring the payment from the old servicer to the new servicer is a simple electronic transaction. It is applied on the same day the old servicer recieves the payment from the borrower. So this talk about sending payments back to the borrower is detrimental to the borrower, this is against the entire purpose of… more »
I agree with peekaboo that servicers large and small provide poor service, and so the size may not be the deciding factor on quality of servicing. But since there is not fiduciary duty between the borrower and the servicer, the quality of service to the borrower is simply “voluntary” at best. The servicers have a duty to the Investor, and do not work for the borrower. So really there should be no exemtions at all, unless a fiduciary duty is imposed there will always be bad behavior and trickey to the detriment of the borrower. Small servicers may (or may not) have a better relationship with the borrowers, but it is not by obligation.
Hi hotblazer. Could you clarify which items on the list you are concerned about? Or are you saying that you feel the servicer should have to respond to every request, including requests for information that it doesn’t have? Do you think that requiring the servicer to tell the borrower within five days if it thinks it does not have to respond to a request and to explain why will help prevent a servicer from stalling?
Welcome to Regulation Room, hotblazer. Under CFPB’s proposal, a servicer would have to provide changing information such as transaction activity and payment breakdowns (including fees) upon request. A servicer could provide that information orally, in writing, or electronically. Does this solve some of the problems inherent in using coupon books?
Thank you for sharing your experience, hotblazer. CFPB is particularly interested in the interaction between the proposed rules and other laws, like bankruptcy. Right now, the proposed rule applies to all outstanding consumer mortgages, and so the requirement to provide periodic statements should continue unless it’s blocked by some other law. Are you saying that the servicer stopped providing the information because of the automatic stay (or some other part of the bankruptcy code)? Or do you think there is some other reason the servicer stopped providing the information?
Your misrepresentation in your signature line is amazingly bold. Clearly you are not researching you are a real estate industry stooge intent on confusing regulators.
You confuse valuations (recent sales price) with economic value. You equate equate lack of government subsidy a punishment.
In the plan proposed if Californians made more or had less other expenses such as transportation then there would be a greater house price to subsidize. However that is not the case in a bubble economy and a real estate market that confuses recent sals prices with economic value.
Labeling one as a stooge or a dupe is not calling names. It is assessing the level of the comment. You are ignoring the point and throwing out a non-starter as a means to win a debate. It is your arguments that are as berift of substance as the Atacama desert is berift of water. Why is it that you believe all Americans regardless of economic stature and bubble economy position are entitled to the same government subsidies? Answer that with a reasonable degree of clarity and persuasive arguement then you will have others listen to you.
hotblazer, you seem to have some experience that might be valuable for CFPB to know about. If you want, you can share more details about what you have gone through with your servicer. You might also want to check out the post on Asking For, and Getting, Information.
Thanks for your comment, hotblazer. CFPB explains its statement about lawyers submitting QWRs more often than consumers here. However, CFPB wants to change this and make it easier for consumers to get information from the servicer themselves without outside help. Do you think the timeframe rules in Section 1 of this issue above would make it easier for consumers like you to get the information they need from servicers?
Thanks hotblazer. Not only do they claim that they have no affiliation with the originator and that they only purchased the servicing rights. After the borrower from frustration gives up and enters into default the servicer just calls themselves a debt collector. Has the CFPB considered these rules in connection to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act since the servicer is now calling itself a debt collector?
steve smith, you raise an important question – the extent to which the new rules relate to or conflict with other, existing laws like the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. CFPB is seeking comment on just that question – in particular, on whether servicers will have difficulty meeting the requirements of this rule as well as the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Do you anticipate any conflict? Or do you think the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act can provide added protection for borrowers?
hotblazer, perhaps if you could share with us exactly what phrasing your servicer is using, it would shed some light on the issue. Does your servicer say they would be violating the bankruptcy code by sending you periodic statements? That sending statements to borrowers violates their bank’s internal policies? Some mix of the two, or something a bit different?
Thanks, hotblazer, for the additional detail. It sounds like the servicer has a policy against sending billing statements to borrowers who have gone through bankruptcy since, strictly speaking, they’re no longer “borrowers” on the loans that have been discharged. In fact, some people may not want to get statements after their mortgage is discharged. But others, like in your case, may want to continue receiving statements in order to continue making payments. So perhaps it makes sense to require servicers to provide statements to discharged borrowers who continue to make payments, but only upon the borrower’s specific request. What do you think? And what do others think about the issue hotblazer has raised?
Hi hotblazer, thanks for your comments. CFPB has focused on how difficult it can be for borrowers to get information from some servicers. It wants to help simplify the information request process so that borrowers can get the information they need. They have done this by proposing rules that define the types of information servicers must provide (as well as the types that servicers don’t need to respond to) and placing time limits on when servicers must respond. Should the list of required information be expanded or the list of exceptions narrowed? (CFPB is trying to balance the requirements and the exceptions so that borrowers get the information they need, but servicers are not overwhelmed with information requests.) Are there other things CFPB should consider in order to make the information that borrowers need more easily available?
Do others agree that adding escrow account details would be useful to most borrowers, rather than overwhelming them?
Just like with banking statements, a borrower should have the option to opt in for paperless. If they do, everything can be handled via the web, and email/text notifications can be sent. These notifications should contain the exact same information as the paper statement. They would just be received earlier since there’s no physical mail involved. Again, since everything can be done electronically, there needs to be a way for borrowers to view/update their insurance information electronically through the loan servicer, without having to go to Assurant/QBE’s highly deceptive websites.
If a borrower doesn’t want electronic access, that is their choice. Servicers such as Wells Fargo, Bank of America, & JPMorgan already have websites set up. Adding mortgage/insurance information should not be difficult and should already have been done.
The answers to my QWR were quite surprising. The servicer might argue they have too high of costs and burden to reply and that some are “overly broad”. However, the servicer had no problem providing me pages and pages of payoff statement and payment history – they actually send these information several times for some strange reason. However, even after they wrote me that they checked the reinstatement fees and confirmed those as “correct” they cannot itemize even half of them. That would take one or two pages to print out and mail – much easier than the information they were willing to provide. That request was “too broad”. So yes, the servicer can call too broad what ever they want to. I will now write a new QWR asking again for itemization… more »
The CFPB’s only role is to protect the consumer. They should not even have to worry about making it easier for or less costly for the servicer or the bank. My servicer chose to spend money on hiring a high profile law firm only to (not) answer my QWR entirely. Well – that is their choice.
Yes, all loan origination documentation, loan servicing history, customer contact history, etc should be transferred. If I were to transfer from 1 school to another or 1 primary care provider to another, all of my records are transferred along with me. With servicing transfers, this is often not done.
Also the new servicer should be given a specific deadline to have all of the missing customer information boarded into their systems. As this is often done en masse and electronically, it should take no more than 5 days, but let’s say 15 days just to be nice.
Also, the burden of filling in this missing information should be on the loan servicer, NOT the borrower. I don’t see any reason why if my bank decides to sell my portfolio, it’s suddenly my problem to resubmit information… more »
As an advocate for homeowners in foreclosure, I am on the phone with servicers large and small every day. while foreclosure education is always needed, I think a more pressing issue is regulation of servicers who misrepresent their own investors and who decieve borrowers for their own financial gain. In several of our firms’ cases major servicers have claimed they could not offer a loan modification to our our clients’ because there was an “investor restriction.” This would be valid if it were true, as investors are not required to to consent to a modification. However, oftentimes this is just an excuse the servicers use to keep a client in default and to keep raking in fees that benefit themselves (investor’s usually recieve principle and interest, while servicers… more »
In this age of the Internet, I think there should be a rule requiring mortgage servicing companies to provide access to loan information online. I currently have a mortgage from a company who does not offer this. Since I often deal with financial matters at home after normal working hours, I much prefer having online access instead of having to make a phone call to get the information.
What many people don’t realize is that ALL customer service representatives (even those for 3rd party vendors such as Assurant & QBE First) have AT LEAST read-only access to all borrower information. In the case of a system like FIS/LPS, if a customer calls in asking for a complete history of their loan, it would take a a customer service rep a maximum of 1 minute (assuming the loan is very old and the rep is very new) for a representative to screenshot the SER_ screen subsets (Services Performed), including SERN (C/S Notes), the HAZ_ screen subsets (Hazard Insurance), ORI_ (Loan Origination), or FOR_(Foreclosure), etc. For example, if you call in asking for Foreclosure information, they can fax/email you a screenshot of the FOR1 and FOR3 screens along with a quick breakdown of what… more »
Who owns the mortgage is simple…INV_ is the investor screen subset which shows all historic investors on the loan, and the current investor is listed on every _ _ _ 1 screen (such as SER1, HAZ1, etc). If original copies of loan closing documentation is needed, in a worst case scenario, it takes 5 business days to order from Iron Mountain. In most cases, it takes 1 minute to retrieve from the loan servicer’s loan documentation imaging database. « less
Moderator, the answer is both and they should be one in the same.:-) It is easier to trace a relative that dies a 100 years ago on ancestry.com then it is to trace a $500,00 current note and mortgage. (lack of linked cutting edge computer software is the difference). It is even easie to trace a $1.00 used item sold on Ebay after the sale then a current note and mortgage. I felt like pulling my hair out trying to put together a chain of title with my note and mortgage. If an investigator went into US customs they could pull up, on the computer, any container arriving in the USA, where it came from, where it went and what was in it. Because US customes has current standard technology and an amazing detailed code system that could be adapted for banking. If you want to see the extent of their… more »
I am not tech savvy, but coupon books have static information and too little information. I would wish that all lenders were trustworthy; but they all are not. Prior to my requesting a payment history, I made payments religiously, in good faith, believing that the lender was so. Now I think differently because almost $4000 of the payments I made is unaccounted for and I do not know how to hold the institution accountable. They have been giving me the runaround for six months. Would anyone want to risk being in these shoes? Yet, with a coupon book and a trusting consumer, this is possible and probable. And, as I’ve said, being able to call and write to the lender/servicer requesting information is guarantee of nothing. I’ve been doing that since February – have even had intervention… more »
To maintain clear information that will prevent people from being “overwhelmed” with fraud would require the bank to give the home owner a choice of servicers at closing. Just like when you buy a computer you pick your service provider. For a servicer to change 4 times in a year, to create multiple annual forceplaced insurance policies, is abuse! Your servicing should not be traded like a stock because, well it’s stupid, leads to fraud and leads to people being “overwhelmed” for no reason. When you buy a car you decide who is going to send you your monthly bill. The banks have proven they are way too irresponsible to make this decision for homeowners. So I ask, why after 4 years, are banks still allowed to do this?
Why are you leaving it up to the servicer to determine if the information being requested is “unreasonable”? The CFPB is not listening to the “ordinary” people because this is the problem now, not the solution. The banks are probably being asked the same 20 or 30 questions over and over about loans. Please ask Versability for a list of the questions, in relation to a loan, that people ask that are currently not covered on the sample monthly statement that could easlily fit on the statement. Varsability that is emailing you, is trying everything to address transparency issues and has the answers you are looking for. Why don’t we separate reasonable questions from unreasonable questions. Ask Versability, how many of the questions could be answered on the monthly… more »