December 26, 2010

Not Your House? Not Our Lien? We’re Foreclosing Anyway, Sucks to be You.

So, now that another Christmas has come and gone, it’s time to take stock and count our blessings.  Here’s a blessing you didn’t know you had: Be thankful a bank isn’t foreclosing on you for a house you don’t even own.  Because if they were, good luck proving it isn’t yours.  Or maybe it is your house, but another bank who doesn’t even own the note is foreclosing despite your perfect payment record? Or even better yet, how about a bank foreclosing on your house when you paid cash for it?  Welcome to another episode of Bankers Do the Darndest Things! 

Thanks to Burbed reader nomadic for this cup of Christmas cheer!

Caught by mistake in foreclosure web

By MICHELLE CONLIN, AP Real Estate Writer Wed Dec 8, 6:28 pm ET

In this undated photo provided by Alexa Marconi, Christopher Marconi stands outside his home in Garrison, N. Y. On Oct. 20, 2010, Marconi was in the sChristopher Marconi (photo, right) was in the shower when he heard a loud banging on his door. By the time he grabbed a towel and hustled to his front step, a U.S. marshal’s sedan was peeling out of his driveway. Nailed to Marconi’s front door was a foreclosure summons from Wells Fargo, naming him as a defendant. But the notice was for a house Marconi had never seen — on a mortgage he never had.

Tom Williams was in his kitchen thumbing through the mail when he opened a letter from GMAC. It informed him that the bank would confiscate his house unless he immediately paid off his mortgage balance of $276,000. But Williams had never missed a mortgage payment. And his loan wasn’t due to mature until 2032.

Warren Nyerges opened his front door in Naples, Fla., to find a scraggly-haired summons server standing on his stoop. He plopped a foreclosure notice from Bank of America in Nyerges’ hands. But Nyerges had paid for his house in cash. And he’d never had a checking account, much less a mortgage, with Bank of America.

By now, you may have heard the stories of bank robo-signers powering through hundreds of foreclosure affidavits a day without verifying a single fact. But most of those involved homeowners who had stopped paying their mortgage. They were genuine defaulters. Now a new species of homeowner is getting pushed into foreclosure hell.

Main ImageSeveral US Senators noted problems reported to them of people doing everything right and getting notices of default, with no way to reverse the foreclosure express without hiring lawyers.

One woman in the article said Bank of America not only picked through her personal property but cut off her utilities, poured antifreeze down her drains, padlocked her doors and confiscated her pet parrot.  Angela Iannelli said it took her 6 weeks to get B of A to clean her house.  She was current on her loan payments.

Jose and Maria Perez  of Seguin, Texas are suing B of A for scheduling their house for a foreclosure sale, despite the fact that their loan is current, with a different bank.  Former employees at banks have testified they knowingly foreclosed on the wrong people, or masqueraded as bank VPs when they had no experience whatsoever… because bank officials told them to do so.

So why is this happening?  Is it just sloppiness, or, as this AP article suggests, is it because the banks have a financial incentive to foreclose and then slap on a bunch of fees, which are the first debts paid when the house is sold?  Ya think?  Does a banker charge interest?

There’s plenty more, so get out your boxing gloves, head down to the boxing ring, find the nearest banker and enjoy Boxing Day.

Comments (11) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:08 am

11 Responses to “Not Your House? Not Our Lien? We’re Foreclosing Anyway, Sucks to be You.”

  1. CB Says:

    These things happen in life, related to housing or not. You just have to be vigilant in defending yourself, pick your battles and when an opportunity to get one over on a bank/government agency/careless bureaucracy arises, take it.

  2. Tuno Says:

    On the bright side, I can’t picture juries siding with the banksters in these cases.

  3. nomadic Says:

    Aww, those poor bankers. They finally get around to foreclosing on people and they can’t even get the address right. May the taxpayers could give them a few more billion to straighten out their paperwork.

  4. madhaus Says:

    What about all the people who couldn’t afford to hire a lawyer in the first place and lost their homes, their credit scores, their reputations? What really bugged me about the article was the implication the banks did it on purpose to get the foreclosure fees.

  5. SEA Says:

    The days of collecting foreclosure fees are coming to an end. When property values were rising sufficiently fast enough, then one could collect foreclosure fees, since the proceeds from the foreclosure often covered the loan balance plus all fees and expenses.

    Yes, one of the advantages of living in the RBA is that the lender can still recover the foreclosure fees.

    Moving forward, how about the loan service companies that delay posting payments until after late fees are due. A friend was so upset about the claims of receiving the payment late, you know, supposedly the USPS always delivered the mail late, that he started sending his payments certified. So he had a signature and date of delivery, yet his payment wasn’t posted for a few days. According to his loan servicer, more late were fees due and owing.

    Now that the situation is outlined, I bet you know the routine. He calls up and the person on the other end says, “Your payment was received late.” He replies, “But you signed for it and didn’t post it for a few days.”

    “Our records show your payment was received late.”

    So he writes letters, more phone calls, yet the late fees are still due and owing according to the loan servicer.

    What should he do?

  6. CB Says:

    What should he do?

    Use online banking, copy all correspondence to his house representative and threaten to file a case with the county District Attorney’s consumer protection unit.

  7. nomadic Says:

    What should he do?

    Mail the payment by the first of the month. Normally you have until the 10th before late fees kick in.

    Or he could sign up for automatic payments directly with the lender; most of them offer the service.

  8. CB Says:

    I’d hold back on allowing a servicer access to your accounts by automatic payment. If you’re going to go that route set it up through your bank. Otherwise if you were forced to default, who’s to say these fkrs, armed with your checking acount number and routing information won’t empty your account for fun then ask questions later?

  9. Tuno Says:

    SEA, have your friend spend a couple hundred bucks to consult with an attorney who handles these sorts of situations. It will be worth it to him to find out his options. There is no way he can figure them out on his own, via websites and and books and articles. If it turns out not to be cost effective for him to hire a lawyer (to sue the scum), the lawyer can set him on the right path for dealing with it himself. He really needs an overview from a specialist.

  10. Tuno Says:

    In addition to consulting a lawyer, of course he needs to document every interaction with the scumballs, and also send letters of complaint to the attorney general, his political representatives, the local consumer fraud folks, and whoever regulates the loan servicing company.

    Has he checked online to see if other people are complaining about the same company? And what approach they’re taking?

  11. Tuno Says:

    I agree with CB; I wouldn’t give them access to my checking account; not a chance.

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