Why Fannie Mae Would Rather Foreclose On My Condo Than Let Me Refinance

By bills, condo, drama, financial wisdom, hazards to my well-being, mortgage, not ruling at life, top notch communication blunders, you might learn something 2 Comments

Okay. I’m seriously over this crap with the mortgage. If you don’t know the story by now — let me get you caught up: Bought the place in 2006 with a friend. She moved out and got married. We’ve been renting out her room. Interest rate is ridiculous because we financed 100 percent. I’m trying to refinance the condo into my name only because she wants out. We’re underwater, and we have private mortgage insurance (PMI) on our current loan. Mortgage company encouraged me to apply for a short refinance. Did everything they said (even though more than half of what they said was completely screwy). Argued with them for five months before they gave me a final response. This is what happens next.

They said no. Want to hear why? Because we’re current on the loan. No late payments. But here’s the best part. LBPS wants to file a claim with the mortgage insurance company, and they won’t submit my short refinance request to Fannie Mae for review until the PMI company agrees to pay the claim. And the mortgage insurance company has a strict policy that they don’t pay claims on any accounts that are less than 60 days past due. And LBPS has been aware of that policy since January 2010, but they still encouraged me to pursue this option.

Guess what else. If we fall 60 days past due on our account, I’m pretty sure I’m not going to be securing any decent financing on this condo. Basically, I’d be better off whacking myself in the face over and over with a frying pan than even bothering with these idiots anymore.

I decided enough was enough. I went over LBPS’ head and spoke with Fannie Mae directly. Want to know what they said? Want to know what Fannie Mae (who received $200 billion in bailout money) said to me? Wait. Let me tell you what I said to them first.

I said, “Here’s the deal. I want to give you all your money. I want to pay you. I understand that my condo was a bad investment, and I’m willing to cough up the cash. But I need to refinance. My co-borrower is going to end up filing for bankruptcy if I don’t. I’ve secured financing for 97.5 percent of the current value of my condo at a super-low interest rate, and I’m willing to sign a promissory note to pay the rest of it back to you over the next few years. But LBPS won’t send my documents to Fannie Mae for review because the PMI company won’t pay on the claim. Isn’t there anyone I can negotiate this with? I’m willing to pay you, so you won’t have to put in a claim!”

They said, “No ma’am. You cannot negotiate with us. You must go through your servicer, LBPS. We are not participating in the short refinance program. We do not forgive principal on loans with PMI because if we let the home go into foreclosure, we would collect on the insurance claim.”

Fannie Mae pretty much just told me that they’d rather let my condo go into foreclosure than work out a deal to let me repay them their freaking money. This is a joke, right?

I’m also pretty sure the exact words,”Then I guess you have no more options, ma’am,” came out of this woman’s mouth after I explained to her all the different ways I’ve attempted to rectify this situation since December 2008.

Keep trying to back me into a corner, Fannie. No wonder people walk away from their homes. The average American doesn’t possess the patience and/or mental capacity to navigate their way through this bullshit, but I’m dead set on refinancing this piece of property without screwing up my perfect credit score. It would be nice if you would help me out, but I’ll keep fighting you on it if you won’t. Got it?

This crazy trip has got me feelin’: irate
And I’m singin’ along to: F*ck You – Cee Lo Green

Let me get this straight.

By bills, condo, drama, financial wisdom, hazards to my well-being, mortgage, not ruling at life, posts in the form of letters, top notch communication blunders 3 Comments

Dear mortgage company,

The last time I spoke with you regarding my loan, you finally offered up the first viable suggestion I have heard in years that will actually solve all of my problems. It will get my co-borrower off the loan, lower my interest rate, and even lower the principal of my loan so that I won’t be upside down in my condo anymore. So, I found a lender willing to find a program for me, and she did! Amazing! All this time I’ve been asking if I could short-sell to myself, I was actually on to something! I’m a freaking genius!

However, when I called back this evening (and sat on hold for close to two hours), your customer service representative said she had never heard of such a thing. And then she said she didn’t know what I was talking about and that chances are I wouldn’t get approved for that anyway because I am current on my payments and haven’t ever made a late payment. Are you insinuating that I should default on my mortgage? Because I wouldn’t qualify for this FHA short-payoff refinance if I was late on my mortgage payments, you bumbling morons. You have no freaking idea what you’re talking about, do you?

What is that? You want me to send in my paperwork for a HAMP modification? AGAIN? Give me a freaking break. It’s hard for me to believe that when you took over servicing the loan from First Horizon, you didn’t receive ANY history on my account. I’ve been denied for that program six times. SIX TIMES, mortgage company. Did you catch that? Maybe you should write it down. Just like maybe you should write down my phone number, the fact that I do not have any other liens on the property, the name of my condo association and the amount of my monthly condo fees so that you won’t have to ask me, not only every time I call, but every flipping time you even transfer me to someone new.

And while we’re at it, let’s discuss one last thing. Seeing as that your parent company, IBM, is one of the most prominent computer companies out there, I’m insulted by the fact that you would lie to me and tell me that your representatives have neither e-mail addresses nor direct phone numbers or extensions. I understand that your mission as middle-man between the lender and the customer is basically to get us to stop calling and continue paying, but you’re living in a dream world. I’m going to make you miserable and call you six times a day until you get your shit together and figure out what an FHA short-payoff fucking refinance is. And the next time I call, you’d better not tell me you’ve never heard of one of those. Use our phone conversation you recorded for training purposes and train yourselves with it.

So, let me get this straight. You took over servicing a bunch of loans because you have the best automation software on the market to do it and keep your costs down; however you want me to believe you have no direct phone numbers, no e-mail addresses, and no clue about what FHA loan I’m talking about. You won’t approve me for a short sale or a short refinance until you’ve already denied me (again) for the HAMP program, but you can’t give me a straight answer about how long that will take.

You’re making me very angry, mortgage company. Very, very angry. I haven’t decided what to do about it yet, but I’m working on it, and I can’t wait until I don’t have to pay your dumb ass more than $900 a month in interest any more. No, maybe being upside down by a few thousand dollars doesn’t qualify as a hardship, and perhaps it’s my own fault for assuming that I’d be able to refinance in two years when I signed the papers on a loan with a nearly 7.5 percent interest rate, but I’ve been a really good sport up until now with this whole situation, and I’m freaking sick of it. Yay, I have a good credit score! F- my credit score. Money is more important to me than my credit score, and I’m getting out of this negative equity whether you like it or not.

You’re going to lose this argument or gain 1,010 square feet of carpet that needs to be replaced. I promise.

Your (perpetually on hold) customer

This crazy trip has got me feelin’: enraged
And I’m singin’ along to: You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet – Bachman-Turner Overdrive

Financial Views

By bills, breaking news, condo, drama, financial wisdom, mortgage, shopping One Comment

The government wants to spend $700 billion to bail out financial institutions that have acquired so much bad debt, they can’t recover. I’m no financial expert, but when I read sentence fragments like, “saddle the taxpayers with $700 billion to buy bad assets,” it makes me angry. I’ve been wondering, since it’s become socially acceptable to settle for foreclosure on your real estate, am I eligible for some sort of reward for being responsible and paying my mortgage every month? I mean not to sound spoiled or anything, but so many people have been defaulting on loans, I feel as though I deserve some sort of good citizen recognition or at least a thank you note from my mortgage company.

People need to be held accountable for their own financial decisions. Sure, we blame the banks for handing out subprime mortgages like Halloween candy, but shouldn’t we also blame the people who signed the paperwork and agreed to make the monthly payments on loans they couldn’t afford? How spoiled can people be? I don’t know about everyone else, but when I agreed to sign a stack of legal documents for the loan on my condo, I asked, “By the way, what’s the monthly payment on that? Is it going to change? What are my options when I decide to sell or refinance?” You can’t pay your debt? Stop incurring it! Get a second job. Walk dogs. Wait tables. Pay your damn mortgage.

Do you know why we’re in trouble now? It’s because everyone loves a crisis, and no one has the financial knowledge to figure out how the economy is affecting them directly. People are thinking, Hey! We have no clue what we’re talking about, but the country is in a financial crisis! I know because all the reliable news headlines that I glance at while I’m Googling something less important tell me so!  Let’s all panic and sell our stocks because we don’t know what else to do! Everyone wants to get involved and do something, but no one understands that they best thing to do is sit tight and calm the fuck down.

Investing in anything involves at least an inkling of commitment. Nothing is a guarantee. If you purchase a home or invest in a stock, and its value begins to decrease instead of increase, you can’t just run away. You suck it up, keep making your payments and wait for the market to turn around.

We really need some system for educating U.S. citizens about money and managing personal finances. I spent a total of 17 years in school, and it blows my mind that I learned about everything from Hamlet and calculus to copyright law and nutrition, but not once did a teacher or a professor or a guidance counselor sit down and show me how to balance a checkbook or create a personal budget, much less manage investments wisely.

Granted, there are exceptions. I understand that, and my frustration with our current economic situation is not because of smart people who take risks on businesses and investments. They’re the ones that have crafted some of the best businesses of all time, and sometimes they encounter difficulties they’re unable to recover from. Those are the businesses and people who government assistance is there to benefit –for emergencies! It’s not there because spoiled Joe Shmoe wanted to live outside his means and knowingly signed the paperwork on a five-year ARM that he couldn’t ever afford in the first place (and his mortgage broker knew it).

Seriously, people. Get a grip. You’re making our country look like a bunch of spoiled brats. And morons. Just use some common sense. If you don’t have the money to buy something…don’t buy it!