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I was lucky.  My family got mortgage relief and we kept our home after I lost my job in 2009.  Of course, we had to go through 8 months of applications and faxing our financial information and pleading and sucking up and ultimately filing bankruptcy to force Chase to add our outstanding payments to the backend of the mortgage (which reset back to 30 years), all to get a 2% mortgage which I could then afford when I was (luckily!) rehired for $10k less than what I had been making.

Ultimately Chase will not lose a fucking penny.  But still, I know people who tried to get their mortgages renegotiated and have some forgiveness to desperately keep their homes and their bank lost their paperwork, more than once, starting all over again in the process while fearing that any day they could be foreclosed.  I know people who were foreclosed.  I know people who abandoned their homes, so underwater it didn't make sense to stay.  So I feel fortunate that it worked out for me and my family.  We kept our roof.  We can afford our mortgage.  We're underwater but not hopelessly.  Lucky!

But apparently not as lucky as the people who don't need the luck at all.

I don't even know what to do with this information but I was so incensed when my sister-in-law told us that she got calls from her two banks (because she has two mortgages on two homes worth in the area of $1.8M together) asking if she'd like to redo her mortgages at lower rates.

That's right, the banks actually called and solicited my wealthy sister-in-law with a 4,000 square foot family home and a second million dollar "beach" house, who has not had the slightest problem paying her mortgage, in fact she pays extra every month to lower her principal!  THEY CALLED HER and solicited her to get a lower rate.  

She doesn't need it.  And I can't help thinking that those two banks (Citi and BofA) did not call some family that needs that help, that is struggling.  They called her, a wealthy person who does not.

Anybody else know of situations like this?  Is this a thing?  Is this a way for the banks to take the government money and pad their stats to say they're helping homeowers, but really they're helping their best, most well healed, customers who don't need the help, but are more likely to use the more high end wealth management services offered by the bank?

I'm outraged that we had to work so hard to get relief, some can't get it at all.  But this well off family got it when they didn't even ask for it.  Sick fucking shit.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (6+ / 0-)

    Poor man wanna be rich Rich man wanna be king And a King ain't satisfied Till he rules everything

    by jetfan on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 09:13:03 AM PDT

  •  Wow. (3+ / 0-)

    I'm going to guess it has something to do with the government requiring that they do a certain number of interest rate write downs, and they're going for the richest folks who they believe they won't have issue with. Problem solved, they're within their requirements, and they don't have to deal with the little people.

    "Mitt Romney looks like the CEO who fires you, then goes to the Country Club and laughs about it with his friends." ~ Thomas Roberts MSNBC

    by second gen on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 09:27:29 AM PDT

  •  I called my mortgage company (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cany, Renee, second gen, Actuary4Change

    and asked for help-they told me I need to b e in foreclosure before I qualify for certain write downs, but said they would send me HAMP info and have someone call me.  Neither thing happened.  I was told my medical condition  and its impact on my business, therefore income, could not be considered other than as part of the medical expenses portion of the form.  They still claim they sent it and someone called and left a message.  No paperwork, no call, no message.  Scammers.

    The thing about democracy, beloveds, is that it is not neat, orderly, or quiet. It requires a certain relish for confusion. Molly Ivins

    by MufsMom on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 09:41:38 AM PDT

  •  We were trying to refinance the home I am in to (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Renee, Actuary4Change

    a lower interest rate. We are NOT upside down, our payments are and always have been current, and we only owe in the neighborhood of $70K (this is CA, so that really isn't much here).

    BoA who ended up with our Countrywide loan now tells us they aren't doing these kinds of loans at the moment. Fuckers. We were trying to go with a 15 year that would have raised the payment to about $1068/month. the point of that, of course, was to get us to payoff quicker, and cheaper. We didn't want a reassessment for a lot of reasons (and because they hold the loan, they would not have done that... it was a paper loan only), and other institutions would have. The other reason is that the house is in the middle of a LONG time upgrade and is on a temp power pole.

    I am so pissed. No matter WHAT people do they are screwed. I am so sick of banks and their manipulation. And wouldn't you know we ended up in the worst of the worst.

    202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

    by cany on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 09:43:24 AM PDT

    •  you can't be surprised that BOA (0+ / 0-)

      didn't want to do a deal w/ you that resulted in them getting less money.

      •  Yes, I am surprised BECAUSE they started the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        deal, then decided they didn't want to do these. THAT is the only reason I am surprised.

        They are going to make LESS money when I pay it off early, so the joke will be on them.

        202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

        by cany on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 11:30:29 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  two things: (0+ / 0-)

    chase - or, rather, the ultimate investor - will lose money on you: they lose the higher future interest income.  depending on the accounting treatment, that could result in a loss on the fmv of the mortgage that they'd recognize immediately.

    second: if your sister is a valuable client or the bank has some sort of fiduciary duty (ie, if she has financial advisors there), then I could see them soliciting a refi.

    •  Well, the bank (0+ / 0-)

      has offered to lower the rates on the wealthy person's loans, so they are going to reduce its income.  So apparently, it is quite willing to reduce its income.  

      And since the wealthy person's loans are much larger, the bank is going to lose [or reduce] its interest income stream from those loans by a lot more compared to the bank's stream of income from the diarist's loan.

      So, it makes no sense for a bank to run around searching for people to offer lower rates.

      The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

      by dfarrah on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 10:18:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  As noted in para 2, though, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        they could have other reasons to refi: maybe they an affirmative obligation to do so or maybe they have an eye on getting wealth under management.

      •  I think you hit the nail on the head (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        When my then Jumbo mortgage was held by a large national bank, they used to contact me all the time to see if I wanted to refinance.  I suspect folks with superb credit scores and large enough mortgage amounts are customers a bank want to retain.

        My mortgage now is with another regional bank and smaller as I've paid it down over the years, so I don't think it's big enough for anyone to care about.

  •  Your sister wasn't offered "help" but a deal. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The calls came to her to sell her something, to take her money. Once she's at the lowest rate, the calls will cease. It's a sale, a deal, not help, and not mortgage relief.

    It sounds as if your loan modification happened because you got a job, albeit at a lower salary, and could pay. It may have been relief to you but it was a deal doable for both sides.  

    Had the Treasury (i.e., WH) assertively used its conservativeship of Fannie Mae to create a national emergency response, an across the board no fee refi to 30-years-fixed-2% back in 2009 then the US economy might have recovered, for all people, even today's long term unemployed.  

    Let all Bush tax cuts expire and , bring on the Sequestration cuts to defense.

    by kck on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 09:58:14 AM PDT

    •  That would've killed other banks, though, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      which were holding FNMA bonds.  And it would've caused huge problems w/ mutual funds and money markets that held FNMA securities, and that would've caused other systemic problems.

      There was really no free lunch during the crisis; every response would've been a trade-off that created other problems.

      •  Understood, but still see it as a good trade-off (0+ / 0-)

        ...which could have propelled the economy closer to where we are today several years earlier.

        Let all Bush tax cuts expire and , bring on the Sequestration cuts to defense.

        by kck on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 10:25:30 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I agree it is complicated (0+ / 0-)

        But I think that Govt. should have been more agressive in insisting that banks who took money gave mortgage relief.

        Numbers are like people . . . Torture them enough and they'll tell you anything.

        by Actuary4Change on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 02:48:59 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  It still doesn't (0+ / 0-)

      make sense for a bank to run around looking for people to lower interest rates on their loans with the bank as long as the borrower is paying as agreed.  

      It would make sense if the person was refinancing and going with another institution.  

      The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

      by dfarrah on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 10:21:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  95% of loans are almost instantly sold... (0+ / 0-) Fannie Mae and the banks function solely as servicers. For each transaction - loan or refi - servicers and originators make money.

        One thing I don't understand is why the banks instantly (i.e., by the 2'nd payment) resell virtually all residential mortgages to Fannie Mae and why FM buys them.  

        Let all Bush tax cuts expire and , bring on the Sequestration cuts to defense.

        by kck on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 10:30:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Liquidity... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          kck, Actuary4Change

          is one reason they sell loans.

          FM buys them because that's what it does.  It repackages them into the CMOs that investors buy.

          As an rate risk instructor explained to my class, it's like cutting up a chicken and selling it.  It's worth  more in pieces than the whole, so loans are pooled and chopped up and sold in pieces.

          The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

          by dfarrah on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 10:48:11 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  It sounds more like relief for the bank than the (0+ / 0-)


  •  I got relief (And I'm agree with the diary) (0+ / 0-)

    I contacted my bank (Wells Fargo) asking about a refi.  I was told that we didn't have enough equity so we would have to take out PMI, which would have offset any savings from the lower interest rate.

    Because I read about what's going on, I was informed enough to ask about the Attorneys General settlement.

    The guy on the other end of the phone said "Yeah, we just got a memo about that, let me see if I can find it. . .Oh, that's being handled by a separate area, let me transfer you."

    I was transferred to a very helpful person.  We needed full income verification to make sure we were a safe repayment risk.  It took about a month to get through all of the paperwork, but when it was all done, our Interest rate went from 5.375 to 4.25.  No closing costs, and no change in the other loan terms, just a reduction in our monthly payment.

    It's a nice boost to the monthly net income for a family that doesn't really need it.  It only happened because I knew the right question to ask.

    I'm not turning it down, but we need regulation that makes banks do this for the people who really need it.

    Numbers are like people . . . Torture them enough and they'll tell you anything.

    by Actuary4Change on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 03:00:12 PM PDT

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