5 Reasons Not to Apply for a Loan Modification in the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP)

by Xin Lu on 5 January 2010 48 comments
Photo: kroach

The Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) rolled out last year currently has over 700,000 people in trial modifications and a little over 30,000 in "permanent" modifications. The program has been plagued with consumer complaints of lost paperwork and denials. Here are some reasons why many consumers are better off skipping this program all together.

1. The "permanent" modification is not so permanent.

Those who are getting "permanent" modifications are actually getting an adjustable loan with a five year period of low interest. This was spelled out in the original program, so it is not very accurate to say that these modifications are permanent. It may be helpful to those who are confident that they can pay the readjusted terms in five years, but those who are applying should be aware that this modification may just delay an eventual foreclosure.

2. Money spent on trial modifications could be used elsewhere.

Many consumers are reporting that they are paying for trial modifications for many months and then face a denial of the modification. In these cases they would have been better off to just save the money while waiting for the bank to foreclose. Currently banks are very slow to foreclose and those who simply default end up saving a good chunk of change.

3. Debt is not reduced.

In many instances, those who go through the modification program end up with more debt than they started with as the banks roll in late fees and payments into the principal. In most cases the debt principal is not reduced and troubled homeowners are left paying for an asset that is worth less than their debt.

4. Credit is not saved.

Some consumers mistakenly believed that their credit will be saved if they enrolled in the modification program, but the truth is that banks are reporting trial modifications to credit bureaus as partial payments and credit scores are lowered nevertheless.

5. The program cannot help the unemployed.

Many people are having trouble paying their mortgages due to unemployment, but HAMP is specifically meant to reduce mortgage payments to 31% of a borrower's pretax income. If a borrower has no income then this program will not help.

The Obama administration is trying to get banks to make the modification process easier for consumers by sending "SWAT teams" to the servicers. It is yet to be seen how the program will fare this year, but so far it simply accomplished the feat of putting 30,000 homeowners into new adjustable rate mortgages with a five year teaser rate. Many of those denied the "permanent" modification unnecessarily drained their bank accounts.

What are your experiences with HAMP?

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Guest's picture
Q

In addition, HAMP mods start out as "trial" mods, and thus far few if any have actually been converted into permanent mods.

Guest's picture
Jim

#4 is a good point. Thats not good that your credit could be hurt while doing this.

#1 When they say "permanent" in that context they just mean modifications that are past the trial period. They aren't implying anything more than that.

Your interest can start as low as 2%. Its fixed for 5 years. After that it can go up as much as +1% per year until it hits 'market rate' at the time of modification. Right now market rate would be about 5%. The loan can never go past the predefined market rate and doesn't adjust upwards after that. So you will probably get 2% for years 1-5, 3% for year 6, 4% for year 7 and 5% thereafter. THis is hardly a rip off by any measure.

5. Unemployment income can be used to qualify. If you don't have enough income to have any chance of keeping your home then these programs won't help you.

Guest's picture

Jim is correct. #5 is dead wrong, but the others are true. Unemployment must last at least 9 months to qualify as income, which is difficult to prove[the treasury guidelines are to use 75% of unemployment income, which is not being followed]. I deal with this 15-20 times per day as a MHA Escalation Team member submitting info to Treasury/Fannie Mae. Anything i can do to help let me know.

Guest's picture
Guest

I am a real estate broker andobviously have been hit hard in this economic downturn. I am not underwater nor have I ever been late in my mortgage payments. However, within the next 6 months my savings will be depleted and paying my monthly mortgage will be difficult as right now the only steady income I have is social security. All of this I explained to the loan modification group at Wells Fargo when I discussed my eligibilty. "The rules have changed, we can help you..." and so, I applied. Wells Fargo didn't "get to" my paperwork for 3 months and then asked that I re-submit it as it was no longer current. I was told I had to re-submit within 48 hours. I updated and re-submitted. I quickly received my answer. My application was denied because, surprise, I did not have enough income and I was not underwater and had some money left in my bank account. This 6 month circus was topped off with a letter suggesting a short sale or foreclosure, I started receiving phone calls from Wells Fargo basically wanting to know which direction I would like to go. What the company could have done was suggest reverse mortgage as I am over 62. Or, just selling the property at a price where it would sell and the loser would be me as it would diminish my equity but they would still get paid. A short sale? A foreclosure? It was a robotic response.

Guest's picture
Guest

Good points Jim! We were successful in receiving a modification through the MHAP. We worked with Bank of America and while I read horror stories everyday, our experience was excellent. (Short of the 1 year of worrying and feeling as if our life was on hold.)

I believe the key to our success was engaging the help of our US Senator, Jeanne Shaheen. Senator Shaheen's office sent in a congressional inquiry which in turn put our case in front of someone and allowed it to be assigned to 1 person. We had one point of contact for the entire 8-10 month process.

When we completed our trial mod, we received our perm mod paperwork within days. Our contact at BofA said that 9 out of 10 times the reason why the mod's are denied is for failure of the borrower to prove income and/or to send in complete documents.

Of course I don't know how true this is but I can only speak from my own experience, which was great.

I suggest that those people that feel as if they are getting the run around contact their US Senators for help!

Guest's picture
Ann

Thanks for this information, I have been thinking of this. I dont think I qualify but still very good information.

Guest's picture
Guest

I modified 6 mos ago and now I owe a LOT more and am in a CONSTANT battle with my lender over the "computer" system trying to foreclose on my house every month. Im stuck in a loop of fees, payments that are DOUBLE what I was originally paying and a telephone tree to India.

Guest's picture
Guest

some more investigation will let you know(was having same probs w/telephone tree to India r Pakistan)...resold motgage was probly bought by WELLS FARGO...it's ALL a crying shame

Andrea Karim's picture

Did you modify through this program? I'd be so curious to know what the terms were.

Guest's picture
davecop

We entered into a trial modifcation with Saxon Mortgage on July 2009. We have made all the payments on time and returned all documents on time. In october 2009 we called them at the end of the three months. They told us they were extending it by two months beucase of the backlog. This week on the same day we wired them the January 2010 trail payment. We get soem letter that says their prelim review says out trial mofication may not pan out. However at the request of the US treasurey our loan has been placed into a review status again until Jan 31 2010.

When we went into this program were were 132 days late.

According to documents releaased by the goverment this is what it says about major lemnders and their stats.

Servicer
ParticipationDate
Estimated Eligible 60+ DayDelinquency1
Trial Plan Offers Extended
All HAMP Trials
Started
ActiveTrial Modifications 2
Permanent Modifications2
Active Trials + Permanents as Share of Eligible 60+ Day Delinquencies
American Home Mortgage Servicing Inc
7/22/09
120,787
12,621
7,642
7,430
201
6%
Aurora Loan Services, LLC3
5/1/09
75,829
38,110
32,794
21,717
3,622
33%
Bank of America, NA4
4/17/09
1,018,192
244,139
158,462
156,864
98
15%
Bank United
10/23/09
5,102
672
0
0
0
0%
BayviewLoan Servicing, LLC
7/1/09
9,908
3,638
2,995
2,884
50
30%
Carrington Mortgage Services LLC
4/27/09
18,413
2,298
1,491
1,198
293
8%
CCO Mortgage
6/17/09
5,173
1,353
789
789
0
15%
CitiMortgage, Inc.5
4/13/09
233,924
127,594
103,478
100,126
271
43%
Franklin CreditManagement Corporation
9/11/09
9,612
0
0
0
0
0%
GMAC Mortgage, Inc.
4/13/09
67,539
39,657
28,275
19,559
7,111
39%
Green Tree Servicing LLC
4/24/09
4,072
1,154
754
692
2
17%
HomEqServicing
8/5/09
40,969
1,987
657
657
0
2%
J.P. Morgan Chase Bank, NA6
4/13/09
448,815
199,033
143,027
136,686
4,302
31%
Litton Loan Servicing LP
8/12/09
109,614
22,702
16,909
16,870
39
15%
MorEquity, Inc.
7/17/09
2,283
392
49
49
0
2%
NationstarMortgage LLC
5/28/09
47,566
22,251
11,717
11,286
358
24%
OcwenFinancial Corporation, Inc.
4/16/09
66,351
15,961
9,783
5,515
4,252
15%
OneWestBank
8/28/09
111,674
35,313
19,623
19,623
0
18%
PNC Mortgage7
6/26/09
45,240
17,526
10,591
9,902
18
22%
ResidentialCredit Solutions
6/12/09
2,189
399
368
270
98
17%
RG Mortgage Corporation
6/17/09
3,223
348
90
67
23
3%
Saxon Mortgage Services, Inc.
4/13/09
80,309
39,145
35,608
35,565
42
44%
Select Portfolio Servicing
4/13/09
61,615
42,244
26,806
19,552
218
32%
US Bank NA
9/9/09
26,354
9,084
6,518
6,480
38
25%
Wachovia Mortgage, FSB8
7/1/09
82,457
6,542
2,371
1,980
351
3%
Wells Fargo Bank, NA
4/13/09
334,949
148,240
104,808
96,137
3,537
30%
Other SPA servicers9
--
4,779
434
432
251
167
8%
Other GSE Servicers10
--
262,842
NA
33,021
24,877
6,291
NA
Total
3,299,780
1,032,837
759,058
697,026
31,382
24%
HAMP Modification Activity by Servicer
1 Estimated eligible 60+ day delinquent mortgages as reported by servicers

Guest's picture
MarciaT

For those who still may be interested, here is the link to the original application page, and to see if you qualify. We had started an application with our bank, and they "forgot" to get back to us.....

http://www.makinghomeaffordable.gov/

Guest's picture
Guest

We just closed on a 3 step close at home loan program through Wells Fargo. The loan documents were straight forward, showing a permanent reduction in our int rate for the full 30 yr term (we were only in the previous loan for 1.75yrs). There were no closing costs and the payments reduced by $180 per month. I did have to call to make sure everything was closed and we had to deal with a few people who didn't know what was going on. Their figures showed a reduction of total int paid at about $30K over the life of the loan - we had to go for it. Could this have been a different loan program?

Guest's picture
Guest

WELLS FARGO, but they just game me & my family the BIG SHAFT...oops or was that...oooOOooh, just get bad feelings in this economy

Xin Lu's picture
Xin Lu

Guest it sounds like you did an easy refi.  That's not the same as a loan modification, but I'm not sure on the details of your situation with Wells.  Congratulations though.

Guest's picture
Guest

We applied for HAMP 2x. We were denied the 1st time, and told we didn't "qualify", but were given no other explaination as to why. Even the customer service reps were unable to tell us why. Then we defaulted a few months later (as well as on ALL our credit cards) and reapplied in November '09. I called our bank to see what was going on with our application. I was told we passed a "preliminary review" and our app. was sent to a "trial office" to come up with a payment we're supposed to pay for 3 months.
My question's are: Why would someone NOT qualify after making 3 months of successful, on-time payments?

Does anyone know if being in default of revolving debt, such as credit cards have anything to do with NOT qualifying?

Guest's picture
Guest

The same thing happened with us. We were told after almost 8 months, that if we could make the final 3 payments on time, we would be approved for a permanent mod. Low and behold, we received a call from our mortgage company that the paperwork got kicked back because there were liens on our house. And guess who put the liens there? Credit card companies. So we have no idea if we can do another "trial" mod and see what can be done, or if this the end of the line. We planned on taking care of the credit card issues once we received our permanent mod, because we felt keeping the house was a priority (we have 5 children). So short answer yes, it could be because of credit card debt. If anyone had been through this, and knows what can be done, or what our next step should be, please help!

Guest's picture

On March 4th, 2009 the Obama administration revealed its plan to help millions of distressed homeowners in danger of foreclosure. The program was proudly touted as the definitive way out of the current housing and mortgage crisis. Since April 2009 the program is responsible for 728,408 active modifications. 697,026 are in the trial period and 31,382 have been made permanent.

Although there has been plenty of time for loan servicers and lenders to strengthen their efforts and start making a considerable difference in preventing home foreclosures, many servicers have repeatedly chosen to aggravate the crisis through noncompliance and excuses.

Prior to the introduction of HAMP, servicers' efforts to modify loans had picked up a considerable amount of steam. By March of 2009 loan servicers' efforts in private in house modifications were running at a pace of 120,000 per month. That means that if left to their own devices servicers and lenders had they continued at that pace would have completed modifications on more than 1.2 million loan modifications.

It is now harder than ever to get assistance from your lender due to the new heavy documentation and government bureaucracy created by HAMP. It is not however an impossible task. Even with its bureaucratic red tape many homeowners have been able to get payment reductions that helped them save their homes.

If you are looking for assistance with HAMP be sure to get up to speed and learn everything you can about the guidelines and requirements. Talk to your lender BEFORE submitting an application. With HAMP you only have one bite at the apple. You have to get it right on the first try.

Here is what you will definitely need to submit a complete file to your lender:

Last 4 paystubs for everyone in the house who earns money. If you don't have paystubs, you will need a cash letter from the wage earner defining what they take home monthly. (Yes your lender WILL accept this, it's in their best interest).
2 years W2's for each wage earner in the home.
2 years tax returns
2 months bank statements - your lender will require ALL pages of your statements. If you don't have them, go to your bank and get a 2 month printout, make sure that someone in the branch stamps and signs the printout or your lender may not accept it
If you are self employed you will need to provide a profit and loss statement that spans a minimum of 3 months, I recommend you do this for a 6 month period
A well written concise ONE PAGE hardship letter
An income and expense sheet that shows Monthly Numbers for Gross Income, Net Income and all household expenses

If you take the time to prepare and do it in a well organized manner you will improve your chances of getting a modification under HAMP greatly. Get educated QUICKLY; learn everything you can about the HAMP guidelines and what your lender offers in the way of assistance. Plan your request for assistance and be organized and prepared BEFORE you submit anything to your lender.

Remember the disclaimer they read you when you call?

It's the one where they tell you they are required by law to advise you they are attempting to collect a debt and anything you tell them will be used for that purpose. No matter how nice the representative sounds, they work for the lender and they are there to help collect your payments.

Homeowners looking to take advantage of HAMP should always make sure to Get Educated so they can Get Modified and Get On With Their Lives...

Guest's picture
Guest

I have for over 9 months paid a pre-trial modification which started June 2009 and on Janurary 15, 2010 I was told I am denied of the program due to I do not live in my home. I have sent much proof this is not true but Bank of America still refused to correct this error.
So, what I am doing is going to the US Treasury and all I can because this is not help at all.

Guest's picture
BD

Bank of America - what a joke they are!!! I just went through the same thing with them and received my letter if denial today!!! After speaking to them they said I did not return requested information within 30 days..ummm I started this back in August and "requested information" was submitted 3 times!!! What the letters didn't say, and neither did anyone I spoke to in the last 3 months was they needed "updated" information, new bank statements, new pay stubs yada, yada, yada. I contacted my State representative, congressman and senators AND sent an email to the White House from their web site 2 months ago, never heard anything back from them either, even though the site asks if you would like a response...might as well have been talking to the walls!! Good luck to you with the US Treasury

Guest's picture
Guest

This doesn't surprise me. Bank of America it is so backwards in everything they say. I've had to repeat conversations back to my account representative in detail, because I wrote everything down, and then she'd say "that's right, I have it right here", or that items were never received, just to have her then, yes, I've got them, next day, I'll get a letter in the mail that the same items that she said she had they now needed again...Just insane. I am thinking more and more that this is just a gimmick to see how far they can get you and then foreclose on you anyway.
I guess complaining to a higher authority is just the thing to do, because what they're supposed to do is help people, but they've decided not to.

Guest's picture

PS. Call 888-995-HOPE and get housing counseling. They can conference with the mortgage lender to a HOPE counselor number at most lenders. You may request MHA Help Team ONLY if you are in the trial period to escalate it to treasury. And actually, #1 is wrong too, as Jim explained. Plus, the guidelines are not exactly being followed and some permanents have the same payment for the life of the loan.

Guest's picture
Guest

I can't believe this, but we are considering walking away from the 2 bedroom house we have owned for over 9 years in southern CA. It is currently only worth 50% of what we owe. Who do we talk to..? A financial advisor; an attorney (who specializes in what?); a real estate agent who does short sales?
Our situation is complex, but we are both employed, and I know we don't qualify for any government programs.
Can the lender go after our assets if we default on payments (we have not yet)? Our only debt is this nightmare mortgage.

Guest's picture
Z. Burkett

I feel your pain, all of you. I was fortunate enough to find a company that is legitimate. Now I know that the banks the news and government say we shouldn't go to any company that charges, that the banks will modify your loans for free. Well, how many of us on here have had our loans modified by the banks? A lot have lost their homes, and lot more still will unless you do what's necessary to save your homes from the banks. I went through what most of you have, I was there. Then I was referred to Corey Lassiter of Clear Image Financial Group. They saved my home. I know I would have lost it to Wachovia if it wasn't for him, Tasha, Denise and the rest of the people who work there. Got me caught up on my mortgage 1st & 2nd, lowered my interested rate & payment, and secured me a 50k principle reduction. Before anyone else on here loses their homes you need to give them a call 877-940-1477 ext 231. Corey Lassiter. Don't be afraid of hiring a loan modification company, be afraid of the banks, they are the ones who are taking our homes!

Guest's picture

Guys - this is a scam. No one can guarantee you any modification, it's based off income. There is no such thing as a principal write off, only a principal 5 year forbearance or a hope 4 homeowners program. There is NO cost for a loan mod., and any upfront fee IS a scam. CALL 888-995-HOPE, a non-profit HUD-certified hotline who can conference call with your lender.

Guest's picture
Guest

I think the whole thing is a scam. We have been in touch with the HOPE network and after a year they have still not been directly involved with any assistance!! The bank has not done anything for our situation after two applications and 2 special forebearances!! The bottom line is that the bank does not want to lose any money no matter what!!! If you know a legitimate form of assistance PLEASE let me know! I am tired of living with the fear, guilt, lack of caring, greed,etc!!!!!

Guest's picture

Banks lose 40-50k foreclosing. The problem with the 'caring' is the bottom-line min wage representatives. If you get false info or bad service just call back. 888-995-HOPE is the single best solution for working with your mortgage lender by increasing education and communication by our special phone #'s to the lender. And yes, there is a possibility that you just don't qualify.

Guest's picture
Z Burkett

I understand totally what it is that you are saying. We all are at a huge MAJOR disadvantage in these negotiation proceedings. In these dealings! What I don't understand is that since I know that we aren't the only ones who realize this (or are we?), why aren't more people going to lawyers and compliant loan modification companies to get their loans modified? Instead they will listen to their lenders who tell them not to, then they frustrate the hell out of you until you give up and/or lose your homes...Then you want to find a lawyer for a class action lawsuit. That doesn't bring your home back...

The government needs to do something to punish these banks for not doing what they agreed to do when they accepted that tarp money...And, we as consumers need to take all of our money out of these banks, and open up accounts at our local credit unions. Money is all they seem to understand. We all know that the President can't do this all himself. And, the other politicians can't seem to agree on anything fast enough to help all or most of us homeowners not lose our homes. I feel for anyone who has to lose their homes when they don't have to. YOU NEED TO DO WHAT'S BEST FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY TO SAVE YOUR HOMES! NOT LISTEN TO THE SELF CENTERED ADVICE THAT THE LENDERS ARE TELLING YOU. Hire a professional to get this loan modification done for you. The legitimate ones know what they are doing, do your research. Find the right company or lawyer (one who knows what he's doing) and go at the banks like you'd goto court..prepared with the best representation that you can find..I can't stress this enough how much sleep I got and gray hairs I lost once I turned my case over to Corey Lassiter at Clear Image Financial Group, Inc.. They are one of the good guys. Kept in touch with me from the very beginning, I could view updates on their website, or phone in and speak to the negotiator assigned to my case, as well as I don't know how many time I spoke to Mr. Lassiter on the weekend or late in the evening via his cell phone. He always took the time to speak to me. Then when my loan mod was approved, I could exhale....They got accomplished in 90 days what I couldn't seem to get past step one for about 6 months. I will never forget what he told to me.. He said, " When the banks ask you questions over the phone or ask you to send in the same paperwork over and over again, they are not really looking to approve you. They are hoping you tell them or send them something to disqualify yourselves". And, the more I read these blogs and forums the more I realize that that is 100% true. Anyone who says that all lawyers or loan modifications companies who charge are scams, MUST BE WORKING FOR OR ARE FUNDED BY THE BANKS!

Look for yourselves, out of the 344 comments on here am I the only one who got approved? I must of been the only one who used a professional! You have a better chance of getting approved if you do. His contact info for all you smart people who whats to keep their homes is 877-940-1477 ext 231, classiter@clearimagefg.com. I can lead you to water..well you know the rest!

Guest's picture

Reasons to call 888-995-HOPE include:

1. It's free. We have no incentive to scam desperate borrowers. We're financed by mortgage lenders, government agencies, and the Homeownership Preservation Foundation.
2. 100% Transparency. We will conference call with you and the mortgage servicer to talk about loan mod./ pre-foreclosure options. Loan mod. companies ask you to stop paying the mortgage, don't call your bank, submit docs to us and we'll 'take care of it.' Through this method, they are able to drag clients out 3-6 months while they change their phone/fax/email, change company name, file bankruptcy, etc. Even the ones that don't do this: take on more clients than they could possibly ever service, for an upfront fee, and are doing what you can do yourself but are frustrated. Let's be respectful and assume 10% satisfaction. Through trials and tribulation it is NOT possible to thouroughly research a loan mod. company. Clients tell me every day they got scammed even though a family/ friend member referred them.
3. No false promises. The Making Home Affordable Modification Program's monthly PITIA payment is based on 31% of your gross monthly income. That's it, no negotiating the monthly payment.

Now, to rebuttle Z. Burkett:
"Anyone who says that all lawyers or loan modifications companies who charge are scams, MUST BE WORKING FOR OR ARE FUNDED BY THE BANKS!"
Firstly, CAPS/exclamations are the number one sign of scams/rip-offs. Secondly, there is no negotiating a lower payment/loan mod., as stated, it's based off investor participation, gross income, less than 3 months PITI payment in the bank, hardship situation, etc. If you need help in reaching helpful representatives from your servicer, give 888-995-HOPE a call and ask for housing counseling. It's free, HUD-certified, and we have hotlines with the lender for this situation. Banks don't want more homes, and they don't get paid the incentives until the mod. is permanent. Don't pay someone 2 grand when better help is free.

PS I'm working on the MHA help team, escalating trial period files to the Dep't of Treasury. I'm just here to help, and it is free.
makinghomeaffordable.gov 888-995-HOPE - request Housing Counseling.

Guest's picture
Guest

Our payments are usually 926.00 per month because our Arm loan with First Franklin adjustable percentage is at its lowest due the economy. When the percentage goes up, our payment is usually 1235.00 per month.
After submitting our application for a modification in July, 09, it took 6 months to get accepted for a trial payment period. Finally after months of resubmitting paperwork and calling, We get a " congradulations, you had been approved for our making loan affordable trial payment period" over the phone. We were calling in to make a January payment for 926.00. First Franklin told us that we only needed to make a lessor trial payment instead, based on 33% of our income, so we did. We received another packet in the mail, to turn in the same paperwork again? Ok, so we re-submitted on time, and made our trial payments every month. Just after we paid our 3rd payment, we got a letter in the mail showing how behind we were. We had been accustom to seing this delinquent letter, because we have always been 2 months behind and trying to avoid 3rd because thats when they will begin forclosure. First Franklin had probabley been hoping that we hang ourselves on that 3rd month for months now. Well, they get their wish. This letter was different, because now, we are 3 months behind with just over 1000.00 in late fees making the accumulation of charges just over 5000.00. Of course the fees went up by over 300.00 during the trial period and went up by 1 more month of 926.00 + they added the current amount due as well, of another 926.00 to make is look worse that it really is (like bill collectors always do).
It took me 3 months since the trial began and a letter to wake me up and see the SCAM and wish I had seen it sooner.
Here it is: They tell us that the reduced trial payment is based on 33% of our monthly income? Not true, I added up our income and found the figures were off by about 200.00 give or take, and thought it was close enough back in January. I Trusted them at the time, besides, why would a mortgage co lie to us?
But if you calculate our trial payment X 3 months and then take our regular payment of 926.00 x 3, then subract the difference in savings, it comes out to exactly 926.00. Just enough to put us at 3 months behind. So I wonder if this was coincidence? or made specifically to put us passed due that 1 more month needed to foreclose? They know that our equity is 60,000.00. I will tell you what though, If we dont hear from them on an approval by april 8th, 2010, which is the due date of the letter, we will submit a petition to the US bankruptcy court under chapter 13 protection. The bank will be the only creditor on it for just over 5000.00. This way the bank will be forced to eccept the minimun payment that law permits for them, so that they cannot touch the house or anything in it. Yes, we will have to deal with the arm loan and can never be behind again, and need to pay a trustee an extra 200.00 per month. We are coming back on our feet, and have a wonderful family member (accountant) handling our bills and money, thus saving our necks. So we will be ok at least until we sell our house, But we will not let First Franklin Scam us!! We worked hard on home improvements, to gain equity. The equity is all we have left, we lose our home, we will have nothing.

Guest's picture
Guest

Your story was very inspiring, and I learned so much. I can't believe how they used the new fee to put you 3 months in arrears, very sneaky. I think the same way too, why would your bank do that when they're trying to help you?....My husband believes different, that they're always scheming and hope you lose your house. I hope that once my kids are old enough to own a house, I could give them the cash to buy it and not use a bank. Just a horrible organization it turned out to be.. I'm very happy that you thought ahead about submitting a petition for Chapter 13 protection..very smart..did you have to use it?
Good luck to you.

Guest's picture
maria

I just successfully modified HAMP with Citi Mortgage, for the second time. My deal was Fantatastic. Everything went perfect my payments are reduced to so little. Don't give up some people really are getting help. Just be sure you really can show income to pay the mortgage. You can figure the 31% out yourself. It is not a scam, I have no fees, I am only paying interest on 1/2 my real principle Forever and the most it will Ever go is 4% on 1/2 my principle. Forever. I will never see the remaining $230,000 until I go to pay it off. And then I will owe it. For now it is like a have a 2% loan of $200,000.

Guest's picture
Victor

This is so wonderful.  I  am also so excited.  I just completed my 3rd trial payment on April 1st.  I was told that as of Apil 27th my modification is permenant.  I am so happy.  My payments were  $1596.00.  They have now been lowered to $702.53.   This was a long process and I stopped making my mortgage payents last year in June 2009.  My trial began Feb 2010 and now my modification if finally permenant and I thank God that this new program was available.  If not for the Making Homes Affordable I surely would have lost my home.  This program is not a scam...

Victor G

 

Guest's picture
Guest

Good for you. I have been trying for almost 2 years and now Citi is threatening to foreclose on me. I sent them 2 years worth of docs which they keep losing, I have called them and they are NEVER helpful and today I was told I have 72 hours to get them more bank statements. I explained that I have to go in for surgery in the morning and asked them to please give me more time but they are not willing to work with you. Can you give me the name of the person who approved you so I can speak to that person? Citi has been terrible and I have paid the trial amount for almost 2 years and now they want 12K more.

Guest's picture
John Wright

If it walks like a piggy, talks like a piggy, by golly it’s a PIGGY!

BofA and it’s CEO

 

 

Brian Moynihan reminds me of that song by John Lennon and George Harrison titled "Piggies" I invite you to listen to this song on youtube and see if it appropriately fits.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MIopI2isIKc&amp;feature=related</P

Have you seen the little piggies
Crawling in the dirt
And for all the little piggies
Life is getting worse
Always having dirt to play around in.

Have you seen the bigger piggies
In their starched white shirts
You will find the bigger piggies
Stirring up the dirt
Always have clean shirts to play around in.

In their ties with all their backing
They don't care what goes on around
In their eyes there's something lacking
What they need's a damn good whacking.

Everywhere there's lots of piggies
Living piggy lives
You can see them out for dinner
With their piggy wives
Clutching forks and knives to eat their bacon.

Wright vs. Bank of America Lawsuit at: http://news.yahoo.com/s/prweb/20100323/bs_prweb/prweb3766544_1

When I filed my lawsuit against Bank of America, myself and United Law Group thought of the many others out there in the same situation. It was then that we decided to educate the public on what these piggy banks are doing, as well as unite us all together as one voice. Please help me turn this David vs. Goliath modification process, into a Goliath vs. Goliath.

Please stand with me and United Law Group and send an email to Bank of America that states that we will no longer tolerate their potentially illegal, fraudulent, irregular and abusive business methods.

Divided we might have fell America, but united we must stand!

Please send your email directly to Bank of America and include the following:

1. Your name

2. Your complaint concerning your experience with Bank of America.

3. Please end your email "I support John Wright vs. BofA Lawsuit!"

4. Please send a copy of your email to johns-wright@hotmail.com

5. Please send your email to both BofA link below and the CEO email

 

BofA Linked Email:

https://www3.bankofamerica.com/contact/?lob=general&contact_returnto=&st...

CEO Brian Moynihan:

brian.t.moynihan@bankofamerica.com

Guest's picture
John wright

I own a home and paid my mortgage on time for over five years! Then people where I lived started losing their homes and it hurt my customer base for my small company. I mean I have not seen anything like this the entire time I have owned my company (25 years). These greedy little piggy banks potentially cause the whole housing crisis and then got a bail out in the billions! I have been an honest business owner the entire time and paid my taxes. For what!? For them to give the Piggy Banks a bail out? The very Piggy Banks that potentially caused the crisis!? Like the idea of modifications or not, TARP received 591 billion dollars of tax payer money and if anyone is going to get a bail out, it needs to be the American Tax Payer! Can you imagine what bank made off just having $25 billion dollars?

So I would like to play a game of truth or dare with Bank of America concerning their press releases.

Truth: Did Bank Of America make any money on the 25 billion dollar bail out the Tax Payer gave you?

Dare: I dare BofA to give the following press release: "Bank of America is one of the world's largest financial institutions giving modifications to the American Tax Payer!"

Never the less, let us give our press release for BofA to read:

 

Which one do you guys think they will pick? I think they would pick Dare Before they would ever pick TRUTH.

Please stand with me and United Law Group and send an email to Bank of America that states that we will no longer tolerate their potentially illegal, fraudulent, irregular and abusive business methods.

One blogger named Terri sent me an email stating: "You won't believe it but while I was at work today I had a voicemail from an advocate from BofA. What do you think about that? No calls all this time, I respond to your email and I get a cal!. How do you like that one?

Divided we might have fell America, but united we must stand!

So please send your email directly to Bank of America and include the following:

1. Your name

2. Your complaint concerning your experience with Bank of America.

3. Please end your email "I support John Wright vs. BofA Lawsuit!"

4. Please send a copy of your email to johns-wright@hotmail.com

5. Please send your email to both BofA link below and the CEO email

CEO Brian Moynihan:

brian.t.moynihan@bankofamerica.com

BofA Linked Email:

https://www3.bankofamerica.com/contact/?lob=general&contact_returnto=&st...

The lawfirm representing me set me up with my own page with the option to comment. Since I have a lawsuit against Bank of America, I am sure they will view the page. Please show your support by going to the site and showing your support with your comments about your situation.

You can do it at:

www.unitedlawgroup.com/news_ULG_files_suit_bofa_behalf_john_wright.html#...

John Wright Vs. Bank of America

Sincerely,

Johns-wright@hotmail.com

 

Guest's picture
Guest

Z Burkett Man Im in the process of doing the same thing.... i asked this same question in another blog.....why aren't people hiring professionals.. i really enjoyed what you said It made my day, its the only blog i read that made perfect sense in light of all the things i been reading.!!

Guest's picture

There's no such thing as 'professionals'... just unemployed real estate brokers and scammy attorney making false promises and upfront fees [illegally], then filing bankruptcy/ disappearing.

Guest's picture
sandy

We were current on our home and making our payments even after my husband lost his job. We knew eventually times would get tough so we applied for the home loan modification program. We went into the trial period and paid the lower payment on time and was told if we did that nothing would be marked against us.

A week after we got the letter from the bank stating that we got denied for the program we got a letter from lawyers stating that they were foreclosing on our house.
I am so pissed and don't know what to do. I can't find any info on who can help. to me this program is a load of ****!!!

Guest's picture
Brenda

It makes me sick how mortgage modification firms capitalize on government programs & peoples hardships just to earn a buck! Owners of freeHAMPreport Jonathan Ende & Jason Saltzman are a prime example of this kind of greed!

If Jonathan Ende & Jason Saltzman were honest people they would not deceive the American public into thinking freeHAMPreport.com is FREE!

The use www.freeHAMPreport.com as a scheme to get your personal information! After they fool you into inputting all your personal data they ask you to pay them $495.00 or they sell you personal information to any 3rd party that will pay them!

When you ask Jonathan Ende & Jason Saltzman why they sold my name, phone, email, address & loan information all they want to tell me is that I should have settled up with them for $195.00!

I was forced to change my phone number & email to stop the badgering from telemarketers!

Guest's picture
Virginia

I, too, am in dire straits with Wells Fargo. We had a new company take over at work. The resulting changes caused a drop in our income of $1500 per month! needless to say we could not keep up with our $2500 mtg. (2,000 first & 500 second) We went through 2 HUD counselors and much more hassle until Wells Fargo granted us a 3 month trial period of $1500/mo on the first mtg. WF sold the 2nd mtg to NationStar - who has been wonderful to help the situation by lowering our payment and interest. We did those 3 months for WF fine, but then when they sent notification of the set amount it was back up to $2000! Oh my God! We are again behind 2 months because we just can't afford it, which WF knows! We are waiting to hear back from WF after we called to ask how this was supposed to help us....I want to cry when I think how greedy the banks are. They really don't care about real people trying to have a home.

Guest's picture
GuestGAB

my lender sold my house when I was doing the loan modification process, Did not sent the extension on my forclosure day, they did a violation. but now everybody is passing the ball, and throw my family to the street.

Guest's picture
DW

It's not the program that stinks, it's the banks. I was current with a high interest rate and no job, making payments out of my savings. I was turned down by HAMP for insufficient income but made all my payments on time. Unfortunately, Citimortgage decided to apply my mortgage payments toward my escrow, even though my loan was not escrowed. Now I am four months behind and they want to foreclose. Or I can take their crappy deal of adding $15,000 on to my principal and a $25,000 baloon payment in five years. And since I am not upside down on my note, they win either way and I lose.

Guest's picture
Joy

My Boyfriend was approved for the HAMP Program. We have paid for three months with the reduced monthly paymnts. Our problem is they sent us paperwork to sign to finalize the the loan modification and they have tacked on an additional 20,000.00 to the loan! They refuse to give any detail explanation as to the loan increase except for "It's our standard fees". We have requested a break down for the additional charges and the morgage company refuse to provide them or give any detailed information over the phone as to the increase. We are very leary to sign but afraid that we will loose our home if we do not. Can anyone give us some advise.

Guest's picture
Guest

Well I've moved out today after recieving a 24 hour notice to vacate. We made out 3 month payments and all the rest of them. They still forclosed us and now we have to live in a motel until we can find a rental

Guest's picture
Home Owner in PA

The banks and the government are not interested in us or our problems. They want our assets. The "free" assistance is often offered by the very government who created this problem - and did so intentionally. Most agents are aware of this, while their "drones" are supposed to stave us off and keep us from effectively achieving anything.

You need to hire an attorney specialized in home loan modifications and related legal options. Your attorney works for YOU, knows what the lender is obligated to do, has contacts with your lender, and knows what is available and required by both the lender and the government. Decision-makers do not talk to us. Most people you can actually reach are ignorant of the process, while quite a few are knowingly violating us and our rights.

Hire an attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney can file for a stay, which buys you time. The lenders and government have legal departments. You need someone who can prove you are compliant, and that your lender must comply.

Be careful to hire a specialized attorney - not some scam artist agency or agent. Check him out with Attorney General, Better Business Bureau, Bar Association, and consumer agencies. Pay for legal representation - not a "helper to file for the loan mod"! Keep records of all communications regarding the lender.

That being said, you cannot assume you are entitled or win. However, upon proper guidance and representation, you have greatly increased the odds of "winning" your loan modification, short sale, or deed in lieu of foreclosure.

Guest's picture
Guest

I made application to Bank of America in April 2011. After extensive conversations with several B of A people in their HAMP program, I was assured I met the qualifications to modify our two B of A mortgages, and made formal application. In May, June & July I had to repeatedly resubmit "lost" documents and submit "additional" information not initially requested. In late July I was told I did not qualify because "rental property" doesn't qualify. (Note: our modest lake home has NEVER been rented to anyone). An argument ensued with this B of A individual who became hostel and obnoxious. He flat refused to let me talk to a supervisor, saying his say was "final". At the end of the 20 minute conversation he said "well, it doesn't matter anyway, because you're current on your mortgage, so you don't qualify anyway"! I asked him for an explanation of this where upon he said "I'm not going to argue with you" and hung up on me. A subsequent call to another B of A person took place. He said I was qualified, and asked me to resubmit a couple of utility bills. I immediately did.

Then - silence! Several phone calls produced no help, nobody knew what the status was. Registered letters in August and October went unanswered. Finally in January 2012 we decided to withhold a payment to get their attention. It did. I was assigned a "focal point" person to try to help. She had no records of any contact following the conversation of July 2011. She went over our application and said we did not qualify. She apologized for the "confusion" of the past 9 months. She has offered to try to help us, asking for the re submission of all our information previously given, but is unable or unwilling to tell me what program or help might be available.

Bank of America does not operate in good faith. B of A is back to making big profits after their bailouts, but there's no incentive for them to help trouble homeowners caught up in this housing fiasco - so they don't. They deliberately make the customer jump through hoops over and over again, stalling until they simply give up. They appear to be corrupt. No documented request for help should take months bordering on a year! Ridiculous! What a complete waste of time and energy!

Guest's picture

While HAMP has had its share of problems, I think a few of the complaints in this article are overblown or perhaps outdated since the post is now 2 years old. The ramp up in payments after the 5th year should not be very much. Principal reduction as part of HAMP is now possible.

One problem is transparency. To help create some transparency I've started "The Unofficial HAMP Loan Modification Calculator" at www.armdisarm.com. It isn't a tease where you input all this data and then get asked for your contact info to be spam blasted. All the calculations are available immediately. Please give it a try.

Guest's picture
Tom E.

I think the headline says it all regarding reasons why not to apply for a loan modification.

The numbers are insane. 700,000 people are in a trial, while only 30,000 people have gotten permanent mods. These people would probably be better off playing poker.

A loan modification is almost like a debt settlement program. The difference is that with a reputable debt settlement company, the negotiators will settle 90 out of 100 collection accounts. 9 out of 10 loan modifications don't go through, so that's the difference in debt settlement and loan modification.

So consumers can say. "Do I get my home modified or credit cards settled in order to stay current on my home. I need more cash-flow from somewhere or I will fall behind on my home."

Homeowners that are contemplating bk or doing a loan modification would be better off utilizing a debt settlement program, where they can have their monthly unsecured debt payments lowered, allowing them to actually stay current on their mortgage.

Think about it. If someone is paying on 50k in credit card debt and current, they are probably paying out around $1,250 monthly. On a debt settlement program we could set them up with a payment at $900 per month and getting them out of debt in around 3 years. This consumer could have an extra $350 per month in their pocket, to put towards their mortgage. Now they will not need to file for bankruptcy or do a loan modification.