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Old 10-31-2009, 12:18 PM   #1
richlevy
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Banking Bastards

So we recently refinanced our mortage with Bank of America, which held our old mortgage. This shouldn't be a problem, since we really didn't switch banks, should it?

Well, we just got notice that they have recalculated our escrow. It seems they think our township tax, which was about $150 last year, will be about $5000 this year, and want to double our mortgage payments.

My guess is that some clerk doing research mistook the township tax rate for the total tax rate (county + township + school).

Mrs. Levy tried talking to BofA about it, but got stonewalled.

Under RESPA, we can send them a letter which they have to acknowledge in 20 business days and fix in 60 business days (total 4 months). If I have to scramble to pay double mortgage payments for 4 months I am so going to sue those bastards.

We'll try to talk to BofA as well as our congressman's office.
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Old 10-31-2009, 09:36 PM   #2
monster
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Don't pay. pay what you believe you should until they fix it. Or go and sit in their office until they fix it
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Old 10-31-2009, 09:40 PM   #3
skysidhe
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That's rough. I'd be sitting in their office for sure.
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Old 10-31-2009, 10:05 PM   #4
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Squeaky wheel gets the grease...so keep on em.

Ask for supervisors, handlers, processors, any higher up that can get the situation fixed. Don't go away or hang up or agree with any brush offs. Hound them, and have your proof of the correct tax rate and estimated escrows handy to show them.

There should be a process to dispute the calculation, which may include arbitration and/or mediation by a third party. I'd google and ask around until I figured out what I needed to do, because I would bet cold cash BoA won't tell you up front.

Good luck!


Note: I learned a lot about how to get CS to respond when I had a serious issue with service at Verizon. I found out there is a 'secret' (ie: not public) department there whose sole function is to 'handle' the squeaky wheels who won't go away quietly
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Old 10-31-2009, 10:27 PM   #5
richlevy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stormieweather View Post
There should be a process to dispute the calculation, which may include arbitration and/or mediation by a third party. I'd google and ask around until I figured out what I needed to do, because I would bet cold cash BoA won't tell you up front.
RESPA is the process, which involves sending a letter and waiting. Meanwhile, the advice from the Feds is to pay the disputed amount. While that may work if the dispute is over a few hundred dollars, it isn't a good idea for such a large error.

I did put my complaint into Twitter (I just can't use the term 'tweet') just in case someone is listening.
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Old 10-31-2009, 10:57 PM   #6
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You should have put Bank of America in the thread title, so google would pick it up.
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Old 11-01-2009, 06:36 AM   #7
Radar
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I'd send in your regular mortgage payment for the next few months and that should get their attention. I'm sure they'll call you to find out what's going on. Then you can explain that THEY made a mistake, and you aren't going to pay for THEIR mistake.
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Old 11-01-2009, 09:17 AM   #8
richlevy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Radar View Post
I'd send in your regular mortgage payment for the next few months and that should get their attention. I'm sure they'll call you to find out what's going on. Then you can explain that THEY made a mistake, and you aren't going to pay for THEIR mistake.
Since I actually have a bit of equity in my house, that doesn't sound like a safe option. I don't want to end up like those people who the banks mistakenly foreclosed upon, forced to sue for damages.
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Old 11-01-2009, 08:37 PM   #9
Major Matt Mason
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Frankly, BoA sucks rocks. I got nailed for four overdrafts, totalling about $20. The price for this? $140. Even talking to the branch manager only managed to eliminate one overdraft...

I'm looking for a nice, small local bank now.

-MMM-
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Old 11-01-2009, 10:02 PM   #10
Clodfobble
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One that will let you spend money you don't have with no consequences?
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Old 11-01-2009, 10:21 PM   #11
richlevy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clodfobble View Post
One that will let you spend money you don't have with no consequences?
Banks can generate an overdraft simply by timing the way that they receive deposits. If they post the deposits last, say a payroll check, and post any checks the customer wrote first, they can generate overdrafts on all of the checks, even though the money to cover the checks was deposited on the same day.

They can also generate multiple overdrafts instead of a single overdraft by processing the largest check first.

Example: A customer has $100 in an account and has written 3 checks for $25, $55, and $105 dollars. If the bank processed the two smaller checks first, there would be a single overdraft of $80 generating a single $35 overdraft fee. If the bank processes the largest check first, there would be three overdrafts totaling $80 generating $105 in overdraft fees.

Quote:
JPMorgan Chase (JPM, Fortune 500) will start processing and clearing expenses in the order the purchases were made, chronologically, instead of biggest to smallest, which can deplete bank balance sheets faster and lead to more fees.
Legislation is being drafted to regulate these practices.
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Old 11-01-2009, 11:00 PM   #12
Clodfobble
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Sure, they're a bunch of jerks, no argument there. I've never heard of anyone having a positive experience with Bank of America, not once.
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Old 11-02-2009, 06:46 AM   #13
joelnwil
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I agree that BAC is not a good place to do business. I refinanced my mortgage with them, replacing them with Schwab. I got a lower rate, and I have been very pleased with Schwab, for trading stocks, having a checking account, and having a mortgage.

NO ATM FEES AT SCHWAB, and you can use any ATM.
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Old 11-02-2009, 12:51 PM   #14
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My dad also just went through hell with Bank of America because of their blind idiocy. Sounds like they are on a rampage of stupidity.
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Old 11-02-2009, 08:15 PM   #15
richlevy
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Well my wife finally talked to someone who was able to resolve the issue - sort of. It seems that the woman agrees the taxes are wrong. However, they miscalculated the original escrow at closing and gave us too much money back and now want us to pay extra to replenish the account.

We have enough equity that we do not need to have BofA maintain and escrow. The woman agrees we can drop it, but warned us to let them finish the existing paperwork before we introduce another variable into the equation.
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I have always believed that hope is that stubborn thing inside us that insists, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that something better awaits us so long as we have the courage to keep reaching, to keep working, to keep fighting. -- Barack Hussein Obama
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