Well it looks like we can save our house.
My wife got an email on Saturday about a Los Angeles workshop at the convention centre about saving your home called ‘Save the Dream Tour’. There were even mortgage servicers there to restructure the loan. The organization that set this up is called Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America, (https://www.naca.com/).
The CEO is Bruce Marks, a self styled ‘bank terrorist’, has made deals with the majority of large and small servicing companies. He’s been able to do this because if they don’t he starts a massive campaign against the company, and the CEO personally, until they give in. They don’t like this. They really don’t like this. When we were listening to the presentation they brought up a slide of the big servicer providers they have deals with, Indymac, our servicer was not listed, so we were a little disappointed, but the presenter then said there were a few more not listed that they had deals with, and just as they came in to LA they had signed a deal with Indymac, so that was very good news.
I should point out that Indymac, Countrywide, etc… are just servicers, not the investors. They are not the ones lending you money, all they do is collect payment, foreclose on you, etc… They are just the ‘servicer’ of the loan.
Indymac has not been good to us. Not at all. Ever since they have had Obama’s Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) available, they have dragged their feet. All the while calling and calling about payments. Their collectors lied to us on a regular basis, saying they hadn’t received the application, then saying it was denied, saying they needed more information (when they had that paperwork), etc… It got so bad we sent off a letter to Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) to see if she could help. She wrote back saying she was willing to go to the regulatory agency that oversees Indymac and see what they could do. So while we were waiting on that we decided to make a complaint to the Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) ourselves. Well apparently Indymac didn’t like that and denied us because we didn’t send all the proper paperwork. OTS sent us a letter saying the same thing. OTS never contacted us directly either, they just went on the word of the servicer. And the servicer is right, we didn’t have all the paperwork in, because since the paperwork you download from their website doesn’t describe everything they tell you they need. But you’ll only find that out after the fact, they don’t call you and tell you what else is needed, and the paperwork online is still has the original set of requirements. So Indymac is playing the game to say they are working with Obama’s HAMP, but not actually doing anything with it.
So this is why we went to the NACA event. They are very aggressive with these servicers and literally do not take no for an answer. Under HAMP they reduce the interest to 2%, bring down the principle of the loan, and in 5 years the interest starts going back up. With NACA what they figure out is how much payment you can afford, then let the servicer decide how they are going to get to that number. That may mean a 4% interest rate with no principle reduction but turning it into a 40 year loan, or it could be a 2% interest rate, principle reduction and a 40 year loan, whatever it takes to get you down to the payment you can afford. The best thing about this is its a permanent change, it will not go up in 5 years. What change they make is permanent.
So we have started our application process, and once that is done we will have a phone consult with one of NACA’s counselors and very quickly after that we should have an idea of where we stand. One good thing going for us is the fact that we are under about $100k in our loan. Our mortgage is about $250k and the house is worth about $150k. They said the lower the house value is the easier it is to get a restructure done, because the investor does not want to lose even more money if they foreclose. So oddly, this is good news. lol
If you are unemployed they will get you on forbearance where you do not have to pay any mortgage for 6 months, and if you’ve found work in the meantime that is when they will work with you get you a loan you can afford. If at the end of the 6 months you still don’t have work, they will put in another 6 months forbearance, as long as it takes for you to get back to work and able to start making payments again. Very cool.
A vile thing happened while we were standing in line. A realtor started handing out a pamphlet with his information on it that stated he has a program to help homeowners as well. What he really means is he wants to make money off of you by short selling your home. He has a ‘free’ seminar where he will convince you this is the best thing for you to do. He was preying on people who are losing their homes. He has zero interest in saving your home, all he wants to do is make a buck. That's pretty vile and pathetic.
Overall I am relieved though. My wife is happy and so is the mother-in-law. A lot less stress is in this house now.
Oh and the brother-in-law’s dog, Norma Jeane, is doing much better and is looking like she will make a full recovery. :)