Lately, many homes around our older neighborhood have sold. Could this be a sign that home sales are on the rise or is there a grim reality that business scams are on the rise to trick vulnerable home owners faced with foreclosures into trusting one broker's advice and having another associated brokerage out-and-out "steal" their home thru their planned associations with bank officers, lawyers and investors?
We have lived in our home near Fullerton, north Orange County for the over 15 years. Last week, our home was foreclosed through fraud, deceit, betrayal of fiduciary trust and duplicity by Bank of America, real estate brokers and lawyers. Please protect us all from these business opportunists illegally preying on unfortunate citizens and seniors at our most vulnerable moment?
Six months ago on January, we received notice that our home will be auctioned for the past due amount of $55,000. We were confident that we could raise the money and as Alnesha Tanner of Bank of America said, they wanted to help us keep our home and sent us the Making Home Affordable package -for us to fill out, which we did and mailed using the pre-paid Fedex envelope. We had previously applied to Request for Mortgage Assistance (RMA) but was denied because we were out of work.
This time we started a small business and was making around $2,000 a month and we keep receiving flyers about $4,000 monthly mortgage payments reduced to under $1,500 with 2% or less interest rates. We knew that we would be able to make our mortgage payments.
We called Bank of America to inquire about the RMA but they denied receiving the package. By the end of February, we received a letter from Daisy Trans of Bank of America introducing herself as our ustomer Relationship Manager. She sounded very sincere and will try her very best to help us keep our home.
She would postpone the auction date and ordered another reinstatement amount. The reinstatement amount had increased by $23,739 to $79,345. Filling out the RMA application took two weeks as the package requirement was similar to applying for a home loan. Nevertheless, we were elated that our monthly income had gone up to around $3,000 a month; we were sure that we would not be denied.
We completed the second RMA and sent it by Fax and Fedex on April 12 along with a letter complaining about the $23,739 increase. We never got a response from Daisy Tran of Bank of America. Towards the end of May, 2012 and after five months of trying to get Bank of America to consider our RMA, we called Daisy Tran who told us that we were denied and were in trouble of foreclosure. She added that our only option was to pay the reinstatement amount or consider a Short Sale. We asked how much was the amount and she replied that she would order another reinstatement amount and that it will take up to 10 days.
By this time, we would still be able to reinstate the loan with funds that we were able to raise but were worried that our funds would not cover the new reinstatement amount. We started to consider a Short Sale and began our search for good real estate brokers.
Among all mail solicitations, we were very impressed at reading the booklet "Are you in Foreclosure? - Know your Options" by William S. Lee & Associates. On May 30, we met with the Samuel Kim, Vice President/Managing Director/Broker and co-author of the booklet. He was very knowledgeable with indefinitely prolonging the foreclosure process through their full service associations with Lawyers and paralegals. We were confident that they were the best qualified to help us retain our home. Samuel Kim promised to call in one week; but he never did.
By June 9, we received the reinstatement amount of $85,386. We did not have this kind of money. We decided to use Prudential California with offices closer to home to Short Sale list the house. We also decided to go out of town to get help raising additional funds to cover the reinstatement amount. On June 12, we called Daisy Tran to let her know that we are placing the property on Short Sale. She gave the Bank of America Short Sale Customer Care Department phone number (866) 880-1232 for assistance.
We were worried but continued to be confident that Prudential California would get offers and halt the foreclosure auction set for Noon on Monday, June 18, 2012. Joe of Bank of America Short Sale department was very helpful. He mentioned that it could take 4 months to find a buyer. We could also be eligible for $2,500 for relocation as long as guidelines are met. There were difficulties adding our listing agent into the Bank of America Short Sale Equator system, so Armando from Bank of America was successful in manually adding our listing agent by 1:19 PM on June 12. We were told that a Bank of America Worker will contact us to discuss our eligibility in the Making Home Affordable program or we can call 800-669-6650.
June 12 - 2:32 PM, we received a forwarded email from Bank of America that our listing agent was selected and that Bank of America required the agent to accept the assignment.
June 12 - 5:07 PM, we received another forwarded email from Bank of America stating: ACTION REQUIRED: The homeowner is eligible for the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative (HAFA) program. Please have the homeowner call (866) 880-1232 as soon as possible to discuss participation in the program and avoid any delays to the transaction.
June 14 - 3:02 PM, We signed the Bank of America "Short Sale Third-Party Authorization Form" authorizing two Prudential agents as our Designated Representatives.
June 15, after having listed the property in the MLS, Prudential received 4 offers and 100 phone inquiries. We were advised by our agent that because of the short time left to submit the short sale package, Bank of America may go ahead with the foreclosure this Monday.
I immediately called Samuel Kim of William S. Lee & Associates (Real estate brokers/Legal Advisor) also known as Coldwell Banker Best Realty to request for his legal contact to stop the foreclosure on the day of the auction. He said that he would help and apologized for not calling us as promised in our meeting on 05/30/2012.
June 15 - At 2:44 PM, I Received email letter and package from Kelly Padilla, Director, Lender Services of William S. Lee & Associates:
Hello Mr. xxxx,
Sam has asked that I request the below documents in order to proceed to the next step of processing your shortsale. Please read below for any specific instructions pertaining to the forms. These Items are attached and you will need to print, fill out, sign where indicated, and return:
RMA Form- Execute completely, Enter zero "0" for blank amounts (Not a dash). Please fill out the Monthly Income portion to the best of your knowledge. Please sign where indicated. BAC Short Sale Addendum . Please sign where indicated.
IRS 4506T form (attached) must mirror the 2010 Tax Return. Please sign where indicated. Third Party Authorization Form - BAC Standard Document. Please sign where indicated. Listing Agreement Financial Analysis Form Property Questionnaire These items I will need you to collect and forward to me copies: A utility (water/sewer/electric) bill within the last 12 months reflecting the seller's name and the subject property address The 2010 & 2009 tax returns The two most recent bank statements
The two most recent paystubs
Director, Lender Services
William S. Lee & Associates
4130 W. Commonwealth Ave.
Fullerton, CA 92833
June 15 -Sat 5:26 PM We got in touch with Sam Kim to acknowledge the package that he sent. He added that his associate can postpone the foreclosure auction of 06/18/2012 Monday at 12:00 Noon. He told me to transfer $1,000 to his legal associate Francisco Reza who will go to the courthouse to file trustee sale action and effect the postponement of the auction. He stated that Francisco Reza will be sending a fax message with instructions for the money transfer. We never received the fax message as promised.
Note that we decided not to change Listing Agents as it will take more than two days to complete the questionnaire and risk the property going into foreclosure. However, we looked forward to receiving Francisco Reza's money transfer instructions to halt Monday's 06/18/2012 12:00 Noon foreclosure process.
June 16 -Sat 10.13 AM Our Prudential Agent contacted us that he was trying to upload 4 offers to Bank of America EQUATOR system but cannot complete the transaction. The signed and accepted the offer by the buyer SAWADA. The error message was that the property was assigned to another agent. This information was provided by Chester of Bank of America Equator System.
June 16 -Sat 10:35 AM. We were able to reach Kerri of BOFA. We were notified that another agent by the name of Won Lee was assigned. In trying to figure out who is "WON LEE", we looked through the papers attached in the William S. Lee & Associates folder package, and found a blank "Bank of America - Short Sale Third-Party Authorization Form" with the typewritten name of WON S. LEE as the Designated Representative. We never signed this document or authorized Won S. Lee to represent us.
We called Bank of America Short Sale Department on a three way call with Our Prudential Listing agent. BOFA Equator corrected the problem by restoring Our Prudential Agent as our designated representative.
June 16 - Sat 11.49 AM. We sent a text message to Samuel Kim, Broker/Managing Director for William S. Lee Associates with the following text: "Sam, I did not get Reza's instructions. My family is helping me and designated another realtor to help at this time. I apologize for asking you to back off at this time. Thanks for your help."
June 16 - Mon 01.03 PM Received Our Prudential Agent TEXT: Doc submitted
June 16 - Sat 2.49 PM from Sam Kim TEXT: Ok no problem. Let me know.
June 16 - Sat 9:31 PM Received email from Our Prudential Agent regarding the MLS listing
Attached is for your info and file. I have changed the status from Active to Pending since we have five offers and 100 calls"
June 18 - Mon 09.40 AM Francisco Reza called 949.734.5660 but we missed the call.
June 18 - Mon 10.12 AM SAM KIM 714.882.0424 called and left a message that the sale has been postponed.
"Hey xxx, this is Sam. Its Monday morning. I did show that the sale has been postponed. Give me a call 714.882.0424 and then I can discuss with you going moving forward. I am not sure if you had a chance to speak with Francisco. But he has been trying to reach you. But I guess it doesn't matter now. But give me a call xxx. Thank you"
June 18 - Mon 10.22 AM Our Prudential Agent called to say that our Equator Short Sale transaction had disappeared - He suggested to start the bankruptcy process to halt the auction sale.
"Hi xxx, I was just working this morning and looks like the transaction we put in on Saturday for the second time got rejected out of the system. Just disappeared and we cannot find it anywhere in the Equator system. I'm not sure why. We are trying to contact the expeditor with Equator to find out what's going on. I think maybe what you need to do here is to start the bankruptcy process to halt the sale. I'm sorry I can't explain what's happening, we've done everything we could and it hasn't happened. I'm sorry for the bad news. Give me a call if you have any questions".
June 18 - Mon 11:06 AM We called Daisy of BOFA and left a message explaining the problem. But she did not answer the phone call.
June 18 - 11:23 AM Received email from the second Prudential agent:
I called the trustee this morning along with Bank of America and it appears foreclosure is still scheduled. Here is the sale information:
Recon trust 800-281-8219 TS# 11-0145496
Also, I sent an email to the escalations department and my contact doesn't think a postponement is likely this close to the auction. It appears Bank of America has made the account unavailable in Equator for a 2nd time. This is likely a tactic to take the home to foreclosure.
Bank of America's foreclosure department's number is 800-669-6650. You may call them to see if anything can be done. They have removed my authorization along with John's on this loan.
You can also check with your attorney if it's too late to file for a PI.
June 18 - Mon 5.25p After the Auction, Daisy Tran of Bank of America called and left a message that she was available at 1800-669-6650 Monday thru Thursday 10.30 am to 9pm EST. We missed this call.
June 18 - Mon 5:25 PM Received this forwarded email by Our Prudential Agent Email from the buyer's agent Jamie Yang sent 6/18 1:42 PM
My investor purchased this property. Please let your seller knows about what is going on and we are posting 3 days notice on this property. Please ask your seller to givve me a call regarding a moving date. Please take care of MLS status. If you can give me a call. 714.870.2020
Certified Women Owned Business (wbenc) / Certified Minority Owned Business (SCMBDC)
06/19/2012 Tue 11:28 AM Called Daisy Tran: to get an explanation of the unauthorized sale. After all I was HAFA eligible according to Bank of America.
Was the property conveyed? Yes
According to Elbert of BOFA, record shows the file was closed on 17th. Foreclosure process started on 6/12 and ended on 6/17
Transferred to foreclosure dept. 800-669-6650
Will check REO dept. 866-781-0029
06/19/2012 Tue 12:10 Alan of BOFA 866-781-0029 advised to Call county recorder office for new owner
06/19/2012 Tue 5:00 PM There was a LOUD Knock on our front door. Opening the door, we found the following notice taped to the door.
THREE DAY NOTICE TO QUIT (Foreclosure Holdover - C.C.P. 1161a)
TO: xxxxxxx & ALL OCCUPANTS and does 1 to 10 inclusive, all occupants and any other persons in possession of the premises known as: xxxxxxxxx address xxxxxxx
PLEASE TAKE NOTICE THAT WITHIN THREE (3) DAYS after the service on you of this notice, you are hereby required to quit, vacate, remove, surrender and deliver up possession of the above described premises to the undersigned who is authorized to receive same. If you fail to quit possession of the premises within the three (3) days allowed by law, the undersigned will institute legal proceedings against you to recover possession of said premises, recover holdover damages, treble and statutory damages and the cost of the suit.
THIS NOTICE is given pursuant to Section 1161a of the California Code of Civil Procedure. You are hereby notified that a negative credit report reflecting on your credit record may be submitted to a credit reporting agency if you fail to fulfill the terms of your credit or legal obligations.
Dated this 18th day of JUNE, 2012
Five Days after the foreclosure of our home we find the following:
1. Daisy Tran never referred me to Nicole Roman, specialist assigned to Loan Modification 1-866-813-0611 so I could follow up. They conveniently threw away my RMA.
2. Their last minute erroneous information provided an hour before the scheduled foreclosure auction by their Broker/VP and Managing Director Samuel Kim was not of a fiduciary nature but rather, false hope when he left a voice mail message stating: "Hey xxx, this is Sam. Its Monday morning. I did show that the sale has been postponed. Give me a call 714.882.0424 and then I can discuss with you going moving forward. I am not sure if you had a chance to speak with Francisco (Lawyer). But he has been trying to reach you. But I guess it doesn't matter now. But give me a call xxx. Thank you". This is clearly an inexcusable and vicious ploy to sway us from seeking legal action to postpone the foreclosure and getting some assistance monies from a short sale.
3. On our visit with Samuel Kim, he provided us with Bank of America direct CEO numbers (704) 386-5681 and (704) 386-5972. Are these the Bank of America officers capable of ordering the deletion of our Equator Short Sale Data? He also told us that August will be the short sale date and October 15 will be the next auction date. We would be eligible for a $30,000 promo. Currently, William S. Lee & Associates has raised the offer to $35,000 promo.
4. Foreclosure attorneys stated the following horrific facts:
Bank of America bought our property at 10 cents to the dollar or about $60,000 from Countrywide.
Bank of America never intended to modify our loan.
Bank of America had sold our home months ago.
The statement by Elbert of Bank of America on our phone call on Tuesday, June 19 at 11:28 AM proves our suspicion when he said that the file was closed on 6/17. The foreclosure process started on 6/12 and ended on 6/17. When Bank of America realized that we were capable of reinstating the loan, they moved fast to destroy the evidence.
Do you believe that there is evidence of an inexcusable and vicious ploy to sway us from seeking legal action to postpone the foreclosure and getting some assistance monies from a short sale?
Do you believe that a conspiracy between Bank of America and others exist to defraud and take away our rights to hold on to our property by loan modification and even short sale?
If you do not, and DO NOTHING then please beware because someone close to you will soon fall victim to this scam. The banks get a bail out and they and their "ASSOCIATES" keep the money and our properties.
ADDITIONAL RESEARCH FACTS PROVIDED BY FRIENDS:
William S. Lee & Associates (Real estate brokers) otherwise known as COLDWELL BANKER BEST REALTY and Tim McFarlin, LLP (law firm), through false advertising, improper business associations between lawyers and non-lawyers have been unlawfully practicing law. These are documented on the William S. Lee websites.
Refer to Website links and marketing claims:
By They also have team members showing that they are lawyers or owners of a law firm called McFarlin & Schmidt, LLP. See the following from the website:
Raymond J. Seo - Attorney at Law, Bankruptcy
FALSE CLAIM: They do not have "over 300 distressed property transactions" - there is no evidence to back this up anywhere. In fact, on the next page of the website, they actually state that this number is "combined successful transaction from McFarlin & Schmidt, LLP." That's a law firm. And this brokerage is somehow taking credit for transactions completed by a lawyer. This claim is included in ALL mail solicitations from William S. Lee & Associates. There is also evidence here of possible capping and running.
Website link and marketing pitch:
CASH SELLER INCENTIVES
Up to $35,000 CASH! That's right! Our clients are receiving large cash incentives for successfully short selling their homes. In an effort to expedite the short sale process, major lenders have recently awarded several of our clients as much as $35,000 for the successful closing of their short sales.
But wait, there's more; our clients are guaranteed to receive a minimum cash incentive of $3,000 or, 1% of the sales price of the home (whichever is higher) when you short sell with us. If we don't get you the money directly from your lender, we will pay you from our earned commission!
That's right! Our clients are guaranteed to receive a minimum cash incentive of $3,000 or, 1% of the sales price (whichever is higher) when you short sell your home with us. If we don't get you the money directly from your lender, we will pay you from our earned commission!
When entering into a Short Sale transaction managed by the WSL Team, you are guaranteed to receive a seller incentive equal to 1% of the sale price upon closing (limited to $9,900 per transaction).
The only qualifications we require are :
that the homeowner has not recently filed bankruptcy and,
there are no more than two "different" lien holders on the property. [[comment: this hints of BANK FRAUD]]
While there are many options available to distressed homeowners, maximizing benefit to our clients is the goal of every solution we recommend. If you would like to explore possible solutions or think you might be a candidate for bankruptcy, please contact us today. Our seasoned bankruptcy attorneys will review your options with you and answer any questions you might have.
Chapter 7 is the most frequently selected kind of bankruptcy for individuals as it is generally the simplest and quickest form of bankruptcy. Note that Chapter 7 does not excuse homeowners from paying the mortgage. A debtor who wants to keep her home must continue to pay the mortgage. It is also very important to note that filing a Chapter 7 petition will not ultimately prevent a bank from foreclosing if payments are delinquent.
Please visit WSL Library to find out if Ch.7 Bankruptcy can save your home.
PROVIDING LEGAL ADVICE, LEGAL SERVICES AND LEGAL SOLICITATION. It is illegal for a non-attorney to solicit for legal clients. The language above is a clear solicitation of bankruptcy clientele. We believe that the real estate agents are fee splitting with the bankruptcy attorney that works out of their office (Raymond J. Seo). Further, the language above is clear: "OUR SEASONED BANKRUPTCY ATTORNEYS" will review your options and answer your questions. This is shown as a service of William S. Lee & Associates.
GOD HELP US!