HomEq Servicing Corporation failed to pay the property taxes on one of my (former) two lots. We found out when the property was listed for a pending tax sale. Upon contacting HomEq multiple times over the course of a month, I had no recourse but to pay the back taxes, interest and penalties. Only after that was satisfied, HomEq had the mortgage rerecorded to include both properties.
I attempted to refinance the loan after complaints with the BBB went nowhere. I (stupidly) took the word of a mortgage broker I was working with and missed a payment, as he told me that we were closing soon & making the payment would cause him to reorder the payoff. Long story short, we never closed & I was behind two payments. (I did file a complaint with the Indiana Secretary of State about the broker, and his office was put on a "watch list"; small consolation...)
I contacted HomEq about bringing the mortgage current & was set up on a payment plan which amounted to 1-1/2 times my normal payment for eight months. After making the payments as required for several months, I found I could not pay other obligations, so I filed Chapter 7 Bankruptcy with the intent of saving my home. I filed the requisite schedules stating my intentions with the court & continued to make my house payments as scheduled.
After the court's Meeting of the Creditors (which HomEq failed to attend), I started contacting them about reaffirming the loan. After weeks of being handed off on the phone to departments that couldn't (or wouldn't) give me a straight answer, I was finally told to contact the law firm that handles their bankruptcies. Upon contacting the firm of Rosicki & Rosicki, they informed me they had no knowledge of my account and referred me back to HomEq.
After another week or more of disastrous phone calls, I was once again referred to Rosicki & Rosicki; this time I was able to secure a contact name and e-mail. I forwarded the attorney the court-supplied reaffirmation agreement for him to fill in, noting the urgency of the situation. Sufficient time had elapsed that my bankruptcy was soon to be discharged, and I wanted to file the reaffirmation quickly.
Lo and behold, I was finally answered by the attorney, after repeated e-mails and phone calls, that HomEq refused to reaffirm the loan. He referred me to HomEq's bankruptcy departement, which I promptly called. The CSR I spoke with told me that it was HomEq's policy not to reaffirm with pro se filers. When I asked her what my current options were, she told me I could continue to make my regularly scheduled payments with no adverse effects. I requested to begin receiving monthly statements, as they had been suspended during the bankruptcy, and she told me once the bankruptcy was discharged, I would begin receiving statements again.
The bankruptcy was discharged within two weeks. When I received the discharge from the court, I contacted HomEq and again requested a statement; I was assured I would receive one. After no contact for two weeks, I phoned again. This time I was told I needed to make the request in writing & they would forward me the form. When I received the form, I filled it out & remitted it the same day. Still no statement.
Further phone calls, further runaround. I mailed another request & faxed one, to no avail. What I did receive from them was a collection letter, requesting an amount equal to three times my normal payment, with the threat of acceleration and foreclosure as an added bonus. When I contacted them about the letter, I was told the amount listed would bring my account current & that when the payment was received, my statements would again be mailed.
I complied with their request, although it took me two weeks to secure the funds. I phoned in the payment, again as requested. Within three days, I received another collection letter, 25% higher than the original amount (but no statement). When I called again, I was told that some of my previous payment had been applied to corporate advances, property preservation fees, etc. & only two months payments had been applied. The balance was held in a suspense account, pending further disbursement.
When I inquired as to what the new magic number was to bring my account current, I was supplied with a figure that, when added to the amount in suspense, would bring me current. Again I complied, although this time I mailed the payment in (big mistake). It took them three weeks to post the payment which just happened to be four days past the date they had given me to initiate foreclosure proceedings. To add insult to injury, they misapplied the payment, which took me another two weeks of daily phone calls to correct.
By this time, I had been contacted by their foreclosure attorneys; I was so fed up with their seeming indifference to the situation, I retained counsel and fought the foreclosure. Certainly the court system would afford me some amount of justice, right?
Wrong. Regardless of the fact they billed me for fees they never documented, misapplied payments, the suspense account, etc., the court looked upon it as "black letter law". There was a mortgage for which I hadn't payed as agreed, and it was within HomEq's legal rights not to reaffirm the loan and foreclose the property. When all was said and done, I owed them $7,500 more than I originally borrowed - in addition to the three years of payments I had made & my attorney's fees.
A Sheriff's Sale was scheduled for the property two months after the judgement. Interestingly enough, HomEq's name didn't show up on any of the court documents. I was sued by LaSalle Bank as Trustee of the note, so I contacted LaSalle; I sent letters to the president, CEO and Chairman of the Board with a request to rewrite the loan for the judgement amount. An identical letter was sent to HomEq, with the same request.
Within two weeks, I was contacted by LaSalle Bank & was told they'd never heard of me, did not hold the note, and had no interest in the property. I requested, and received, that information in writing, which I immediately forwarded to my attorney. He filed a motion to dismiss, based on new evidence: the Sheriff's Sale was stayed (three days prior to the sale) and a hearing was scheduled.
At the hearing, HomEq's attorneys presented their case, complete with an affidavit from a VP, that the mortgage business is very complicated. They made the assertion that I had contacted a local branch, who, in turn, forwarded me the denial letter. Believe it or not, the judge again sided with HomEq.
A second Sheriff's Sale was then scheduled in another two months. I again contacted LaSalle Bank and was forwarded to a different department who told me that yes, LaSalle Bank was the trustee of the Mortgage Backed Security. I was told they would contact HomEq on my behalf and that they would assist in resolving the dispute. The next day they informed me that they had discussed the account with HomEq & I was directed to write a letter to their Account Research Center & copy their attorneys, as well as LaSalle Bank.
This I did immediately, as the Sheriff's Sale was again drawing near. Upon not hearing from HomEq (small wonder), I began making arrangements to secure other accomodations. Further contact with LaSalle proved fruitless, as they told me they had done everything they could as trustee, and it was up to HomEq to respond.
Three days before the sale, I contacted the Sheriff to confirm the house was still included, and much to my surprise, they told me it wasn't. All they could tell me was that they were contacted to remove the property from the sale (of course, no one was obligated to contact me).
Two months later, I received the response from their "Account Research Center". It was laughable that they had taken three months to research my account and had not gotten one fact correct. Not to mention the fact that the first and last paragraphs of their correspondence were nearly incomprehensible with misspellings (spellcheck?). By this time, we had given up hope of reconciling the situation and had moved out of the house. The whole ordeal has caused irreparable harm to my family life, particularly with the constant threat of forcible eviction.
I did respond to their findings, including multiple associated documents to dispute their "findings", but I don't expect much to come of that either. I've contacted several attorneys with the hope of initiating or joining a class action suit against HomEq, but have had little success to date. I must admit, I haven't been particularly adamant about it of late, what with the move to a home less than half the size of our previous one.
If you've read this much, I implore you not to get involved with HomEq. If you already are, refinance, even if it means paying a prepayment penalty. I've been in touch with too many people with similar complaints about them, most of whom lost their homes as well.
If there are any law firms out considering, or in the process of initiating a class action suit and you feel my case has any merit whatsoever, please contact me.
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