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  • Report: #1100572

Complaint Review: Ben Levine/Streamline Commercial Funding

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  • Submitted: Tue, November 19, 2013
  • Updated: Tue, November 19, 2013

  • Reported By: Honest Abe — Alabama
Ben Levine/Streamline Commercial Funding
12 Abba Hillel Street - 16th Floor Ramat Gan-Tel Aviv , Select State/Province Israel

Ben Levine/Streamline Commercial Funding Benjamin J. Levine Ben Levine's and Streamline Commercial Funding Scam Tel Aviv Ramat Gan

*Author of original report: Continued report

*Author of original report: Continued report

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Have known Ben Levine and his so called lending company for several years.  We undertook getting a loan from his scam company earlier this year on a project in Las Vegas. Having paid over those years more than $35,000 in so called "fees" for everything from "translations" to interest on keeping the so called scam offer in force. Above those fees came the cost of a site visit (business class) and a 5 star hotel accommodation. There was always a constant focus on the money rather than our business at hand.  He would do this or that as soon as he had confirmed money in hand or was informed by wire confirmation it was on his way.  

Which should have tipped us off as to his unscrupulous intent since it is similar to what we have run into with other scam artists in the mortgage/loan business.  Keep in mind, Ben Levine doesn't make the actual loans if anything he is just a typical give me some money for nothing broker.  But he is a slick character and has been around for a long time and knows his game well. 

To make sure this transaction on our end was done with meticulous detail we went over everything that was needed several times.  On 8/18/2013 we wanted to understand about the Proof of Funds needed for the Seller.  The response from Mr. Levine was in writing and unequivocable "the POF is clear cut and will meet anyone's scrutiny...Your guy can call the banker to get further verification"  On the 19th of August Mr. Levine again stated in writing "POF will clearly be adequate ... There is additional POF if needed from Israel but there's no chance the other will be disputed".  Again, on 8/26/2013 in writing Mr. Levine stated "Regarding the POF we have several options...way more than enough to satisfy your seller."

In that same communique we wanted to make absolutely sure the definitions within the MAI appraisal we were required to do was precisely what Ben Levine was wanting to have done.  We forwarded the exact language on 9/4/2013 from the MAI appraiser to Ben Levine for his approval of the language so there would be no misunderstanding.  Which Mr. Levine approved of the definition in writing.  

On 9/12/2013 we wrote to Ben Levine to make absolutely sure we were on track.  Since this was a $10 million dollar deal and we had earnest money deposits that if it took too long, the money would go hard.  A potential event Ben Levine was made all too aware of.  In this communique on 9/12/2013 we stated "Ben, As an update on the progress and status:  1.  Should be forwarding next week the executed Purchase and Sales Agreement; 2. Later next week the Summary Numbers from the appraiser; 3. Perhaps the preliminary title work, but that will probably be the next week; 4. The remainder of the funds for you.  After receipt of the above when can we expect a LOC (Letter of Commitment)?  Any further updates on your end as far as a potential site visit date?

Ben Levine responded in writing "Immediately upon receipt of all the aforementioned.  At the very following meeting, Monday, or Thursday, I will present the complete package and get the okay to issue the LOC." On 9/16/2013 Ben Levine added in response to our inquiry about what happens after receipt of the LOC, he stated "Without going into what goes on behind the scenes, once we get the LOC back from you signed which also calls for an opinion of counsel from you attorney as to the legitimacy of the transaction in your jurisdiction it goes to our closing attorney and they (the attorneys) talk to each other from that point".  Which we alerted our real estate attorney too (well known firm) and he was ready to engage in closing the transaction.

On 9/22/2013 we had the summary numbers from the MAI appraiser which did conform to the required amounts that Ben Levine/Streamline needed to move forward on the loan.  The full appraisal would be out in a few weeks and we would forward (continued)


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 11/19/2013 08:29 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Ben-LevineStreamline-Commercial-Funding/Ramat-Gan-Tel-Aviv-Select-StateProvince-52136/Ben-LevineStreamline-Commercial-Funding-Benjamin-J-Levine-Ben-Levines-and-Streamline-C-1100572. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Author of original report

Continued report

AUTHOR: Honest Abe - ()

The day Ben Levine left after the site visit we were informed that the title company would issue an ALTA policy.  Which we advised Ben Levine of (on 10/16/2013), so there was no question regarding the title’s viability.  Keep in mind Ben Levine stated to all of us he was going to put out a summary LOC on Tuesday of the next week after a meeting on Monday.  With no response until 10/24/2013.  This response entailed the first movement of the scheme regarding the “out” in which there was a hint of a “snag” with the local realtors.  Again, using any information gathered from a broker for the use of determining an approval/disapproval  is illegal in the State of Nevada. 

Rather only an MAI appraisal is the legal information document.  A document which Ben Levine had in his possession for more than three weeks.  Nothing was presented, stated or written about any misgivings or problems in the MAI appraisal.  One could conclude it was acceptable in form and substance.  We reiterated to Ben Levine we were running out of time on the earnest money and it going hard and in fact needed to make another substantial deposit.  Of course he knew all of the timing and amount of money at stake since he had the Purchase and Sales Agreement for weeks. 

Ben Levine by now was sporadically communicating and we were supplying information regarding the illegality of the use of brokers opinions.  And he knew very well the position this “new illegal requirement” was putting us in.  Finally after more than 5 weeks we get a “termination letter” from Ben Levine.  Never during the entire process, even when he sat face to face did he suggest the information provided him were less than suitable.  In fact, he represented to all of us he would be getting the POF out on several occasions and didn’t, that after we supplied a list of what we were sending and he said upon receipt he would get the LOC out after the next meeting, and didn’t, stated he was bringing the POF to the site visit and didn’t, represented that after the site visit on the next meeting (the next Monday) he would get a summary LOC to us and loan documents and the final LOC in a few days thereafter…that didn’t happen either.

It comes down to this, we paid thousands of dollars to Ben Levine, he made certain statements and representations which were construed by all that we had a deal and everything was going smoothly.  During the entire time, the movement of the transaction to close was never suspect.  Until it was time for Ben Levine to perform on any level.  He didn’t perform one time or do one thing he said he was going to do except to aggressively pursue the money which he pocketed and get a free expensive plane flight and 5 star accommodation.   When money was needed for him it was, at times intense focus, when it was time for $’s coming our way or even POF materials promised, there was the bob and weave and no performance and time was not important. 

Do not give any money for anything to Ben Levine/Streamline Commercial Funding, do not believe a word he says, he does not perform on any level except to make deposits in his account.  He will milk you out of money and when he feels like there isn’t any more to get and he has to perform, he goes on to the next target.  Beware of this slickster and company.  

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#2 Author of original report

Continued report

AUTHOR: Honest Abe - ()

Which we did forward on 10/02/2013.  We forwarded the Purchase and Sales Agreement, the full MAI Appraisal, the title report and notification of the remaining funds.  We also notified Ben Levine that that was the information needed to move forward on the LOC.  We had our attorney standing by to receive it and to start working on the closing.

He was notified on 10/6/2013 that we were upgrading the preliminary title previously sent to an ALTA policy.  We also again requested the POF for the transaction and discussed his site visit time.  On that same day he wrote back in response regarding the POF that he would talk to an investor about how/what they wanted to send out regarding POF. On 10/7/2013 we again requested an update on the POF which was responded that "I'll have the POF tomorrow and will send it when you give me the green light that our list has been taken care."  Of course what he meant by that is the funds he wanted to have before he would no release it.  Which was sent out the next morning.  We inquired again after the funds were confirmed wired out regarding the POF and again on 10/8/2013.  The response the same day was that he was waiting for authorization to send out.  We inquired again on 10/9/2013 and 10/10/2013 regarding the POF.  The response was he would bring the file with him on the site visit.  Which he did not have or if he did he did not present it to us.

The site visit was on 10/15/2013 which we paid for business class flight of more than $4,000 and he was put up in a 5 star hotel with a view on the Las Vegas Strip.  We had the site visit the next day with our management team sitting down with him and discussing the transaction.  Suddenly out of nowhere a bombshell was dropped.  They needed to have two brokers give their opinion (without any input or knowledge from us) as to the ability to sell the property if there was a default.  In other words, everything including the MAI appraisal and everything we had done up to that point was not the deciding factor.  Only this element was.  We were flabbergasted but being polite we did not say anything regarding this new requirement.

This new requirement is absolutely illegal in the State of Nevada.  Brokers opinions are expressly forbidden to be the determinate of an approval/disapproval of a loan.  Only an MAI appraisal is expressly stated in the law in Nevada to be the determinate of value and market conditions for the approval/disapproval of a loan.  It is explicit, what they were supposedly hinging their decision on was illegal and in fact nonsensical from a business standpoint.  Since the reason the law is there is because of the unreliabiliy and bias of brokers.  Whereas an MAI appraisal have industry standard methodology in determining values.  

Keep in mind, this new "requirement" was out of the blue and it was very "fishy" how it was presented.  Where we couldn't know anything about how it was going to be presented or who it was the two brokers were.  Our project was to make the property into something other than what it was currently designated for.  The appraiser sat down with us and we showed him proof of what we were doing, a broker would have no knowledge of our changing and improvement of the property and its value.  So this was a bogus and illegal situation put into the transacton in order for Ben Levine to walk away with money in hand.  Although the hole in his scheme was that it is illegal to use a brokers opinion to approve/disapprove a loan.

After Ben Levine left, the communication was little of none.  He always was available (especially when money was coming his way) for contact up until he left.  He told all of us he would be meeting on Monday when he got back and a summary on the LOC would be issued early the next week with the actual LOC coming a few days thereafter.  Everyone at the meeting have the same recollection of events  Thereafter excuses became the norm, he was sick, he had a closing, he was traveling where there was less than available communication facilities (although he did email saying the communication facilities were sporadic on a couple of occassions.  But failed to take the same amount of time to give information on status on the transaction.  Knowing we had money going hard and time lines on the transaction). It was obvious to us there wasn't something amiss. (continued)

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