I bought a house a few years ago with HomEQ and because of my credit score at the time I ended up with 2 loans through them. One for the bulk of the amount and the second for the remaining smaller amount. Unfortunately I had an adjustable rate (of course it would be applied to the larger of the two loans). I knew this upfront so I expected the rate to change after the initial 2 year fixed period.
I have a somewhat unique situation where I get paid once a month and its typically the 3rd week of each month. I work as a government contractor in Iraq and have been here for almost 4 years now and thats just the way my company pays me. I tried to get them to make my payment due after my payday but they said they couldn't do that and it had to be on the 1st of each month.
The only way they said I could fix this problem was to make 2 payments initially so that I was always paying ahead one month and I would never be late or behind. I did this for both accounts on my first payment and everything was fine for about 2 years or so then everything went down hill.
I started receiving letters and late notices stating that I was behind on my house payment. The odd thing about it though was that I was only behind on one of the loans, take a guess which one was behind....you got it...the larger of the two loans. I started making phone calls and talking to everyone I could at HomEQ to fix this problem and since I am in Iraq and they are on the west coast I had to wait until midnight my time to call them. I found out that they had incorrectly applied the second payment on the larger loan to principal instead of applying it as an actual payment.
I had to call them many times to try to fix this and was told every time I called that it would be taken care of and every time it wasn't. They even reported it to the credit agencies which lowered my credit score.
Eventually someone there said it was fixed for good and would be applied correctly and they apologized profusely for the error on their part, I even received a letter from them stating that it was fixed and they went as far as to correct the issue with the credit reporting agencies.
I thought the problem was solved...I was wrong! About a month later I received another letter, this time they added late fees and said I was over 3 payments behind and they also increased my monthly payment. As I said initially I knew the rate was adjustable so I figured it was just a matter of time for them to raise the rate so they could make more money, the only problem with that train of thought is that all the interrest rates have been dropping due to the economy we are currently in.
When I asked them about the rate increase they explained it in terms a college math professor couldn't understand and once again apologized for the mix up with the initial problem and said they would fix it. That was about 3 months ago and in that time they have not only raised my payment again, which is against the written agreement I signed (it states they can only raise it once every 6 months) but I have also received more than 4 letters saying that I am behind on my loan and the amounts increase every letter I get (I get a new letter about every week)...from 2k in the first one to an astronomical $9500 on the most recent letter.
I mentioned before that I am in Iraq and this type of harassment just makes my job that much harder considering I have enough daily stress just with the location of my job and the local environment. I am not the only person who has spoken to them about my situation. I enlisted my grandmothers help via a power of attorney. My grandmother has owned a real estate company for many years and is quite knowledgeable in these types of matters.
She has spoken to them more than I have and is having the same issues with them. The most recent letter I got stated that I am behind almost $9500 + late fees and they are going to foreclose on my home. It goes on from there but I think I have written enough for you to know how they operate.
I know my story isn't much different than many of those out there dealing with them with the possible exception that I am going to pursue legal action against them. Many of the posts I have read involve people who for one reason or another cant financially afford to do this and I completely understand that and am not saying anything negative about them what so ever...Ive been there myself!
If anyone who reads this wants to get involved with me on this please don't hesitate to contact me so we can discuss this. I want to see them shut down and not just slapped on the hand with a ruler for being bad. I am not one to easily give up either so this should prove to be interesting and possibly even fun....
Good luck to all involved with them and for those of you who aren't already... STAY AWAY!
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