Monday, January 10, 2011

NACA and My Mortgage - Three Months Later

Final update at end of post...

Some may recall when NACA came to Sacramento in October to help people with their mortgages. It took place over five days at Cal Expo and had thousands of people seeking help. I was one of them and I wrote about the experience here.

At the time, I was pleased with how it all turned out. They were going to give me fixed rates on my two loans instead of the adjustable I had. My friend also went and was supposed to get a deal on hers as well.

And now we are here in January, three months after the October 11th posting. What has happened? Did I get what they promised? Someone had commented on my October post that they heard that one thing happens at the NACA event and then later when you get the final paperwork it's the 'ol switcheroo, bait and switch.

Honestly, it's still being worked on! In fact, there's a chance my deal has fallen through and my file is closed - not due to me!

And there are more lessons here for people nationwide who are looking into using NACA for mortgage help, so listen up!

By late November I was wondering what was going on. I finally was told I was supposed to be keeping track on my own personal NACA file page on their website. Nice they told me. I find out that they are requesting more paperwork but that I'm not supposed to fax the bank, I'm supposed to fax it with a NACA cover sheet into the NACA system which is linked to the bank. It turns out I had to do this a couple of times. This was also a similar pattern for my friend, who was dealing with a different bank.

Finally, in the first week of December, I get a call from the bank saying the paperwork has been FedExed to me for final signing. The guy said that after he mailed it, he realized I have two different names. My mortgage was in my old married name but I had changed back to my maiden name a few years ago. He said he needed to send it over to another department to change my name and then they would send me new docs. I could review what they sent me, but those were no good with the wrong name, so I could toss them. He had also given me his direct phone extension to check in.

The terms on the paperwork were everything we had agreed on and so I was happy. I just needed the corrected docs. About a week later I get a letter requesting further identification proof. I mailed it the very next day. That was a month ago.

Last week I called and left a couple of messages. It had been three weeks since I sent the requested proof of identification. No returned calls. Then on Thursday I decide to check my NACA page to discover that the bank lady assigned to my file had closed my file saying that I had not responded to the December documents in time and so the deal had expired! What?!?!?

I frantically call and leave a message on the number I was given. I send an email via the NACA portal explaining that this is wrong since I'm waiting on new paperwork with name change. Finally I call a NACA rep and explain the situation.

NACA tells me that EVERYTHING that I do with this process needs to be documented on the NACA website. So I was supposed to have made a note on my NACA page about the name change issue, the paperwork I sent with scanned copies, etc. Nice they told me! Besides, why isn't the bank  person on the other end also making notations that he sent my  file for name change? Why should it all be on my shoulders?

The NACA rep sent my case for escalation and that's where I stand right now. I did everything I was asked to do by the bank. It's not my fault the left hand doesn't tell the right hand what they are doing and vice versa!

Meanwhile I wonder if I've lost that sweet 3.125% interest rate because of this mess. Stay tuned.

Final update 
The good: I got the 1st fixed at the 3.125%. The bad: They reneged on the promise to do my 2nd as well. It took months and was a pain in the ass and they totally bailed on the deal that was made the day of the event in October. So I'm pursuing a different route. Pershaps if that works out I will post it.
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