April 19, 2010
Mr. David B. Lowman
CEO, Home Lending Division
JP Morgan Chase & Co.
270 Park Avenue, 38th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Re: Chase Loan 0*********/OCC Case # 01110250
Dear Mr. Lowman,
I’d like to take you up on your offer made during the House Committee on Financial Services hearing Tuesday April 13, 2010 regarding Financial Mitigation Programs, where you said folks who were not getting answers from Chase regarding a mortgage modification should “come to you”. Since February 24, 2009 I’ve tried to get in front of my financial situation and work with Chase to honor my mortgage obligation by renegotiating the loan. Fourteen months and $66,000 later I can unequivocally state that Chase is not giving answers or loan modifications.
This is my primary and only mortgage; there is no second lien and I have no other debt. I am not underwater in the loan nor do I seek a reduction of principal. I request only a reduction in interest rate to 2% or an extension to a 40-year term at a 3% interest rate.
I am available to meet with you or a designated authorized decision-making loan officer any time for a face-to-face to meeting to work out a plan that will satisfy Chase and allow me to stay in my home. Complete detail of all communication with Chase from February 2009 to date is attached; hard copies & telephone records provided upon request. I can be reached at (***) ***-**** or by e-mail at ********@yahoo.com. I look forward to speaking with you.
cc: Senator Frank Lautenberg; Senator Bob Menendez; Representative Frank LoBiondo; Comptroller of the Currency, Houston, TX; Mr. Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan Chase; Alan Heavens, Philadelphia Inquirer; Ms. Doris B., Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Delaware Valley, Philadelphia, PA
Detailed Timeline of my attempts to get answers from Chase:
February 18, 2009: Mailed Borrower’s Assistance documents to Washington Mutual
February 24, 2009: Phoned WaMu and confirmed the packet had been received. A file would be created, reviewed and checked for missing items. Then, a processor would be assigned. I was advised to call back in 7-10 days.
March 6, 2009 at 9:00 am: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Juan Carolos (sp.). Per Juan, “WaMu is hiring and training people. They are getting about 150 requests a day. As of today’s date it has not yet been assigned.” Juan estimated it would be reviewed by Friday 3/13/09 and suggested I call back then.
March 13, 2009 at 9:20 am: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Margie. Per Margie, it’s “going to be a 97-day turnaround from when the negotiator gets it” and it “should have been assigned.” Margie confirmed that nothing appeared to be missing and could not understand why it hadn’t been assigned; she then gave me a priority number to fax in my 34-page packet, even though it had been received already. When I asked her what a reasonable time frame was to follow-up, she said they would contact me within 48 hours and reconfirmed my cell phone number.
March 13, 2009: Faxed WaMu the 34-page packet that had been submitted by mail and confirmed as received.
48 hours elapsed with no calls from WaMu.
March 17, 2009 at 8:50 am: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Kathy. The paperwork had been received on March 16, 2009 and forwarded to an “opener”. It goes to an opener first and is then assigned to a negotiator; that can take up to seven days (3/26/09). I pressed Kathy on what happened to my original submission, the one I mailed in, because we were losing time and each day counted; she said she would open up a Work Order for the original submission and indicated that once the Work Order was opened, they would contact me within 48 hours. Kathy said the whole process should take 30 to 60 days and that they were averaging 66 days.
48 hours elapsed with no calls from WaMu.
March 20, 2009 at 10:00 am: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Kristen. Per Kristen, “on March 16, 2009, the packet was forwarded to C. Hodges” (an opener) for research and to be assigned. “Escalation is looking into what happened to the 2/24/09 submission.” I will either get a phone call or a letter in the mail regarding more info needed or that they are working on it. Kristen suggested calling in 3/31/09 to follow-up.
March ended with no calls from WaMu.
April 3, 2009 at 11:20 am: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Amber. Per Amber, on 3/31/09 a loss mitigation file was set up and the negotiator (a Stanley Saintil-Deli (sp.) had been assigned and he’d left a note in the account requesting that I provide copies of my last two years of income tax returns and verification of the freelance income I was reporting. She said a letter had been sent to me requesting this information.
No letter was ever received.
April 6, 2009 at 9:00 am: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Kimberly and told her I had spoken with Amber on 4/3/09 and I had still not received a letter telling me where to send the requested documents. Kimberly insisted a letter had been sent and gave me a fax number to submit my documents.
April 7, 2009 at 10:00 am: Faxed WaMu the requested documents.
April 8, 2009 at 8:14 am: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Kyle. I wanted to follow-up on receipt of the fax but per Kyle, they “are swamped” and I must allow WaMu 7-14 business days to receive a fax; I could try calling back on 4/14/09.
April 13, 2009 at 8:49 am: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Kathy. I asked her to verify that a letter had been sent to me and to confirm receipt of the fax. Kathy alleged a letter had been sent via USPS and “the file is still open which means they must have the fax.” She advised it was now taking 79 days from when the negotiator gets it to completion. I asked to speak to the modification officer and was advised she could no longer transfer calls. I then reviewed with Kathy the entire timeline starting with WaMu’s confirmed receipt of the 2/24/09 packet and said I never got a letter acknowledging anything was happening; no one had ever gotten back to me about anything and the only way I knew additional documents were required was by repeated phone calls. I asked if I might get something in writing indicating they were working on my case. She indicated that the file went to the negotiator on 3/31/09 and confirmed my cell phone number as the correct way to reach me. It was not a friendly or productive call.
April 17, 2009 at 3:36 pm: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Paula. Per Paula, they forwarded the faxed info to the negotiators on 4/15/09 and it should take 68 days. Per Paula, the negotiator is still Stanley Saintil-Del (sp.). I should call back every week or two to check on the status.
April 23, 2009 at 9:15 am: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Kathy who said there was “nothing new to report at this time.” The negotiator is working on it and the time frame is now 69 days from 3/31/09.
April 30, 2009 at 1:40 pm: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Kim who asked if I was just checking in on my loan modification today. Per Kim, the timeline does not start until the file is sent to a negotiator and that it would take 76 days from 3/31/09. I asked if there was anything I could do or if there had been any change since 4/15/09 and Kim said it is frustrating and she understands but there was “nothing I could do at this point.”
May 8, 2009 at 12:55 pm: Phoned WaMu and spoke with Amber. Now that they have received the “missing” information, as of 4/15/09 they have 28 business days to assign to a negotiator as the package is now “complete”. It will go to a different negotiator and within the 28 days I will be contacted.
May 20, 2009 at 8:45 am: Phoned WaMu/Chase on and spoke with Julie. She indicated my loan was assigned to modification officer Brandon Upton on 5/13/09 and it would take 77 days from then. Per Julie, no file was opened until 3/31/09 and anything related to my 2/24/09 submission and all prior communications were null and void. Stanley Saintil-Deli (sp.) may have been an “opener”. I will receive a form letter telling me they are looking at the loan and considering my request for a modification.
No letter was ever received.
May 20, 2009 at 3:35 pm: I received a call on my landline, not the cell phone number I had provided to WaMu/Chase as my sole contact telephone number. It was Rich Naylor calling to tell me Brandon Upton is a processor. Rich Naylor was in charge of doing the review and my loan was no longer in Loss Mitigation, it was now in the Imminent Default department. The package was considered incomplete as of 5/13/09 and would not be looked at until all updated and additional material was provided.
Rich directed me to the web site and told me to download the forms and submit all of the requested information. This site featured a Borrower’s Assistance Form with a lengthy checklist. Rich also requested:
– Updated/current utility bills showing proof of residency
– 2 pay stubs or 30 days worth of pay documents
– 2008 income tax returns
– Documentation of all assets
– Recent bank statements
– Profit & Loss Statement
– Monthly Budget
All were to be faxed to the Imminent Default department and should be mailed as well. Upon receipt of all documents, the loan would go to review and then be assigned to an underwriter, after which it would take 30-40 days. WaMu, now Chase wanted a complete resubmission of my loan modification request.
May 26, 2009: I mailed the requested documents (54 pages) to WaMu Imminent Default.
May 29, 2009: I confirmed the packet had been delivered at 8:51 am via Certified Mail.
June 5, 2009 at 9:55 am: Phoned Chase/WaMu and spoke with Hank who had fond memories of vacationing in Avalon, NJ. Hank confirmed my re-submission fax was received on 6/3/09 and that the loan modification clock starts anew. Hank advised there was nothing for me to do but “be patient and pay my mortgage”. The government had changed all the programs in March and the programs change daily; his department had only been established on May 1, 2009. Hank assured me they are working on it and said it was okay to call back and check in every week.
June 12, 2009 at 9:35 am: Phoned Chase/WaMu on and endured a recorded collection message informing me this was an attempt to collect a debt. Note: I had never been late nor had I missed a payment. After the message played I was put on hold for ten minutes when Kim Bryant picked up. Kim’s sole purpose appeared to be to transfer me and introduce me to someone who could answer my questions. I then spoke with Adam who noted I’d called before. Adam confirmed receipt of my 6/3/09 fax and advised that all paperwork was in hand, WaMu had a “complete” package. Adam said I should have an “update” by end of month; it’s taking 20-25 days for an “update”. I pressed him on what an update meant and he said deny, modify, etc.
June 23, 2009 at 10:30 am: Phoned Chase/WaMu on and spoke with Brad who advised that as of 6/15/09 the loan was in the Imminent Default department and I should be calling a different number. Per Brad the loan had been assigned to Brad Upton – I could see this conversation was going nowhere and asked to speak to someone in Imminent Default. I was transferred to Troy who told me the files had been “sent to Guardian to microfiche” and that should take a week. They are taking pictures of documents and basically my loan is still in the review process. There was nothing he could tell me and nothing I could do. Brad was in Loss Mitigation, now I was talking to Imminent Default and they do not share names. Troy terminated the call by hanging up on me.
July 3, 2009 at 9:30 am: Phoned Chase/WaMu on and spoke with Chris. After verifying all of my contact information Chris advised me that my loan modification request was reviewed two days ago and I did not qualify due to the amount of equity I have in the house. I do not meet the interior department guidelines. A letter of denial has been sent and I may certainly re-apply if “my situation changes” or maybe, he said, I ought to consider selling as they are open to a short sale. He then terminated the call.
July 2009 to November 2009: No letter from Chase/WaMu regarding a loan modification application, review or denial ever arrived.
December 10, 2009, 6:45 pm: I called Chase and spoke with Sheila about pursuing a loan modification. I wanted to work out a payment plan that would both satisfy Chase and allow me to keep my home. Sheila advised that on 6/30/09 I’d been denied a loan modification due to “lack of hardship”. I told Sheila I’d never received a denial letter or any other letter of any kind from Chase/WaMu. I asked if she could fax me a copy of the denial letter and was told she could not do so. I persisted and was transferred to Chris in Loss Mitigation. Chris said a letter was sent on 8/25/09 saying I do not qualify for the Making Homes Affordable program as my “equity exceeds loan guidelines”. I asked Chris for a copy of this letter since I’d never received any letters about anything related to my application for a loan modification, in fact, the only evidence I’d even applied for a modification were my own copies, fax confirmations, postage receipts and phone records. I asked Chris if he could fax a copy of the letter. “No”. Could he e-mail a copy of the letter, perhaps a pdf? “No”. I offered to send a stamped, self-addressed envelope so he could send a copy at no cost but was again rebuffed. I told him I really needed a copy of the letter – I wanted to show my congressman. I went on to say I was recording the call (meaning I was taking notes) and he said “then I’m going to have to hang up” and he did.
December 11, 2009, 11:15 am: I went to the Chase site and downloaded the Homeowner’s Information Packet. I submitted another request for a loan modification. I sent a 46 page packet by Priority Mail and paid for Delivery Confirmation: I also faxed the same 46 pages to the fax number provided.
December 14, 2009, 10:40 am: Consumer Credit and Budget Counseling in Marmora, NJ gave me the telephone number for the Chase Home Ownership Center in Media, PA (610) 892-6620.
December 14, 2009, 4:11 pm: I called the Chase Home Ownership Center several times throughout the day but there was no answer, the system was busy, etc. Finally my call to the Chase Home Ownership Center in Media, PA (610) 892-6620 went to a voice mail box. The outbound message stated the hours were Monday – Thursday 10 -7; Friday 9-6 and Saturday 9-1. I left a voice mail with my account number and phone number and said I wanted to make an appointment with a loan officer; I wanted to work out a way to honor my mortgage obligation.
December 15, 2009, 10:15 am: I called the Chase Home Ownership Center in Media, PA (610) 892-6620 and spoke with Roxanne. I requested an appointment with a loan officer and was advised they “can’t help me”. They deal only with people who are 31+ days past due. I need to call “another department” (866) 550-5705 (the number for Customer Service from the Borrower’s Assistance form). I pressed her to make an appointment and she said they were advisors for a loan modification, I MUST be past due! They can’t talk to me!
December 15, 2009, 10:25 am: I needed an advocate so I sought credit counseling. Consumer Credit and Budget Counseling in Marmora, NJ was convenient, but they would only help if I was past due. I called other resources and soon found the agencies were all swamped. The first available appointment I could get anywhere was Tuesday, January 5, 2010 at 9 am, with the Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Delaware Valley in Camden, NJ.
December 15, 2009, 10:34 am: I called Chase (866) 550-5705, the number for Making Homes Affordable and spoke with Stewart who advised “all systems are down”; call back in an hour.
December 15, 2009, 11:45 am: I called Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Jillian. I asked for a copy of the denial letter dated 6/30/09. Jillian could not provide this but she offered to read the content to me and said I was ineligible as the “L.T.V. was less than 80%”. As she read the notes to me she freely admitted she did not understand them. Jillian confirmed Chase had received my new application for a home loan modification on 12/11/09 and that it was with the technical team who was looking to see if all of the required information was there. “This can take a few days or up to two weeks”.
I pressed for more information and was transferred to Mary in Imminent Default. Mary said Chase required a one-line statement that I do not pay condo or homeowner association fees and that line 6 on my tax request form needed completion; she could accept a verbal approval on that but I was to fax the “missing” document and be sure to note my loan number on the document. I again requested a copy of my 6/30/09 denial letter; Mary said she could see an 8/25/09 letter but no 6/30/09 letter – she would send an e-mail to request a copy be re-sent to me. Mary indicated that loan modification reviews were taking 30-60 days and I should follow up every 7-10 business days. We ended the call. I then faxed (866) 282-5682 a one-page document indicating I did not pay condo or homeowners association fees on my home.
December 16, 2009, 11:54 am: I called Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Tony who confirmed Chase had all the necessary documents including the verbal tax form release and the fax about no condo fees. Tony then transferred me to Imminent Default. I spoke with Sandra and again requested a copy of the 6/30/09 or 8/25/09 denial letter. I asked Sandra to read the letters to me and she said I was ineligible due to L.T.V., my “loan to value was too much” and I had “too much” cash reserves (more than three months). Sandra said she’d send the letter again; it should take 7-10 days.
December 17, 2009, 11:30 am: Chase was not going to work with me in the face of “too much equity” but the Chase web site offered attractively low interest rates and encouraged one to refinance. If Chase thought my financial situation was so great, surely they help me to refinance. I called (800)-873-6577 and responded to the prompts. Yes, I was an existing customer and yes I could key in my loan number. I was directed to Cynthia, a debt collector. She did not know why I was sent to her as I was current on the loan. I told her I wanted to refinance. Cynthia said she’d try to send me to the right place and gave me the number (877) 835-3019 just in case. We were disconnected.
I then called (877) 835-3019 and spoke with Kathy, who took my qualifying information “before turning me over to a loan officer”. After taking my information she advised that it would be impossible for me to refinance at this time as Chase was running 90-120 days behind on processing. She couldn’t offer me anything nor would she accept an application from me. In fact, Chase had selected QuickenLoans to handle the massive volume of inquiries they were getting. I was then transferred to QuickenLoans, where I spoke with Bryan, Executive Banker. (480) 346-0551. Bryan reviewed my financial situation and said that based on my salary, he could offer nothing.
December 17, 2009, 2:00 pm: I called Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Customer Care Professional Tammy. Per Tammy, Chase had received all the information and it looks like file is being reviewed. The status is active and still in process. When they make a decision I will be contacted by mail. It’s normally taking 30- 60 days. I asked if my account had been assigned to a negotiator and realized Tammy was clueless. Tammy admitted she could not answer specific questions and would need to transfer me to Imminent Default (888)708-3336. I was transferred and heard the recorded message “We’re sorry, we cannot continue with this call. Please hang up.” I was then disconnected.
December 17, 2009, 2:04 pm: I called Chase Imminent Default (888) 708-3336 and was transferred to debt collection and heard the recorded message: we are “experiencing a high volume of calls and apologize for the wait”. I stayed on hold for 27 minutes with no messaging of any kind other than assorted clicks; finally I decided to hang up.
December 30, 2009, 10:32 am: I called Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Amy. Per Amy there was nothing to report. The loan modification request went to underwriting on 12/15/09 and no additional information was required at this time. It’s running 45-60 days. I then asked again about getting copies of the 6/30/09 and 8/25/09 denial letters. Amy said she couldn’t even “open” or read the 6/30/09 letter as it was “too old”. She could read the 8/25/09 letter; it said I was turned down because my “property equity exceeds program guidelines”. Amy would also check with a supervisor about how I might get a copy.
Amy transferred me to the Imminent Default department as they were processing the past letters so maybe they could provide a copy of the letter(s). I spoke with Oleg in Imminent Default who advised my Chase loan modification was in underwriting. I told him that was not my question and asked for copies of letters. Oleg tried to send me back to Customer Service but I insisted on speaking to a supervisor. Oleg transferred me to Kevin Strubble, whose mailbox was full and not accepting messages. I hung up.
January 5, 2010, 9:00 am: I kept my appointment with the Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Delaware Valley in the Camden, NJ office. My counselor, Doris Berdecia, was extremely professional during our two hour meeting. She said they usually help individuals complete and submit their paperwork – the same paperwork I had already submitted three times! She told me about the Chase Home Ownership Center in Media, PA – I told her I had phoned them on December 15, 2009 and they had refused to speak to me because my mortgage payment was not yet 31 days past due. Doris assured me she would be able to get through to them, and right then proceeded to call her contact Jason Papa at the Chase Home Ownership Center. Jason Papa also stated that he could offer no help until the 31 day delinquent mark, and further informed us that I had “too much equity” in my home. When pressed to clarify what exactly that meant, his reply was, “programs change all the time,” and, “you are back in for loan review so I cannot help you or comment on your loan.” Jason told us to call Chase (866) 550-5705.
Next, Doris and I called the Chase loan modification line (866) 550-5705. We first spoke with Barb and confirmed all paperwork had been received and was in good order, and then asked to be transferred to the Imminent Default Department. After 25 minutes on hold, we were disconnected. We called Imminent Default back on (888) 708-3336, and were again put on hold. After 35 minutes we finally had to disconnect because my two-hour appointment was over!
January 13, 2010, 9:00 am: I called Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Amy who indicated the loan modification application was still in review and Chase was not requesting any additional information at this time. She confirmed it went in on 12/15/09 and that it takes 60 days. I told her I could not make my February payment. She said they could do nothing; they needed to hear back from the loan modification team regarding a decision. I asked again about the copies of the 6/30/09 and 8/25/09 denial letters and was transferred to Imminent Default. I listened to a message that Chase was “experiencing a high volume of calls.” I waited on hold 4 minutes then spoke with Jeannine. She offered to e-mail a request to her supervisor that copies of the letter(s) be sent. I said this was the third request; I needed to speak with a supervisor. She said his name was Jason Coates and he was not in, she would send him a message to call me on my cell phone and confirmed the number.
January 15, 2010: I received a letter dated January 12, 2010 from Chase Home Finance. Jacqueline Ham, a Home Lending Executive Office Analyst in the Home Lending Executive Office, indicating she was “investigating” the issue.
January 20, 2010, 10:15 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham in response to the January 12, 2010 letter and left a voice mail.
January 21, 2010, 9:50 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham again in response to the January 12, 2010 letter; her voice mail was full and not accepting messages.
January 22, 2010, 11:45 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham in response to the January 12, 2010 letter and left a voice mail.
January 20, 2010, 11:47 am: Phoned Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Mindy who verified all information and advised the loan was currently “under review”; all paperwork was in place. Mindy offered to transfer me to Imminent Default. I said yes, and was put on hold after hearing “Your call will be answered by next available representative. We are experiencing a high call volume…” after 20 minutes on hold I listened to another “this is an attempt to collect a debt” announcement and then spoke with John who told me that on 12/15/09 the loan was put in underwriting review status. No final decision had been made and at this point it was taking 30-60 days; I should check back once a week. I told him I could not make the February payment and I needed answers. He said he appreciated my honesty but I just needed to wait for an answer.
January 27, 2010, 11:35 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham in response to the January 12, 2010 letter and left a voice mail.
January 28, 2010, 8:35 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham in response to the January 12, 2010 letter and left a voice mail.
January 28, 2010, 3:45 pm: Jacqueline Ham phoned me. We discussed what it meant to be denied a modification for “too much” equity and how I might get a copy of my denial letters. Jacqueline committed to send a letter recapping the 8/25/09 denial based on: property exceeds guidelines/too much equity. Jacqueline said I should call the Chase Home Ownership Center in Media, PA on March 2, 2010 once I was officially 31 days late and try to schedule a March 3, 2010 appointment rather than wait until 3/18/10 as I’d planned. I asked her what the guidelines were regarding “too much equity”. Was it a dollar amount or a percentage? Because if I had too much equity in 8/09, why would it be any different now? Was there a number one had to be above or below? She said these were good questions; she would ask and get back to me Tuesday 2/2/10 at the latest with answers. I asked what other modification programs there were beyond Obama’s Making Homes Affordable and she said there was only one. She also noted I was still in Loan Review and she asked that it be escalated.
February 2, 2010 9:00 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham to follow up on our January 28, 2010 conversation and get answers on my denial, the equity formula and the status of my modification request. She was not available. I left a detailed voice mail.
February 4, 2010 9:15 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham to follow up on our January 28, 2010 conversation and get answers on my denial, the equity formula and the status of my modification request. She was not available. I left a detailed voice mail.
February 5, 2010 8:30 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham to follow up on our January 28, 2010 conversation and get answers on my denial, the equity formula and the status of my modification request. Her mailbox was full and not accepting messages.
February 5, 2010 11:30 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham to follow up on our January 28, 2010 conversation and get answers on my denial, the equity formula and the status of my modification request. She was not available. I left a detailed voice mail.
February 9, 2010 10:45 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham to follow up on our January 28, 2010 conversation and get answers on my denial, the equity ratios and the status of my modification request. She was not available. I left a detailed voice mail.
February 10, 2010 10:30 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham to follow up on our January 28, 2010 conversation and get answers on my denial, the equity ratios and the status of my modification request. She was not available. I left a detailed voice mail.
February 12, 2010 8:15 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham to follow up on our January 28, 2010 conversation and get answers on my denial, the equity formula and the status of my modification request. She was not available. I left a detailed voice mail.
February 12, 2010 10:00 am: Phoned Chase (866) 550-5705 and was advised my loan was still in review. I asked to be transferred to Imminent Default and was disconnected.
February 12, 2010 3:45 pm: Jacqueline Ham phoned me and advised that loan equity guidelines are based on a percentage and that 30% is the limit for equity. At 30% or even 29% equity, Chase would not modify the loan. She had no status update on my loan modification request.
February 15, 2010, 9:00 am: I had a follow-up appointment with Doris Berdecia at the Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Delaware Valley in the Philadelphia, PA office. (It had been scheduled the week prior but was rescheduled due to snow) We called Chase and confirmed all paperwork was in hand and learned that Tannette McCray was handling my loan. We got her e-mail Tannette.x.McCray@jpmchase.com and asked to speak with her but were denied. Doris updated my file and indicated there was little we could do but wait for an answer from Chase; she asked me to e-mail Tannette and keep her in the loop on my correspondence.
February 23, 2010 1:00 pm: Phoned Jacqueline Ham to follow-up on the status of my loan modification request. Her outbound message indicated she was out of the office 2/18-2/25/10; her mailbox was full and not accepting messages.
February 23, 2010 1:01 pm: Phoned Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Carrie. My loan modification application was still in review. It was with the underwriter and waiting for a BPO (Broker’s Price Order) aka an appraisal. As of 2/19/10, Chase wanted to pull a credit report on me and needed my date of birth; allegedly they had sent a letter requesting this information. I verbally provided my date of birth. Carrie indicated that Tannette McCray was a “processor” then qualified that by saying “that’s just the coding in the computer”. Carrie did not understand why they were pulling a credit report and asked if I wished to be transferred to an analyst. I said yes and that ideally I’d like to speak with Tannette. She indicated that I could ask to speak with her and transferred me. Immediately a message came on “We’re sorry, we cannot continue to process your call” and disconnected me.
No letter was ever received.
February 23, 2010 1:01 pm: Phoned Chase (866) 550-5705 again and spoke with Tony. I reiterated the conversation I’d just had and he said he would transfer me to an analyst. Immediately the same message came on “We’re sorry, but we cannot continue to process your call” and disconnected me.
February 23, 2010 1:05 pm: Phoned Chase (866) 550-5705 yet again and spoke with a different Tony and filled him in on the disconnects and the message. He said he would effect the transfer…and stay on the line until it actually happened. I then spoke with Dwayne who verified he needed my date of birth which I again provided. Dwayne indicated that Chase was going to conduct an “exterior appraisal” and I asked what that meant; he said he thought it was a “drive-by” but he wasn’t certain.
February 25, 2010 8:30 am: Phoned Jacqueline Ham who was to have returned 2/25/10; her mailbox was full and not accepting messages.
February 25, 2010 9:45 am: Phoned Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Nzube. My file had been assigned to a “decision maker” on 2/11/10. Please allow 30 – 60 days. I said this was not acceptable and asked to be transferred to Imminent Default. He said okay and transferred me. Immediately the message came on “We’re sorry, we cannot continue to process your call” and disconnected me.
February 25, 2010 9:49 am: Phoned Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Kewanna. I went through the drill and told her I needed to be transferred to Imminent Default. Shandaia picked up and told me she was unable to give a status update as the modification was with “Lee Escalation”. She indicated that “someone” would phone me back in 72 business hours. When pressed, she indicated the callback would come from the person handling my loan; I asked if that was Tannette McCray and she said yes. I said I wanted to be sure I understood correctly that Tannette McCray would call me back within 72 business hours with a status update and she said yes. Tannette McCray never called me.
February 26, 2010, 2:30 pm: Lisa Walsh from Chase Home Finance called, looking for the February payment. I told Lisa I’d been in constant contact with Chase, as recently as the day before at 10:00 am seeking a loan modification. I shared the content of my conversations including the fact that a credit report was being pulled; BPO requested and I was due a call back in 72 business hours. Lisa concurred these notes were in the file and asked when I could pay. I told her I had promised to make a payment by March 5 but it would be a partial. She said not to bother; a partial payment would just sit in a suspense account and would not be applied until received in full and partial payments might be applied to late fees, etc. Lisa told me to call (800) 848-9380 on or after March 1 and request a Financial Interview. That would calculate all money in and out of the house in order to create a payment plan to bring the debt current. I told her a payment plan was not likely as I could not meet the current mortgage payment. She said in the financial interview to be sure to tell them how much I could have paid in the partial payment. She said given my financial situation and the fact I was already in loan review for a modification, I would be denied for a payment plan and then they would try to put me on a trial or “second” modification program. These are the steps I must go through (interview, denial, etc.) If I can make the new payments for 3 months it might become official. I then asked if this course of events was independent of the modification I had already requested and she said yes.
March 1, 2010, 3:45 pm: On calling the Chase Executive Lending Office I was advised my loan had been reassigned from Jacqueline Ham to Megan Valdivia (Megan.l.Valdivia@chase.com). Per Megan, she (Megan) had all the information required; it appeared I would be denied again as my equity was “too high”. Megan indicated that a Broker’s Price Order (BPO) had been received that day and much depended on what it said.
March 2, 2010, 2:45 pm: I called Megan to follow-up on the BPO; she had no new information.
March 2, 2010, 2:46 pm: I called (800) 848-9380 as Lisa Walsh had suggested scheduling a Financial Interview. I spoke with Rodriguez who had no idea what I talking about; he wanted transfer me but had to check the number. After he verified he had the correct number to transfer me I was put on hold and then the message came on “We’re sorry, but we cannot continue to process your call” and disconnected me.
March 2, 2010, 3:05 pm: Phoned Chase (866) 550-5705 and spoke with Nicole who advised I’d been declined on 3/2/10 due to “lack of hardship”. Nicole connected me to Imminent Default where I spoke with Gene. I told him I’d been advised I was declined due to either “lack of hardship” or “too much equity” and I wanted a confirmation and explanation. He put me on hold and returned to tell me Chase was “unable to verify this was my primary residence”, hence the denial. I asked if I would get a letter regarding this denial and the reasons why, he said yes. I was stunned – Megan had said nothing about my residency; the paperwork submitted (including Federal Income Tax returns) clearly indicates this is my home.
March 3, 2010, 7:45 am: I called Megan and left a voice mail regarding the denial.
March 3, 2010, 8:45 pm: Keisha Hackney phoned looking for payment. She told me I was denied due to “the equity” and that I need to list my home for sale; a modification was not available for me. I should liquidate my assets and pay up; consider a short sale. I will receive a denial letter and a letter with intent to foreclose. I was denied because I have equity and I should have refinanced or pulled all the equity out. I asked if Chase merely serviced the loan and she said no, “this is an asset loan in the portfolio”. I told her I was going to make a payment March 5 but had been advised it would not be applied if a partial payment; she confirmed this. I told her I could commit to a full payment with late fees by April 5, 2010. She told me she would note in the files I “was not able to make a commitment at this time”. I said I was making a commitment but she would not hear of it. I ended the call.
March 4, 2010, 10:45 am: I called Megan again and she told me she had “no record of a denial” although there “may be a question as to my residency”. Megan indicated I should only call her; if I called the Customer Service line I would get conflicting information. I offered to provide additional information to verify my residence but she said to wait.
March 11, 2010, 8:45 am: I called to follow-up; Megan was not in so I left a voice mail regarding the BPO and my residency status.
March 15, 2010, 8:30 am: I called again to follow-up; Megan was not in so I left another voice mail reiterating the need for an answer on the BPO and my residency status.
March 16, 2010, 8:30 am: I called Megan and she advised that my residency was an issue – Chase was “unable to verify owner occupancy”. I pointed out that my Federal Income Tax returns reflected my residence address and she agreed. Nonetheless, Chase wanted the following information:
1. Copies of last 4 months bank statements (previously submitted)
2. Copies of last 2 months pay stubs (previously submitted)
3. Copies of most recent utility bills with service address (previously submitted)
4. A P&L for 1099 “business”
I advised Megan that bank statements and pay stubs had been submitted with my modification request in December 2009. I told Megan I did not own or operate a business; I am a W-2 employee who supplements my income as a 1099 employee for another company. Megan indicated the need for all of the information and a P&L regardless of what I said; she noted she would be out of the office 3/24 to 4/5 and I should get this information to her as soon as possible and call after the information was faxed to confirm receipt.
I faxed items 2, 3 & 4; putting my 1099 earnings in a P&L format to satisfy her request, couched in a memo indicating I do not own or operate a business. Additionally I took it upon myself to obtain and fax my Cape May County Voter’s record indicating residency at the address since 2005. As I was in Florida on business, I could not access my checking statements but advised Megan I would provide them by Saturday 3/20 when I returned home.
March 17, 2010, 1:00 pm: I called Megan to confirm receipt of the information. Megan reviewed the submissions and agreed the information received (3 pages voter’s records; 5 pages P&L + two months paychecks; 3 pages owner occupied cover memo & utility bills) was in order and legible. I again confirmed that checking statements would be sent 3/20.
March 20, 2010, 10:30 am: I arrived home to find a denial letter dated 3/5/10 and postmarked 3/8/10 indicating I was denied for a loan modification as Chase was “unable to verify residence“. I immediately called Chase and Megan indicated I had been denied but the case was reopened as my voting record satisfied “them”. Chase also wanted a contact telephone number to schedule an interior appraisal. I gave the same cell # provided since 2/24/09 and asked again about the BPO. Megan indicated it was a 32-page document; she tried to extract a price/value from it while I waited but after putting me on hold and speaking with a co-worker, decided she was unable to do so. Megan said the interior appraisal was important and she would be going away so the sooner I sent the checking account statements, the better. That evening I faxed:
1. Copies of last 4 months bank statements from my two checking accounts
2. A formal notice indicating my contact phone number for scheduling an interior appraisal
March 22, 2010, 8:30 am: I called Megan to confirm receipt of all information and to schedule the interior appraisal. She was not in so I left a voice mail.
March 23, 2010, 7:45 am: I called Megan again; she was not in so I left a voice mail.
March 23, 2010, 12:40 pm: Megan called back and confirmed receipt of checking account statements and confirmed that no additional paperwork was required at this time. I asked about scheduling the interior appraisal and she said it depended on the review of the bank statements. I protested as the bank statements were no different than those submitted in Dec 09. She said they still had to be reviewed. I asked her to confirm that indeed the file HAD been reopened and she said it had. I commented that when Jacqueline Ham left for vacation, she never came back – might that happen with Megan? She said she wouldn’t be surprised; “they are reassigning a lot of cases” and she did not know what state(s) she might end up with. She reiterated the bank statement review takes precedent over the scheduling of the interior appraisal. I asked who I should speak to while she was out of the office; Megan put a note in the file to contact me directly for scheduling or if any additional information was required and said she would be back on 4/5/10.
I told Megan while I appreciated her help, she was a conduit, not a decision-maker; I went on to say I would drive anywhere to meet face-to-face with an empowered decision-maker. Megan said I would not be allowed to meet with “those people” and I was at the highest possible level with her.
March 26, 2010, 4:00 pm: I called the Chase Executive Lending Office asking to speak with someone in Megan’s absence and got Makisha. In our 30 minute phone call, Makisha verified Megan was out until 4/5 and tried to get an answer on the interior appraisal scheduling. She advised “they” had forwarded the request to the Appraisal Dept. I asked if a Chase employee would conduct the appraisal; she said no, an independent appraiser would contact me and I would negotiate the price. I was stunned and said if I had to pay, why couldn’t I just pick my own appraiser and get things moving; Makisha said they had to be “legitimate” and Chase had a list of approved companies. I asked for the list so I could start negotiating price and expedite getting an appraiser out – she said it “wasn’t done that way”. Makisha expressed surprise that none of this had been covered with me by Megan and that I had not been re-assigned to someone during Megan’s absence. She went on to say I would have to wait for the scheduling call; it would take 7-10 days. I asked when the count of 7-10 days started and Makisha said she had already given me “way more information than she was supposed to”. I backed off as she had been helpful and thanked her for her efforts. Makisha said she would note our conversation in the files.
March 29, 2010: An independent appraiser contacted me looking to schedule the appraisal “tomorrow”. There was no discussion of price or cost to me. We settled on April 1, 2010 as I was to be out of town on business 3/30-3/31/10.
April 1, 2010: The interior appraisal was conducted. The appraiser, Jim Carr, advised me it would be turned over to Chase no later than Monday, April 5, 2010.
April 5, 2010, 1:10 pm: I received via regular and Certified Mail identical letters from Chase dated 3/31/10. The contents were a dunning notice along with marketing solicitations. The letter said:
Your house is your home. We want to keep it that way. We need to talk — call 1-800-848-9380 today.
The letter went on to say I “may be eligible for a modification and a Loan Specialist will work with me to determine the option that best fits my need.” I called immediately and was routed to an auto announcement reiterating receipt of a payment for $6795.09 (I sent $7,000); the delinquent debt of $13,314.48 and indicating that I was past due two payments. I worked through the menu to get to a live person and spoke with Angeer and read her the letter. She cut me off when I told her I’d already applied for a loan modification by asking when; I answered 12/11/09. She put me on hold then returned to say that after reviewing the notes, my file is in review and was sent to the underwriter on 3/1/10. She told me to disregard the letter and asked when I could pay in the next two weeks. I told her that just as I’d advised Laura Walsh on 4/1/10, I could next make a full payment on 6/5/10. Angeer agreed that she saw this noted in the file. With that, we ended the call.
April 6, 2010, 7:45 am: I called Megan as she was to have returned from vacation. She was not in so I left a voice mail.
April 7, 2010, 8:00 am: I called Megan; she was not in so I left a voice mail.
April 8, 2010, 8:10 am: I called Megan; she was not in so I left a voice mail.
April 9, 2010, 7:35 am: I called Megan and she told me my loan had been reassigned; she was no longer on the case. My new contact is Olga Danilova. Megan declined to give me her e-mail.
April 9, 2010, 7:40 am: I called Olga Danilova; she was not in so I left a detailed voice mail.
April 10, 2010, 2:00 pm: I called Olga Danilova; she was not in so I left a detailed voice mail.
April 12, 2010, 8:45 am; 11:15 am; 4:45 pm: I called Olga Danilova; she was not in so I left a detailed voice mail.
April 13, 2010, 8:13 am: I called Olga Danilova; she was not in so I left a detailed voice mail.
April 13, 2010, 8:17 am: I called the Chase Home Lending Executive Office to confirm Olga Danilova was indeed my contact person; I verified she was and I was dialing the correct number. I also obtained her e-mail address.
April 13, 2010: David B. Lowman speaks before the House Committee on Financial Services and tells people who can’t get answers to come to him.
Mr. Lowman, here I am.
Avalon NJ 08202