Journalism in the Public Interest

Cheat Sheet: BofA Supplied Default Answers for ‘Independent’ Foreclosure Claims Reviewers

The Independent Foreclosure Review, the government’s main effort to compensate homeowners for harm by banks, is supposed to be independent from the banks. But in Bank of America’s case, it wasn’t.

The Independent Foreclosure Review, the government's main effort to compensate homeowners for harm by banks, is supposed to be independent from the banks. But in Bank of America's case, it wasn't. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

The Independent Foreclosure Review is the government's main effort to compensate homeowners for harm they suffered at the hands of banks — and, as its name indicates, it's supposed to be independent.

But until recently, that was hardly the case with Bank of America. Supposedly independent, third-party reviewers would sit at a computer, analyzing each homeowner's case by going through hundreds of questions, such as whether the bank had properly reviewed a homeowner for a modification or had charged bogus fees. But the reviewers weren't starting from a blank slate. Bank of America employees had already supplied the answers, which the reviewers would have to override if they did not agree.

No evidence has emerged that Bank of America pressured reviewers to accept its answers, and the bank did not supply answers for the final questions: whether the bank should pay compensation and, if so, how much. But those ultimate determinations depended on responses to the preceding questions, and for reviewers the path of least effort was to accept the bank's answers.

This practice only ended a month after ProPublica published a story showing that Bank of America was doing much of the work itself. When that story was published, ProPublica hadn't yet learned that the answers the bank supplied showed up on the reviewers' computer screens as defaults, and Bank of America strenuously denied that it had compromised the integrity of the review. Since November, the reviewers now begin their analysis without the bank's answers.

Bank of America spokesman Dan Frahm confirmed the change: "Steps were taken" so that the independent reviewer, Promontory Financial Group, "could not view answers supplied by the Bank of America Claim Researcher."

Frahm maintained, however, that the change didn't mean the reviews completed under the prior system were tainted. Promontory's employees have always had the ability to "override any answer supplied by the Bank of America Claim Researcher," he said.

Advocates for homeowners aren't convinced. "It's hard to imagine" that Promontory's reviewers weren't influenced by having the bank's answers right in front of them, said Alys Cohen of the National Consumer Law Center. "As a result it seems obvious that the earlier reviews should be re-reviewed."

Potential Conflict of Interest

The Independent Foreclosure Review is the government's largest program to compensate victims of the banks' foreclosure abuses. 4.4 million homeowners are eligible, but homeowners must submit a claim to ensure they're covered by the review. As of the end of November, only 315,000 homeowners had done so, according to regulators, a low response rate of about seven percent.

Victims could receive up to $125,000 in cash compensation or, if possible, get their home back. The review is overseen by the nation's bank regulators, who were spurred to action in 2011 by the robo-signing scandal.

The review has been dogged by criticism since the outset, partly because of how it works. Banks hire and pay consultants to be the independent, third-party reviewers. Bank regulators must approve them, which the regulators say ensures the independence of the review. But critics argue that the consulting firms have other contracts with the banks and so have a conflict of interest: If the consultants anger the banks, they may lose future business.

For its "independent consultant," Bank of America hired Promontory. Promontory is also conducting the review for Wells Fargo, which has the second largest number of loans eligible for review (about 933,000) after Bank of America (1.3 million) of all the banks.

"A Technical Change"

As ProPublica reported in October, all four of the country's largest banks planned to participate heavily in evaluating whether homeowners were harmed, according to their contracts with the consultants. Of course, homeowners claiming their bank abused them were never told the same bank would be integrally involved in the review.

In October, ProPublica uncovered internal Bank of America memos and emails indicating that, while Promontory made the ultimate decision as to a homeowner's compensation, the bank was doing much of the review work itself.

When ProPublica first presented this evidence to Promontory, Bank of America, and the bank's primary regulator, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, all three initially denied that Promontory was using analysis performed by the bank's own employees.

Now, even as Promontory and Bank of America confirmed they had changed their system to make the bank's analysis invisible to Promontory's reviewers, both companies insisted that the independence of the reviews had never been compromised.

"Promontory resources have always reviewed the files, performed all tests, and reached independent conclusions, without input or influence from Bank of America," said Promontory spokeswoman Debra Cope. "A technical change was made in November with respect to the visibility of information uploaded by Bank of America file preparers.... Although these responses were previously visible to Promontory reviewers, they never had any bearing on Promontory's independent testing processes."

OCC spokesman Bryan Hubbard said the OCC has a policy of not commenting on specific institutions, but added, "as we have stressed before, the OCC expects the independent consultants to exercise their independence in reviewing and evaluating each file. Our examiners are ensuring that occurs."

The NCLC's Cohen said the core problem with the Independent Foreclosure Review is that it is largely being handled in secret.

"At the end of the day, if the regulators and servicers want to put this behind them, they need the public to believe this is legitimate. Without transparency, you can't have real accountability."

I have no confidence in the IFR process. I submitted my request back in Marchbefore the first deadline and was given a confirmation number in May. Here we are 7-months later, and GMAC did nothing but “assign” my rescinded loan to Bank of America, who is steadily breaking the law in California. They are violating the federal bankruptcy stay to reassign mortgages in order to “shop” judges. Judge Catherine Bauer—the former Bank of America Corporate Bankruptcy Attorney turned federal judge—is one of their favorites.

They are submitting false declarations and affidavits in court to accomplish their means.  The courts don’t care. They are all criminals. They don’t care about right and wrong or the truth. They only want this mess behind them so they can collect their stolen rewards.

Bank of America is one and the same as was Countrywide.  They conduct business just the same as did Countrywide, but their purchase of Countrywide was to point the fingers of all wrongdoing at Countrywide which was no more than a shield and distraction to continue with the same business practices of deception and worse.  It’s a crime that they are permitted to stay in business.  Bank of America is just as bad, if not worse, then its former, Countrywide.  Just look at the recent MBIA suit and exhibits.  My own loan file supports the fact that Bank of America was using the same business lending schemes as Countrywide.  I keep reading that the industry is still wondering why Bank of America purchased Countrywide.  Moynihan was brilliant.  They continued to orginate tons of loans that they threw in to the “Legacy”, junk group which was classfied as the Countrywide junk loans.  They knew they would collect default insurance on these loans of which the profits went to the Bank of America side and the losses were then held on the Countrywide side as Legacy.  In all cases of litigation, Bank of America claims it legally can’t be held liable for Countrywide’s wrongdoings, but then, as in my case, claims that Bank of America and Countrywide are one and the same legal entity, which in this case would be legally helpful to them.  I would say that it is even safe to assume that Bank of America is worse than Countrywide as they have just perfected Countrywide’s scheme.  They have far outspent what my home is worth in their effort to out litigate us with their nine different law firms and attorneys.  They deceived, lied and frauduently induced us with their false promises of a modification, taking every penny we had while dual tracking us to foreclosure.  This was Bank of America who now claims it was Countrywide.  I will never understand why our politicians allow this to go on.  Enough is enough and the people of this country should be sick and tired of these banking crooks not being held to the same laws as its citizens.  It’s plainly and blatantly wrong and has caused most property owners’ values to sink as well as stunted the market.  It has hurt all of us.

Like the above respondants, I am sickened beyond belief at the fraudulent behavior visited upon our disabled household, first by Countrywide, followed by BofA who dual tracked us into foreclosure versus HAMP.  After 8 months of HAMP, we were kicked off without satisfactory reason.

Now, we are about to complete our third month on an in-house mod—-however, I have not been able to communicate with the point of contact person, despite repeated attempts on my part.  I wonder if anybody else has ever completed a mod without benefit of ANY communication with the servicer?

Good luck to all…..

Perhaps the 7% response rate mentioned in the article is due to the awareness by the victims of the almost complete lack of accountability?    And one of the things which make it so is the reliance by banks on “faxes missing”. Who in hell uses faxes anymore besides banks?

@Paul - wow, more stellar work. So proud of you and your doggedness and persistence in the fiscal rape of mortgage-holders by $BAC.

Everyone with a $BAC mtg. should stop paying. The mods are fake, they just want to drain your resources before merrily foreclosing.
The short sales are faster f.c. for the bank - you pay the utils. etc. and go to the work of prepping and showing your home. All for what? So the bank can more easily seize it from you.
Eff that.
Resist the mods, the short sales and just say no. If you are likely to lose the property anyway, just sit tight. keep up maintenance and rekey the place. Turn on the alarm system or consider getting one. Dogs are good.
You want to deter the meathead cleanout crews who will be sent to steal your stuff and pawn it, er… secure the property for the bank.
Be civil and polite and stop paying. Send calls to voicemail or block unknown #s. Just use your cell, get a new one if need be. (I get cheap prepaid ones from WalMart.)
Use a PO Box for mail, get your important papers sent there (bills, tax stuff, medical, school records, etc.)
Place valuables in an off-site safe (relative) or bank safe box. Back up the computer (and take it with you if possible when you are away.) Make sure any photos, video, etc. are off-site, or copied.
$BAC is one mean motherf——- and I put nothing past them. Make your house hard to break into, and leave nothing of value or sentiment around the home.
Then just say no.
I stopped paying in Aug. 2010.
Still here. Want my house, $BAC?
Come and get it.
See you in court first.

Countrywide closed my loan know that there were outstanding mortgages on it. I have been in foreclosure 3 months after zI closed. I was told by the title company they said they told Countrwide but they said close anytway becuase they wanted to make there month end bonuses they screwed me and now house is worth a quarter of what it was. Countrwide Bank of New York Mellon and Bank of America are fraud banks. Keep up the fight.

We tried for two years to get a mod from Chase, they told us the “investor” turned down our request.  Chase refused to lower our interest and payment when after we had paid for five years it went to the adjustable at 3% and they started foreclosure on us when we were only three months behind.  My husband filed Chapter 7 and Chase tried to lift the stay, but the judge told them they could wait until the Bankruptcy was discharged, but they went ahead and filed the Notice of Sale with the County and advertised our home for sale.  I was able to stop the sale the day before the sale, I filed a Chapter 11 as an emergency with a lawyer, Global Capital Law, who was a fake firm with Paul Nygen who impersonated a lawyer.  When my bankruptcy was thrown out because the fake lawyers only took my money Chase again advertised the sale and almost took our home, but finally we found a good lawyer, Giovanni Orantes of the Orantes Law firm in Los Angeles and we stopped the sale.  We filed a Foreclosure Review and Chase stepped in and asked for permission to deal direct with us and then they wrote us a letter and explained how they didn’t do anything wrong.  They tried to take our house with fake information, WAMU had made the loan and made me get off, I had a higher FICO, then they used my husband’s name and my social security.  They tried to take our house with lies.  We spent all our money, lucky we finally found a lawyer willing to take us with almost no money, I am 71 and feel the last few years have ruined our life, but thank God for a good lawyer and maybe we will hold on to our properties.  Our lawyer was able to cram down our home, which the congress made illegal when they passed the law for the banks.  Our lawyer was able to prove we also farm, so they had to cram it to the value.  We had paid $540,000 and the loan was lowered to $250,000, the appraised value.  I put in a claim with the Foreclosure Review, but I think Chase has stepped in and given them the answers and don’t think we will get any help from this fraudulent settlement.

Oh and when I sent in the Qualified Written Request and asked who owned our loan Chase said they did.

I got absolutely nowhere with boa after 2 years.
I cannot get help from anyone.


Try——a lot of knowledgeable folks there and it’s free.

Why only homeowners between 2009-2010? I applied in 2011, was put into wrongful foreclosure first at the end of 2011 and then again in 2012, where it stands at the moment. Of course now they say “What 2011 foreclosure? We don’t have any record of that.” I do.

I now have to vacate my house because I can no longer physically or mentally endure. I have both physical and mental disabilities and was abandoned by my husband (which started this whole thing), so I cannot take the unrelenting abuse by Bank of America. So what about those who have been defrauded and wrongfully foreclosed on in 2012? It’s not like they stopped doing it after they supposedly lost the lawsuit and “promised” to behave, you know.

I was given the name to make a complaint against the foreclosure review phonies, will give it another try, also if you lost your home try national mortgage settlement (866)372-6901 and

There isn’t enough bailout money in the universe to satisfy all the illegal activities of Bank of America.  I dream of getting a check in the mail after my IFR for $125,000.  Then reality hits.  BofA will be keeping it and blaming Countrywide or anyone else they can.  No, I do NOT have any more confidence since BofA changed their review tactics.

Oh,  Bank of America isn’t the only one involved in the process.

I filed a complaint with Independent Foreclosure Review Board
and the next thing I receive in the mail, is a response to
my complaint from the bank.  JP Morgan Chase responded
to in my complaint, and their response was not true.

I could prove what I was writing in my complaint.  My husband
just told me don’t bother.  The Independent Foreclosure Review Board
never told us the banks are involved in the process.

I have been very diligent in complaining to: Better
Business Bureau, Consumer Financial Protection Agency,
Maryland Attorney General and The Office of the Treasury Controller of the Currency Administrator of the Banks – The OCC,
Department of Banking and Insurance, just to name a few.

My husband says - it doesn’t matter, that we have
been defrauded, that many laws were broken in
our mortgage documents - period and we just have to
deal with this nightmare.

Out of the blue - my husband and I had to leave our
jobs unexpectedly due to physical and mental disabilities
(which got us started in this whole mess in the first place)

I am determined to change my life around, I am fore going
my knee operations,I’m back in school, obtaining another
degree, I’ll return to work, and get out of this black hole of
a mess!

The banks are just “untouchable”
and we are going to have to make our own path out of this.

You will not get help from any of these agencies…zip….zilch…nada.  There are very few attorneys that will represent homeowners.  They represent the banks where the bucks are big and flow easily.  One thing I would like to call attention to is for those who do get some sort of reduction in their mortgage, cram down or anything of the like.  Rumor has it that our wonderful government sponsored Fannie Mae is going after the deficiencies even in cases where the banks have put in writing they will not pursue.  Just sharing info cause I’d hate to see more people are financially ruined have this bite them in the a$$ later after they think they are finally putting their lives back together.  Unless I see proof otherwise, it seems that our government has been and continues to be complicit in these schemes and the government agencies are not there to help the individual but to gather info to use in the government’s pursuit of also profiting off the backs of the individuals as well as leaving the investors, which is where most of our individual retirement funds are, empty handed.  The BIG PROFITORS are the banks, wall street and uncle sam.  They are hoping that most folks just give up.  I will fight them to the end.  It is now my mission.  If other causes in this country such as civil rights, women’s rights and all the other very important constitutional rights were not fought for; this country would be a far different place.  We are allowing ourselves, as a society, to be dragged back in time in all the wrong ways while speeding ahead and leaving behind many of the positive things of bygone years.  We must demand accounting and responsibility from our government and honest and ethical behavior and business practices from our banks, wall street and our corporations.  The big banks have become run-away trains of dishonesty, unethical behaviors and downright lawbreaking.  Another major collision is bound to occur.  If at all possible, get on with your lives, but don’t make it too easy for the big banking mafia.

i was in bankruptcy when b of a foreclosed.  they did not send send a letter via registered mail .  i knew of the foreclosure only from my tenant through my property manager . yes , the home was used as a primary residence before for several years .    the flr came back settled with zero compensation .  i don’t think the new change in bofa procedure makes any difference at all.  the bank should not pay flr people, that way we would have true independence .

i tell everyone i know of the abuse we suffered from citi mortgage . i lost my home of 15 years to these criminals while on hamp. nothing but lies and deciet. i dont expect much to come of the foreclosure reviews. i only hope some day to see the big banks fail for what they have done to america.

I am also interested in hearing from you about CitiMortgage and its IFR process. Are Citi hiring its own “independent” companies to review our complaints as well? And when this review is going to end, and why does it take so long to finish? Citi put our house for foreclosure within 6 months after our “default” (we were told repeatedly to default by Citi if we wanted our mortgage to be considered for HAMP modification process, while at the same time side-by-side Citi did their foreclosure proceeding on our house), so it’s only fair now if Citi is also given 6 months or less to finish this IFR review and its results.

I completely lose trust with Citi for being so obvious they only play games with us when we apply for HAMP. They push us now to the brink of not being able to continue paying our mortgage. I am disabled and living on SS, my wife just got a major surgery a few months ago, and yet we are told that “Default Not Imminent” citing there is no “financial hardship that has reduced [our] income or increased [our] expenses”. So now we do not have any better option than selling our home soon and back to renting (BTW what if Citi is proven at fault by IFR on our past HAMP process in 2010, when we already sold our house, will Citi still be paying a penalty back to us, or we are out of luck because we no longer own our house in dispute?).

In 2009 i got behind due to injury by 2 months.
I started immediately making calls to bank of america to try to make arrangements to straightent it out. I was still paying my mortgage and was told they didn’t make arrangements like that…...but wait!  If you stop paying, we can get you into a program.
they asked for financial info and a letter stating why i had missed my payment….. in the mean time i call once a week to whats happening, they keep saying ” i wouldn’t pay anything till you hear from us”.
Couple months go by and i get a letter requesting the info again… i call…again.
When i finally got a person, i asked what the deal was and was told” we don’t except copies of anything…only wet ink original documents “
That’s surely the problem.
I was reluctant to do this but was assured there was a magical department at the bank where original documents are reviewed and mailed back to the homeowners. A month later they want more copies of stuff…..” you didn’t mail your original stuff did you? Omg… never do that!” Said the lady at boa
So time marched on and i got scammed 2 times by “help ” outfits. In 2011 i got a modification pack. Just fill it out and start making an affordable, attractive trial payment. I was to pay 3 of them and my modification would be complete….. i paid 7 payments and didn’t get any word or confirmation that bank of America was keeping track… i stopped.
6 months later i get a package…. congratulations on your modification !  @ 40 bucks a month, so i start paying again over the phone to my assigned agent…...4 months go by with no paper work… statement…. no confirmation of receipt. So i stopped paying 2 months ago.
2 weeks ago i get a call from BOA… a new personal care representative just introducing himself and letting me know he is reviewing my file…..he never called back.
The same guy has been here bi-weekly taking pictures for two years…my house, the abandoned house to my left and the abandoned house a cross the street…all bank of america properties.

It’s adorable that Bank of America defends itself by pointing out that it didn’t pressure anybody.  Because it’s not encouraging them at all to make them plod through an untold number of reviews but have easy answers at hand…

We’ll never get it, but I’d love to see statistics on how long each review took.  I’m guessing quite a few of them were only slightly longer than it takes to click a “Next” button.

I didn’t trust this from the get go — besides if you get a check and you cash it you limit your legal steps—people don’t go after the banks go after the real estate agents and brokers handling your property,  go after the lawyers handling the foreclosure (David Stern ring a bell in Florida) most of these foreclosure mill attorneys are unethical vermin feeding like vultures just like the bankster go after the Insurance companies (Insurance fraud is against the law —)  don’t go after the banksters go after the players

I have absolutely no confidence in the Independent Foreclosure Review.

What I have been through during the entire process of my foreclosure (Two payments behind, making a payment every month, actively contacting the lender to get current, ripped off badly by two attorneys, etc., etc.) has caused me to lose all faith in not just our financial and legal systems, but in our nation and our society.

I have written numerous times after submitting my claim to the IFR, asking them to expedite any decision regarding my case. They do nothing in response, my home appears headed for sale while I live in my truck.

I agree with most of the commenters: the entire process is fraudulent, from top to bottom. I stopped paying my mortgage to BOA in May 2012. I have not lived in the home in almost six years, as I had to relocate to another state in Feb. 2007 in order to get a job.

Working with an attorney, we finally got a short sale offer accepted for September 2012. We had a closing date (and the buyer thought they’d be moving), my tenant moved out, and… BOA sold the loan to Seterus. The best part was that the division of BOA working on my short sale had no idea the loan had been sold until I told them.

The process has started all over again. I am so, so glad I stopped paying BOA. I only wish I’d done it sooner. For those who may be experiencing similar issues, I have blogged about all of this in detail at since 2007. I am in the process of scanning each and every document I’ve received, which I plan to post using the ProPublica timeline tool, to point out the myriad conflicting stories and issues that happen at the same points in time. This should all be out in the open.

The HUD counselors, single-points-of-contact, government review boards, etc. all exist to confuse and distract you, they are all on the side of the banks and banks are out to get you. Do interact with them to establish due diligence, and keep a simple log of those interactions: date, who, what was said. Watch the banks closely, nearly every act and statement is fraudulent, and will be your ammunition. Then take that to court, which is your only chance of fair arbitration and justice.
I highly recommend the book Clouded Titles by David Kreiger, it will help you win more than anything I know.

We reinstated after 4 missed payments (around $5000). Bank of America wanted to prevent that and attached $4620 to that. These junk fees were charged before the mortgage was even assigned to them. So I sued them in court for their 10 months refusal to itemize the fees after three QWRs. I asked the Bank to bring the itemization to court. They didn’t. We also got a letter that we cannot participate in the mortgage settlement because BoA is not the owner of our loan. We had two court hearings in which the judge asked “who owns the loan”. The first time attorney said BoA, the second time they said it was Freddie Mac. I filed complaints with the OCC, AG Pam Bondi, and the CFPB. All they do is forward the complaints to the bank. My judge could not make a decision yet - it has been 6 weeks since the trial. $ 4620 in junk fees in pre-foreclosure! This amount was to keep us from reinstating. It is fraud, unfair debt collection, unearned kickback fees and plain wrong. Who can take part in the settlement if after the troubled loans are assigned to the Bank the Bank says “we don’t own your loan”??? How can they get credit for short sales then, if they don’t ever own the loans. That would mean the investors are actually paying for the settlement - not the banks. Its all an scam!

December 12, 2012, exactly 6 years to the day that Countrywide/Bank of America filed its NED and accelerated my original note.  6 years also happens to be how long the statute of limitations gives the lender to sue in order to collect on the note.

Note is no longer enforceable and the Trust Deed is exstinguished.  It has been a long, long road to travel but I have reached my destination and BAC can kiss my lily white a$$.

Now it is my turn to drag them through hell, screaming all the way.  What’s almost 7 years of someones life worth, can it even be quantified into dollars, I doubt it but we are going to try and find out.

Good luck to the rest of you out there, just don’t quit fighting.



We are similiar closed on my loan served with foreclosure papers the closed with outstanding mortgages on home. CW guys wanted to make there month end bonuses how sick

Elizabeth Sanchez

Dec. 20, 2012, 9:34 a.m.

Once again the people wrongly foreclosed upon is the one affected by Country Wide- BOA’s procedures. Not fair at all. It is a continuing crime to all of us who have lost our only homes and are still expecting justice, some kind of compensation for all these years of struggling. Will there be justice at all?  As Kate said “Enough is enough and the people of this country should be sick and tired of these banking crooks not being held to the same laws as its citizens”. Where is the government ?

My problems started pretty much like everyone else. Got a little behind on the mortgage and went to my servicer for help.  Almost 7 years later, 3 modification applications and 4 foreclosures behind me and I’ve seen it all.  Every lie, every forged and altered document, attorneys willing to come forward in court and testify (without being sworn in) to facts that they had no actual knowledge of and it goes on and on.

Since 2006 I have been told that Countrywide, UBS AG, Credit Suisse First Boston and Bank of Ameerica, owned my note, individually or all at one time, no one knows the truth.  But what I do know is that my original note has never been assigned, transfered or sold to anyone and that after December 12, 2012, I now own my home free and clear because the 6 year statute of limitations has run out and the TBTF Banks have actually failed.

Do I feel bad about getting my house without paying off my obligations, hell no!  I tryed every day while living through the nightmare on Elm Street to get someone, anyone to work with me, to take my money and all I got in return was BS and lies from institutions who didn’t even have one dime invested in my property.

If these past 7 years have taught me just one thing, it’s the fact that all of us are in this together against all of them.  There is no help coming from local or federal governments, no plans, no mods, no 49 state settlement, not one program is designed to protect or help the victims of the criminal conspiracy within the TBTF Banking community.

Do what you can for as long as you can and do not expect help from those outside the circle because it is not there.  Realize that this is a street fight so you fight or you die (or lose your home and your sanity).


@TheGrey - check local records in six months, get a certified copy of that deed.
Banksters will double back with fake liens, etc.
Make sure it as you say it is. I hope so.
Act as if you are dealing with the Mob. Verify and confirm what you think. Use a lawyer if you have to.
Watch your back.
Cheers to you on your success!

@TheGrey: My situated started out differently, but I’m curious about the six year statute of limitations.  Mine is an actual case of a defective deed, but no one will listen.

I signed a note with WMC Mortgage in December 2005 but there were all sorts of problems so we rescinded the note and signed a new note in May 2006. I have all of the paperwork.

I was paying my May 2006 note when GMAC issued the NOD claiming that I was delinquent on the Dec 2005 note. They issued the NOD on 3/3/08 and then returned my payments to me on 3/4/08. They eventually rescinded that NOD, but had BoA issue a new NOD in March 2011 using the same rescinded note.

I’ve been suing them in federal and state court, but as yet have gone nowhere. Thanks.

Marvin Von Renchler

Dec. 23, 2012, 6:31 p.m.

I went to work for them as a temp. The position was main processing between originator and underwreiting. To begin with, we had two weeks training. That was a scam, as the trainer gave us the answers while taking the tests. If we didnt know, she would come do it for us. On my first day live with boirrowers, I caught borrower fraud. Non owner properties trying for owner loan programs. I went to the supervisor who told me to let it go and let the underwriter do their job. During the training, a great amount of time was spent about determining fraud and what to do. I emailed the uunderwriter sho thanked me but did nothing. Since I was a part of the transaction as processor, and I HATE fraud after being a mortgage broker for 30 years and seeing so much of it, I contacted the borrower to request certain documentation to help back up their owner occupied request. The borrower wqas a little irritated and the info didnt come so I went to the super again.This time her super was listening—-a wet behind the ears, power hungry punk. Almost all employees in that building were just over teen aged. I was told again to let the underwriter worry about it and I protested.  An hour later as I left for the night, I received a text saying my entry card was deactivated and to never come back to BoA.  The Temp agency wouldnt trell me why but acted surprised that I had no idea why. (of course I knew the REAL reason)  She acted likeI had done something terrible. In fact that temp agency wouldnt consider me for anything else.

While in the back rooms, I sawthe whiteboards showing applications taken vs closed. It was a horror. A joke. They were closing so few. Looking back on it, I assume they wanted to look the other way and close as many as they could. Now I see articles about them being sued for continuing Countrywides old, dangerous practices. Good on them.

Dear reraders, I hope you all realize that NO lenders ever wanted to work things out with the borrowers. HARP/SHMARRP They receive ZILLIONS from the government to stay afloat and really are taking no loosses at all. They WANT the real estate back now—-a 360 from the ‘old days’  Now huge money outfits are trying to buy thousands of the SHADOW INVENTORY owned by banks to be turnedinto rentals. We are going to end up with mega landlord companies. The face of real estate is changing.

I take pictures and evaluate properties for banks. These are called BPO or Broker Price Opinions. Ive done THOUSANDS of them in 3 years. Change the owners names and their stories are all the same. They started out with some problem and just wanted to pass on several payments to get back on their feet. They were told that was a LOAN MODIFICATIUON, then told they had to have missed 2 payments to qualify! They stopped making payments then applied for the mod, only to be dropped down the ‘hole of no return’. The lies, delays, by the lenders. These lenders TOLD THEM TO STOP MAKING PAYMents. i LISTENED IN ON CALLS TO LENDERS FROM DIFFERENT HOMEOWNERS. TRUE STORY. KEY BANK, WELLS, TWO SAVINGS AND LOANS AND SEVERAL SERVICERS. ALL SAID “We are not ‘oficially’ telling you not to make payments but thats the only way we will help you.

The lenders then delayed for months up to several years, then turned down the mod requests and asked for the tremendous back due to reinstate. Back due that included fines, legal fees, etc. Even if the borrowers had been escrowing the payments, they wouldnt have had enough to save themselves plus their credit was now destroyed.

This isnt conspiracy theory, folks. Many have given proof. One big internet mortgage siote got a reporter spy into a back room and saw that a fax number given out to borrowers to send in applications was feeding to a shrfedder.  Many of the turndowns were illegal in form. Verbal, no reason, etc. These lenders WANT the properties back. Many loans had mortgage insurance that only paid out if the home went through foreclosure. And again, our wonderful government doesntwant the banking industry to fail so it keeps printing money and throwing it to the banks. They are WINNING, not losing money from bad real estate.

The American public is being screwed bigger and harder than any time in history.

Those that drink the kool-aid would not believe the truth even if it jumped up and bit them on the nose.  Then we have the press, as in this Bloomberg article, helping the banks hand out more kool-aid to all that will drink it.  I may not be any kind of a brianiac, but at least I have the ability to dig up all of the facts, research and ask questions, look at any proof and come to my own conclusions.  Too bad so many rather sit back and buy what the crooks are selling.  We should be demanding the full truth from our government and any and all of those involved in this mega law breaking scheme should go to jail; directly to jail; do not pass go and do not collect $200.  Restitution and jail time both would not be a big enough punishment.  Shame on those out there who fall for this nonsense that “deadbeat” homeowners pulled this off.  Get your heads out of the ground, catch some real news rather than watching the junk reality shows, stop drinking the kool-aid or smoking that funny stuff and take a good hard look at the real story and FACTS, in their entirety.  Thumbs down to Bloomberg for trying to pass off a banking fairy tale as a legitimate piece of journalism.

Every little “Help the Homeowner” program, every little civil suit brought by the government, the 49 state AG’s settlement, this case and that case and the OCC mandated independent review, there is but one thing that is being accomplished by all of this BS, our time is running out.

While we watch the bouncing ball the clock is ticking and before long the statute of limitations will have run out on all independent claims originating from the housing bubble and all of the fraud that was involved in that criminal conspiracy.

It has all been a distraction and very few people on the outside edge of it all have gotten help or won a case or two but for the most part 99% of the 99%ers have gotten screwed in this deal.

All we can do is keep scratching away at it and fight, fight, fight.  Most of us are going to lose, that is the way this thing is set up but it lifts my spirit a little every time one of us gets to stick it to the 1%ers.

Don’t believe anything you hear and only 10% of what you see if it’s coming from the other side and Bloomberg ceased to be an asset when it ceased to be an independent source after it was sold awhile back.


I can tell you this…  Countrywide is alive and well, it is just called Bank of America now…  I worked for BAC back in the day, and I can vouch that the culture and the mission was “Doing the right thing”.  Truly.  That changed the day Countrywide darkened the door.  I am not a disgruntled employee; I left of my own accord to become associated with another firm whose culture is more closely aligned with my own personal lifestyle; doing the right thing.  It saddens me that the once-honorable BAC has sunk to this level.  A.P. Giannini must be doing acrobatics in his grave.

Marvin Von Renchler

Dec. 24, 2012, 4:20 p.m.

The 49 state AG settlement?? WHAT A JOKE!  Its worthless! All it did at best was add a few more possible months to the time people get to spend in the houses before they are kicked out. Here is the BIG secret:  There are two types of foreclosure. Regular courthouse steps auction and JUDICIAL where its a trial and the judge decides who owns the home. The AG settlement only addressed the regular foreclosure process and said that lenders have to give homeowners another chance for a loan mod.  It didnt cover horrible back due, etc which noone will be able to come up with but it didnt ADDRESS JUDICIAL FORECLOSURE!!!!  Not all states have judicial foreclosures. We do in Oregon. o what does that mean? The lenders on Oregon houses simply IGNORE the AG settlement and file for judicial foreclosure.  End of story. Onlya fraction of people in trouble could qualify for a loan mod anyway. Sometimes a loan mod results in HIGHER PAYMENT than before! This is the worst scam/theft in human history.

And dont give me any crap about ‘Adults signed the original paperwork, knew there are no guarantees in life’, etc. As a mortgage broker, I used to have lenders underwriters out right tell me that they wouldnt be checking income. Some even told agents how to fake the loans! I used to ask in public forums how we determined ‘stated income’ so I wouldnt be a part of fraud. I was never answered with anything other than “Make sure the amount of income matches what the employment type is, thats all”. Then we had NO STATED ANYTHING loans where people got huge loans based ONLY on their credit score. Only!  The banking industry knew what they were doing.  Go to youtube and look up the series ‘ADDICTED TO MONEY” to see how/why this all started.

boa should never ever be trusted by anyone

This article is part of an ongoing investigation:
Foreclosure Crisis

Foreclosure Crisis: Banks and Government Fail Homeowners

Banks and the government have fallen short in helping homeowners in danger of foreclosure.

The Story So Far

Systemic failures at the country’s banks and mortgage servicers have exacerbated the most severe foreclosure crisis since the Great Depression, and government efforts to limit the damage have fallen short. ProPublica created an unrivaled database of homeowners who have faced foreclosure, opened a Facebook page to encourage homeowners to share their stories, wrote profiles of some of them, and incorporated their experiences into our reporting. We also provided a comprehensive rundown of the numbers behind the crisis.

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