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Fri Oct 11, 2013, 10:49 AM

 

3 Strange But True Facts About Me.

1) I was once fired from a role as an African American psychic on a ghost hunting reality show before filming of the pilot began, and no, it wasn't because I am a corpse white Caucasian - I wasn't taking it "seriously" enough. (They were right - I wasn't. )

2) I am mostly responsible for a new theory about the possible cause, prevention, and treatment protocol for pediatric neuromuscular issues including cerebral palsy and sensory processing which is currently benefiting 83% of the children using the protocol.

3) I won a foreclosure battle against my bank!!! <== Yes, this is the one people will probably disbelieve the most!

Although the first two are fun stories, this post is really about the third.

We bought a house in mid-2008 right as the market started crashing. We used a "203k" construction loan to rebuild the worst house in a good neighborhood, with the expectation the loan would be refinanced when the construction was complete. (The construction interest rate was several points higher than a traditional mortgage, and standard practice involves refinancing when complete.) We went over budget, and depleted our financial reserves / went into substantial "unexpected debt". When we finished the construction, the bank delayed the refinancing for six months until the GM/Chrysler bankruptcies of Spring 2009 ended up with my husband being laid off for two months, which meant we no longer qualified for the refinance.

We began the "Loan Modification Process" in August of 2009. Yesterday - October 10, 2013 - I received the papers from the bank showing it was finally completed.

Our house was officially foreclosed incorrectly TWICE during this process, and reversed both times. We attempted to negotiate in good faith, spent over $36,000 in attorney fees, won $1,500 for them destroying my husband's credit, and had an idiot judge tell us there was nothing she could do to help us.

The *only* thing that saved us from being homeless was that I am an Anal-Retentive Detail Oriented person who was able to document over 275 communications between them and us, provide written proof of our veracity, and when I didn't get what I needed (them following the rules), I escalated.

Oh, and our case was identified by a HUD Auditor in December of 2010 who contacted us/documented the bank's "severe non-compliance", and we "blind cc'd" the faulty instructions to her for the next several months.

In August of 2012 the bank was instructed by FHA to halt all legal proceedings against us while they investigated. (We had sued them, and they decided to foreclose during litigation because we OBVIOUSLY weren't going to win.) The bank decided to ignore the FHA folks, and foreclosed on us a few weeks later. The bank was repeatedly instructed to provide documentation about our case, and they ignored it. We correctly concluded they were waiting for the "six month redemption period" in Michigan to elapse so we would have no legal standing.

Our attorneys told us repeatedly to "walk away" because no one *ever* beats the bank.

In December of 2012, in a final desperate bid to save our home, I sent 21 3-Ring Binders with documentation of our complaints to every single vice president of the bank in question, all attorneys involved, and all the way up the chain of command from our "FHA Housing Specialist" to the Assistant Secretary of HUD in Washington.

In January of 2013, the bureaucracy moved - not, I am convinced, because we were being screwed over, but because the bank was "ignoring" the people who were supposed to be overseeing them, and THAT was unacceptable.

(I'm good with that! )

In February of 2013 the (second) foreclosure was reversed with apologies for having been done "in error" and in April of 2013 the findings came back that there were "servicing errors identified."

FHA spanked the bank HARD. We didn't get a free house (we weren't trying to get one), and the fuss I raised did end up making a difference that I hope will help other home owners.

Oh, and they have to clean up my husband's credit, which is HUGE deal for us.

I was repeatedly told "no one had ever seen a case so well documented" - and yet, we still came within weeks of losing our home.

We weren't special. The screwing we were getting was standard procedure. We actually had the money to fight, the skills to document the situation, and the wit to know when to escalate.

The bottom line is that the bank only did the "right thing" because the government regulators forced them to do it.

We were lucky. I have talked to dozens of people who gave up, lost their homes, had their credit destroyed, and finally walked away because there was nothing else they could think of to do, and they needed to move on with their lives.

We came so close to that - and even at the end, it almost got screwed up.

Last month we sent in our final notarized paperwork, and the week we did that, the bank "outsourced" their loan modification process, which meant anyone who knew anything about our account was no longer employed, and our paperwork was in a box on the desk of someone who didn't work there anymore. (I felt bad. Oh, and they couldn't find my "authorization to discuss" again either, which is a whole story in itself.) Fortunately a little pressure from our Not Happy FHA person (did I mention the bank was instructed to comply in April and we were now in late September?), and things smoothed out fairly quickly.

I have the bank notarized completed paperwork next to me. It has a cover letter that is definitely personalized. The last two paragraphs say this:

...Your concerns have enabled us to update procedures and practices ensuring a better relationship with our customers now and in the future.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us directly. <== their underline


It is real. I beat the bank.

(Thanks to the government regulator who is currently on furlough because the government is shut down.)

It is over. We won.

I beat the bank.

101 replies, 8462 views

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Arrow 101 replies Author Time Post
Reply 3 Strange But True Facts About Me. (Original post)
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 OP
Capt. Obvious Oct 2013 #1
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #5
awoke_in_2003 Oct 2013 #26
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #59
awoke_in_2003 Oct 2013 #60
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #61
awoke_in_2003 Oct 2013 #62
Vinnie From Indy Oct 2013 #2
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #6
lonestarnot Oct 2013 #3
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #7
randome Oct 2013 #4
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #8
hedda_foil Oct 2013 #9
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #10
warrior1 Oct 2013 #13
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #14
warrior1 Oct 2013 #15
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #33
awoke_in_2003 Oct 2013 #27
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #34
awoke_in_2003 Oct 2013 #54
hedda_foil Oct 2013 #55
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #56
uppityperson Oct 2013 #11
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #12
uppityperson Oct 2013 #49
liberal_at_heart Oct 2013 #16
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #18
RC Oct 2013 #17
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #19
RC Oct 2013 #24
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #29
RC Oct 2013 #51
SwampG8r Oct 2013 #20
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #22
Post removed Oct 2013 #21
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #50
drmeow Oct 2013 #52
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #53
eppur_se_muova Oct 2013 #23
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #35
JDPriestly Oct 2013 #25
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #39
LuckyLib Oct 2013 #28
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #30
mahina Oct 2013 #31
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #32
joanbarnes Oct 2013 #36
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #42
dixiegrrrrl Oct 2013 #37
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #46
Zorra Oct 2013 #38
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #45
KittyWampus Oct 2013 #40
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #43
Phentex Oct 2013 #41
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #44
Autumn Colors Oct 2013 #47
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #48
Cha Oct 2013 #57
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #58
Cha Oct 2013 #63
Curmudgeoness Oct 2013 #64
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #73
tclambert Oct 2013 #65
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #74
BlancheSplanchnik Oct 2013 #66
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #75
mountain grammy Oct 2013 #67
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #76
blm Oct 2013 #68
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #77
bhikkhu Oct 2013 #69
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #78
Hekate Oct 2013 #70
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #80
hopemountain Oct 2013 #71
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #81
juajen Oct 2013 #72
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #82
cui bono Oct 2013 #79
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #83
cui bono Oct 2013 #84
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #85
cui bono Oct 2013 #90
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #99
Rebellious Republican Oct 2013 #86
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #92
LiberalLoner Oct 2013 #87
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #93
hotrod0808 Oct 2013 #88
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #94
hotrod0808 Oct 2013 #100
klook Oct 2013 #89
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #95
mentalsolstice Oct 2013 #91
Skidmore Oct 2013 #96
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #97
mattclearing Oct 2013 #98
IdaBriggs Oct 2013 #101

Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 10:51 AM

1. No. 2 is well known

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Response to Capt. Obvious (Reply #1)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 10:58 AM

5. Thank you.

 

Moved me to tears...

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Response to Capt. Obvious (Reply #1)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 12:49 PM

26. I didn't know it...

 

but would love hear more.

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Response to awoke_in_2003 (Reply #26)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 07:53 PM

59. Should I PM ou details?

 

It is super cool.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #59)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 07:55 PM

60. Sure, that sounds good. nt

 

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Response to awoke_in_2003 (Reply #60)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 07:56 PM

61. Will do it later tonight - time to get the kids down, then spend some

 

time with my husband...

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #61)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 07:59 PM

62. take your time...

 

no huge rush.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 10:52 AM

2. Congrats!

Cheers!

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Reply #2)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 10:59 AM

6. Thank you!

 

Still doesn't feel real, but I have the letter right here...

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 10:53 AM

3. Kicked that bank's ass!

 

Good on you!

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Response to lonestarnot (Reply #3)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:00 AM

7. Thank you! And yes I did!

 

I doubted a few times....

Heck, I *panicked* a few times, but for everyone!!!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 10:57 AM

4. Very impressive!

 

All three of 'em!


[hr][font color="blue"][center]Treat your body like a machine. Your mind like a castle.[/center][/font][hr]

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Response to randome (Reply #4)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:01 AM

8. Thank you!!!

 

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:21 AM

9. If I had to bet on IdaBriggs vs the bank, I'd ALWAYS pick Ida to win out in the end.

Always!

Now I want to hear more about how you got cast as an African-American psychic!



Hedda

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Response to hedda_foil (Reply #9)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:37 AM

10. ROFL! Thank you!!!

 

It was "favor for a friend" time -- my friend is a "ghost hunter" by hobby, and she had been recruited as part of the "technical" team for a (cable?) ghost hunting show.

I love my friend dearly, but being publicly seen as a "psychic on a ghost hunting show" was probably not going to enhance my credibility quotient on the whole "preemie growth project" thing, and it isn't something that was going to enhance my resume in IT world, either. I agreed to do it if my identity was masked with make-up, and we ended up making me as "opposite" me as we could.

They put a wig on me, darkened my skin, and did a few other things, and seriously, I did *NOT* look like myself. It was really kind of cool.

I don't want to give away any secrets, but yes, there were some planned lines. (Shocking!) I was prepped and ready to go, but child care was an issue - so I asked for the hotels we were going to be staying at during filming so I could bring my mother-in-law to watch the kids when we were out and about (which they didn't have a week before filming was scheduled to begin - big clue!).

That was when they decided to fire me because I "obviously wasn't taking it seriously enough" by wanting to have the kids at the hotel. Like I said, they were right.

I felt a little guilty, but from what I learned later, it was a true blessing in disguise; there were production issues and some infighting about rights between the producer and the director, and I don't even know if it ended up airing. It was still a fun experience (I am not a ghost hunter person, so I learned some stuff about how they do what they do, which was interesting), and I have a couple of pictures of me in make-up that are pretty interesting.

My friend appreciated the effort, and I got points for being gracious about being booted off the project.

And now, it is one of those funny stories, because seriously, how many people can say they were fired from being an African-American psychic on a ghost hunting show before filming began (especially when they look like me) because they weren't taking it "seriously" enough?

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #10)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:42 AM

13. Is that the one with Grant and Jason?

is the show still on air

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Response to warrior1 (Reply #13)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:48 AM

14. No, I don't think it ever made it to air. It was going to be on cable somewhere.

 

They filmed enough for four episodes before everything blew up (not with ghosts, but with business politics). (I think) they did a haunted lighthouse, and a depot, a school and a house in Northern Michigan somewhere. (I didn't go on filming, since I was fired by then.)

They did have a great opening credit thing with an awesome song, tho.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #14)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:49 AM

15. thanks

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Response to warrior1 (Reply #13)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:31 PM

33. FOUND IT! Or at least the "promo video" on YouTube.

 



Remember, I was fired before filming began. It seemed like they had some fun with it.

Plus they had a GREAT sound track.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #10)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 12:51 PM

27. Umm, we need to see those pics...

 

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Response to awoke_in_2003 (Reply #27)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:35 PM

34. Not going to happen. Lol!

 

I might need a secret disguise someday.




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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #34)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 04:27 PM

54. Party pooper...

 

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #10)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 04:32 PM

55. ROFL to the power of a bazillion!

What a wonderful story! Thanks for sharing it, Ida. But now I want to see the pictures of ultra pale Ida in costume for the role of a lifetime.

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Response to hedda_foil (Reply #55)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 05:06 PM

56. You should have seen me practicing my lines!

 

"I'm sensing ... an ENERGY ..."

I may have been channeling Captain Kirk!



And STILL not sharing the pictures!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:39 AM

11. Congratulations, sounds like a long hard battle. I've a question about #2

Is there stuff online about it as I am interested in reading more. I have worked with kids with CP in the past and would love to read what you did, the protocol, etc. A pm would be ok if you don't want to post more here. Thanks.

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Response to uppityperson (Reply #11)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:40 AM

12. I'll send you a PM later today.

 

Thank you for doing what you do!!!



ON EDIT: Sent with contact information, too.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #12)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 02:13 PM

49. Thank you, will check it out later.

Too many with neuro disprders, any progress is great.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:50 AM

16. Congratulations! That is wonderful.

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Response to liberal_at_heart (Reply #16)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:52 AM

18. Thank you! :) (nt)

 

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:50 AM

17. What are ya goin' to do with all your free time now?

 

Maybe write a book about your experiences?

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Response to RC (Reply #17)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 11:58 AM

19. I've been debating that. I am still finalizing the preemie growth stuff.

 

There is a conference next week that I really should be at (AACPDM) in Milwaukee, WI but they want to put us in the "vendor area" (we have nothing to sell - sigh), and that area sold out months ago. Meanwhile, I need to finish putting together the results of the last round of the project in a way that makes logical sense to parents and medical personnel, and continue to advocate for more investigation / verification of what we found. (I have a lot of trouble with the "83%" number; I am from IT world where this is considered "failure" while the medical people are suspicious because the number is too high!)

Part of me is ready for a break because I am freaking burned out. Another knows I need to get the web page updated, put it all out there in a free kindle format so people who need it can find it, and then get back to work on advocating for infant mortality/morbidity reduction issues.

Plus I work a full time job, have a husband, and six year old twins. Sometimes I'm kind of an over-achiever - lol! (Ask me about the "75 credit hours in 8 months" story - 28 credit hours of college the semester I got married. Sigh. Not that young anymore! Lol!)

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #19)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 12:21 PM

24. "75 credit hours in 8 months"?

 

Us mere mortals need sleep now and again. How'd you find time to get the twins?

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Response to RC (Reply #24)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:06 PM

29. ROFL! I did that back in '96. The twins arrived in 2007.

 

And yes, it was CRAZY STUPID IMPOSSIBLE, and in hindsight, I am not sure how I survived it, especially with the whole wedding thing going on.

I had "taken a year off college" in the 80s, and was making my living with my computer skills. I was paid "good money" for not having a degree, and then my telecommunication industry started going through some upheaval. At some point I found out I was training people who were making three times my salary because they had a degree, while I didn't. (Doh!) My fiance and I had just closed on our first home January 31st, and moved in at the beginning of April, when I told him (after being inspired by Tony Robbins: "Where would you like to be in one year? What's stopping you?" I wanted to quit my full-time job and go back to school full time. He is a finance guy, so he sat down (remember we still weren't married - the wedding was scheduled for October!), and said if I could do it in 8 months, we could make it work.

So I did it in 8 months. I took two classes in the "Spring" semester (considered full time), and attempted to test out of ten classes using CLEP. I was saying, "macro and micro economics - I can test out of macro and micro economics - what ARE macro and micro economics?" Lol! I only succeeded in testing out of 7.

Then I got letters of recommendation from the two professors in Spring (who knew about the crazy tests), and took four classes in Summer (when two was considered full time). That worked out, and by this point I knew I needed 28 credits to finish up, so I got four more letters of recommendation, and took seven classes (where 3 or 4 are considered full time). The wedding kept doing drama things, and I had to schedule the mid-terms around my honeymoon (husband wouldn't let me bring books on the honeymoon!), but I survived and missed the dean's list that last semester by a thin hair (because I turned in a paper late - doh!).

Then I collapsed into an exhausted heap, started opening the wedding gifts/unpacking the house - and eventually got my first job as a college graduate: Easter Bunny in a local drug store.

Not on my resume!

It was crazy, but it was also exhilarating. They told me I am not allowed to do my Masters the same way, so I haven't bothered (except for the whole preemie project thing - everyone reads medical studies as part of their hobby in an attempt to understand this stuff, right?). Plus, the twins keep me busy. (I am kind of screwed - they are GIFTED, and don't tell them this, but they have more raw power than I do....EEEP!)

It is one of the reasons I am a good software developer - I am quickly able to absorb / understand the business needs of my clients and their industries.

Plus, it is fun. Like I said, recovering over-achiever! Lol!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #29)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 02:24 PM

51. Good grief, I got drained just reading your post.

 

I can adsorb the information alright, but it usually take a bit for me to process it to the point of understanding the more complex examples. I need to comprehend something before it will stick. Think of a jig saw puzzle, you need enough pieces to be able to make out the picture. It sometime takes time to put it together enough to do that. "Doh" and "Eureka" are not foreign concepts to me.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 12:00 PM

20. not to downplay #3 but

my wife is a nurse midwife in a hospital practice
is there a way to get a look at this study and the protocols?
thanks and woohoo on the banks I hate them all
love my credit union though

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Response to SwampG8r (Reply #20)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 12:04 PM

22. The "final results" are still being compiled.

 

But we have 121 children who saw improvement (in some cases dramatic) and 40 who saw none. (We started with 271 children, but only have solid data on 161.) Check your PM.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)


Response to Post removed (Reply #21)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 02:22 PM

50. I don't know how to respond to this.

 

And I don't want you to feel ignored.

So, thank you for your good wishes. and

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #50)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 03:06 PM

52. No real need to respond

I don't feel ignored if I don't get a response.

I've been thinking something along these lines for a long time but the idea kept being populated by politicians. When I read your post (BTW - congratulations - should have said that, too) I realized that, as sick as it is, it is the bankers who seemed to fit my enraged fantasy. Probably shouldn't have dumped it on you and didn't mean to rain on your parade. Just feeling so frustrated with the lawlessness of the powers that be and I know enough to know that they have no compassion or empathy so trying to "put them in our shoes" is worthless.

Thanks for the and thanks for being so nice about me 'ing all over your post

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Response to drmeow (Reply #52)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 03:19 PM

53. We all have our days. When the last "incident" happened, my husband

 

was out of town on business, which was probably a good thing because even though it was just the "last little annoyance" it was the "last one after all the other ones" and we had already had them not sign documents we returned/keep the closing costs and the next payment while telling us we needed to start all over again - argh! - and his head was beyond thermonuclear by that point.

He was worthy and I was glad we don't own guns! -- lol! - plus being in another state gave him time to calm down a little.

The thing was, the *people* I dealt with were generally nice with a few exceptions. *I* lost my temper at one lady, and that bit me for months afterwards (which is when they started to "lose" my authorization to discuss Over and Over and OVER again). The insult to my husband's injury: he is a finance guy, so this was humiliating for him.



And I really believe if the people involved *could* have fixed it, they would have. We were complicated. (Hint: never again 203k loan!) And the longer it dragged on, the more they just wanted us to go away - except I wouldn't. I'm stubborn to the point of stupid sometimes. (sigh)

So it is okay. I am still trying to "just be happy" - part of me is always waiting for the next shoe to drop, because they were coming down so hard for so long, but in theory, it is over...and now, I want the experience to help other people.

If I have to suffer this type of crap, it better benefit other people. (My philosophy, anyway - lol!)

So again, - it is a message board, and I hope you feel safe here.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 12:18 PM

23. But but but ... small government ! Miracle of the Free Market ! Nanny State ! FREEEEEEDUUUUUMB !!!

Glad you don't buy any of that.

And MUCH kudos to you !!

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Response to eppur_se_muova (Reply #23)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:38 PM

35. Thank you! I love my FHA person. Literally adore her.

 

Their office is in Oklahoma, and she lives in the town that got hit by the tornados earlier this year.

She was also *very* professional, and if we hadn't been on target, we would have been toast. But bless their hearts, they documented everything, and since we were telling the truth, we won!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 12:26 PM

25. Great news.

To everybody. When you talk to someone in a business, a bank, or the government, memorialize your communication by sending a confirmation letter. Just start it with "This is to confirm that on such and such a date, I spoke to the name of the person you talked to at the company you called. And continue from there.

Make a copy of your letter and put it in a file folder in a box or file cabinet.

Keep it and don't throw it away until you are sure no dispute will arise about the agreement you just entered into.

When your record is crucial, stamp an envelope and send your letter registered mail.

You can do this by e-mail, but I don't like it as much. If you do it by e-mail, you probably should keep a hard copy.

This is very simple, but makes it possible to establish facts if you have a disagreement.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #25)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:41 PM

39. Email was what saved us. At one point they didn't want to email with us anymore

 

because they knew I was keeping *everything* (which I was very blunt about).

I also scanned everything into PDF format, which made life easier when we were shipping stuff off to different people.

And we got to the point where anything we sent them went overnight UPS so we could "prove" they had received it.

They were losing paperwork that was hand delivered. It was...unbelievable.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 12:52 PM

28. As you indicate, you are not the only one to face the criminal banking industry.

Few people have your tenacity, resources, and cultural capital to navigate a war against these monsters. Congratulations on nailing them with documentation!

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Response to LuckyLib (Reply #28)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:10 PM

30. Thank you - the stupid part was, when we saw THEIR documentation,

 

it backed up everything we said. One of my favorite parts - "Received documentation." then a few days later "Recommend proceed with foreclosure" (this was the first one) then a few days later "Explained to client representative foreclosed because no documentation received" - DUDE!!! You just documented you received the documentation, but you keep LOSING IT.

ARGH!!! Lol!

And this guy named Jeff - well, he really helped make it happen: he explained the whole thing was my fault because of our "failure to follow simple instructions" -- at which point I went all Anal Retentive on them.

"Failure to follow simple instructions -- " still infuriates me three years later.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:11 PM

31. Outstanding!

Thank you for posting. What accomplishments!

I especially love your highlighting, so caring about, the benefits to others.

Aloha IdaBriggs.

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Response to mahina (Reply #31)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:23 PM

32. Aloha mahina. You make me blush.

 

I won't lie - I was MAD about this stuff. I told our attorney, "we have the money, we are more than well qualified, we have no debt, we have documented everything - if they are doing this to US, what are they doing to everyone else?"

I still didn't expect them to "outsource the entire department" though. I feel a little guilty about that (except I *know* they were doing it to other people, too, but still I probably had something to do with that - I could be wrong....).

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:38 PM

36. Glorious Victory! If you could share your skills with others..change might happen.

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Response to joanbarnes (Reply #36)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:45 PM

42. Big Advice: Escalate to the Regulators.

 

I am told each agency has one. The local people were not much help, but once I found the right person at FHA, life got better. Okay, she was getting ignored, and she had escalated up two levels before I went thermonuclear with the 21 binders, but it worked out, and she really knew what she was doing.



Also, document EVERYTHING. It was a HUGE pain, but it was what saved us. I was able to say, "look, says here this happened, then a week later, says the opposite" and I did that over and over again.

Plus I started reading the stupid banking rules. It was crazy.

But it is OVER and I WON - woo hoo!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:38 PM

37. I am betting the bank was Bank of America...

would love to know if I am right.

Your experience shows how damn difficult it is to avoid getting robbed of a home.
And how much energy it takes.
Bravo on you!
.. .....

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #37)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:56 PM

46. We had a different problem with them with our original house.

 

I'll PM you the name.

And thank you!!!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:40 PM

38. Congratulations on winning your battle with the enemy! nt

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Response to Zorra (Reply #38)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:55 PM

45. Thank you!

 

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:43 PM

40. as someone with Friedrich's Ataxia running very much through my family-

 

#2 is special to me.

Although I understand #3 was the crux of your post

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Response to KittyWampus (Reply #40)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:52 PM

43. I am sorry. (hug)

 

None of the children in the project had that particular diagnosis.



And the children with specific *genetic* issues did not see as "much" of an improvement, if any at all. (This part sucked.)

I wish I had better news for you.

There is still so much work to be done....

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:43 PM

41. I am happy for you but

I know others who did not have the skills and determination you have and they lost.

I know this must have been an awful process for you but how GREAT IS IT that you beat them at their own game??

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Response to Phentex (Reply #41)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 01:55 PM

44. I am the only person I know who hasn't lost.

 

It is scary and humbling.

We were weeks away from being removed from our home after spending $36,000 in attorney fees and bloody well BEGGING them to fix the problem before we had that first "real victory" as reported by FHA initial investigation.

I honestly lost track of the number of times they "lost" my authorization to discuss the account.

But I won. When I finish recovering, I need to help make sure more people do, too.

Thank you!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 02:02 PM

47. I'm so happy for you!

 

We were lucky. I have talked to dozens of people who gave up, lost their homes, had their credit destroyed, and finally walked away because there was nothing else they could think of to do, and they needed to move on with their lives.


Raises hand ... too late for me, but I'm glad SOMEONE won. Please tell me it was Bank of America. That would make me even happier.

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Response to Autumn Colors (Reply #47)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 02:05 PM

48. It wasn't. I'm sorry.

 

We have our own little horror story about THEM - they bought the people who bought the people who bought the people who own our original mortgage. I join you in your hatred of them, but they aren't the ones we just won against.

I am so sorry for what you went through - I *know* how impossible the banks were making things.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 07:40 PM

57. I'm all verklempt now.. thanks Ida

for your long detailed arduous journey that resulted in Victory for your famiily!

And, props to the Gov Worker who is sadly furloughed right now because of US terrorists inside the Gov.

To IdaBriggs for being so tenacious and detail oriented.. I love it!

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Response to Cha (Reply #57)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 07:52 PM

58. Thank you so much!

 

I am still trying to convince myself we are REALLY done! Lol

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #58)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 08:04 PM

63. I bet.. I know how that goes somewhat. You

work so long for something that when it's over you have to remind yourself.. You Did It!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 08:43 PM

64. You handled this perfectly.

You were right to take the fight to the regulators. The more regulators and agencies that you deal with, the better. Sic all of them on the bank (or the utility company, or the shitty contractor, or whatever you are having a problem with).

I cannot believe how long this took you, but damn, you did it!

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Response to Curmudgeoness (Reply #64)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 05:35 AM

73. Thank you - and neither could we!

 

We kept hearing "next week" so many times, it became a running joke.

One of the people at the bank said he thought our account was cursed because in his entire career he had NEVER seen anything quite like it.

We dealt with (not kidding) FOUR different attorneys on our side, one of whom ended up in a drug rehab situation. And our last attorney (who was awesome) started with "well, this looks like a completely easy case that should be settled with a reasonable negotiation" and I honestly just started laughing in a near hysterical way because it was MARCH OF 2012 by then, and yeah, we had thought that, too, a whole bunch of times.

Sigh.

But it's done now! (Although I need to follow up to make sure they finish with the credit clean up - they did through December 2012 but wanted to wait until the documents were finalized to do the rest of this year.)

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 08:51 PM

65. Okay, but the bank should face punishment, too.

Something like 10 times the amount of your mortgage might make them really try to play by the rules. They would probably pay the FHA or HUD, not you. No, the aggrieved party wouldn't get any money out of them. The overseers, though, might get something. I'd be okay with that because it would give the regulators motivation to go after the banks again and again. If the bank pays enough that the incident hurts them more than they would profit by getting away with violating the law, then the financial arithmetic would tell them to play fair in the future.

Sadly for us humans, the corporations seldom take a hard financial hit for their bad behavior. The banks get away with this kind of thing far more often than not. It might take fines of 100 times the mortgage amount involved to get them to change their behavior.

I expect, though, that their only loss is in not winning. They will calculate that one time getting away with it will cover this loss and continue on cheating customers and ignoring laws they don't like.

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Response to tclambert (Reply #65)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 05:42 AM

74. The HUD auditor told us that when they get caught

 

they consider the small fines part of the cost of doing business, and nothing changes. (This was an "all of them" not ours in particular.)

And the scam they were pulling on us was profitable. Add tens of thousands of dollars in fees, etc., don't complete the modification process, then get reimbursed by HUD because the mortgage people are deadbeats, adding an instant $100K to the cash flow bottom line, repeat 50 times a week for $5M.

All they had to do was "be incompetent."

My husband and I are both employed by corporate America. Business does not do things unless it is profitable, and this is obviously pretty damn profitable.

We had a lot of time to think about it.

Oh, and the fine would have been 3x the scam amount if caught BUT at one point they did a "full credit bid" so we would walk away (except we didn't - ha!).

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 09:15 PM

66. rec number 100! Yeah!

Sure would like to know what specific bank...so I know to steer clear.


Thank god you're OCD and not ADD!!!! I wish everyone who has such trouble could navigate like you did!

Awesome!!!!

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Response to BlancheSplanchnik (Reply #66)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 05:44 AM

75. I sent you a PM.

 

And thank you!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 09:32 PM

67. Bravo, Bravo. It can be done!

Our 86 year old aunt and her son beat Bank of America. Case dropped. Our cousin kept every piece of documentation regarding the issue. BofA backed down.

I have lots of documents, just don't know where they all are.

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Response to mountain grammy (Reply #67)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 05:47 AM

76. Woo hoo! Yeah for your aunt and cousin!

 

And the organization of paperwork was THE WORST.

Funny side note - I made copies at different points at four different copy places - and at every single one met people who had gone through similar trials -- and lost.

It was mind boggling how common this experience has become.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Fri Oct 11, 2013, 09:38 PM

68. (( Ida ))

,

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Response to blm (Reply #68)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 05:48 AM

77. Back at you.

 

Thank you!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 03:36 AM

69. Congratulations, and good to hear it!

Its always nice to hear that hard work and documentation can pay off.

The only similar circumstance I've had is following a small basement fire years ago, where our insurance company repeatedly and at length was impossible to deal with. We probably would have settled for a small amount if we could have just moved back in and done the work ourselves, but that was never even given as an option; it was months of living at a hotel and a rental while they drug their heels and screwed over contractors, all personal property had to be documented and destroyed, there were mountains of paperwork and hundreds of phone calls (not one of them offering to settle), and they wound up paying something like 150k total for a stupid little fire. I wouldn't deal with those guys again for anything. What kind of company goes so far out of its way to waste money and alienate customers?

Whenever anyone talks about the "efficiency of the private markets" I think about that.

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Response to bhikkhu (Reply #69)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 05:51 AM

78. Thank you. "Stubborn" kicked in, too.

 

And your story - WOW. That sounds awful! Glad you handled it so well, but sorry you had to go through it!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 03:57 AM

70. I am well and truly impressed, Ida. Gods bless you and your husband for fighting the good fight...

.... and beating the bastards at their own game.

Hekate

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Response to Hekate (Reply #70)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 05:57 AM

80. Thank you, Hekate.

 

It wasn't easy, and the FHA person who did the investigation (and the HUD auditor who told us to file a complaint) really was the person who saved us.

When she told me the results / decision, I cried. I kept saying, "I told you I was telling the truth, I told you I was telling the truth..." And she said, yes, it was all documented.

(We knew it was documented because of the court case - they had provided a dump of the data not actually expecting anyone to read it, and one of the issues was that I actually did, and it said what we said it did, not what their attorney tried to cherry pick.)

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 04:24 AM

71. it has already been posted -

bravissimo! go out and celebrate and take some good deep breaths. you done great!

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Response to hopemountain (Reply #71)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 05:58 AM

81. Thank you!

 

And at the

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 04:57 AM

72. Wonderful, wonderful!

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Response to juajen (Reply #72)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 06:00 AM

82. Thank you - and I love your sig line.

 

I still have him in my email contacts; he was a good man and a good friend.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 05:57 AM

79. Congrats! I hope you got your attorney's fees back in the settlement. n/t

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Response to cui bono (Reply #79)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 06:05 AM

83. They don't do it that way (especially since they think we should have

 

come to them in the first place instead of dealing with attorneys). Our first complaint really nothing seemed to happen, although later I learned behind the scenes things did, and they thought it was done, so we were closed, and then re-opened when I contacted them again.

The bank got spanked hard, and the attorney fees were compensated with that bucket.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #83)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 06:12 AM

84. Hm, so did you still have to pay the entire loan of the house?

I'm just worried that even though you got to keep your house that you paid extra for it, not to mention all the time and energy you had to put into it.

Did the bank get fined at least?

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Response to cui bono (Reply #84)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 06:52 AM

85. I was typing a long reply, then my computer glitched.

 

Which made me realize I probably shouldn't post the specific details. Like I said, we did NOT get a free house, although they were ordered to do things they didn't like to make us whole. I don't know if they were fined, but I do know that last month the entire department was outsourced, and they now have a third party performing the function. I suspect (but have no proof) that we were one of the many people whose stories influenced that decision. Those things don't usually happen without incentives involving money somewhere, so .... ?

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #85)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 02:24 PM

90. I don't want you to divulge more than you're comfortable with

I was really just wondering if after all that time and effort you put in if it also cost you that much more money just to keep what was rightfully "yours" (albeit with a lien) to begin with. That's the problem. Most people can't afford that, nor are able to put in the work you did and so banks know they can just bully people.

This has been going on so long now, when the hell are the authorities going to step in and make some serious indictments and prosecutions?

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Response to cui bono (Reply #90)

Sun Oct 13, 2013, 10:14 AM

99. Your point about the value of the house was one of the

 

reasons we kept being advised to "walk away" - we bought right before the housing market crashed, so our house was under water within the first year, not including the "unplanned extra" money we spent as we discovered more things that had to be fixed (replaced entire plumbing, replaced entire electrical, etc.) once the walls started coming down and we discovered just how smart we weren't. I suspect this was why the original refinance was delayed until disaster was official, but again, no proof.

If you had told us we would end up spending $36K in attorney bills at the outset, we probably would have walked away.

Or not. I am kind of stupid stubborn.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 07:54 AM

86. Sweet, I love a happy ending.

 

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Response to Rebellious Republican (Reply #86)

Sun Oct 13, 2013, 07:38 AM

92. Thank you!

 

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 09:32 AM

87. Great job! And thank you especially for #2

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Response to LiberalLoner (Reply #87)

Sun Oct 13, 2013, 07:41 AM

93. Thank you - and you are welcome!

 

#2 is a big deal and I am proud of it, but it is A LOT of work.

And there is a ton of work to do still....sigh.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 09:43 AM

88. Like many others on this thread

I am impressed with your bank accomplishment. I am ever grateful for #2 though, as my daughter is dying from Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type I. She has defied odds and seen her 2nd birthday, and we hold out hope that Dr. Kaspar in Columbus can see through the experimental genetic therapy that may save her life someday.

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Response to hotrod0808 (Reply #88)

Sun Oct 13, 2013, 07:48 AM

94. Thank you, and I am so very, very sorry.

 

Please PM if you would like more information about the project. None of the children in it have your daughter's specific diagnosis, but "failure to thrive" improves generically for the 83% who respond 74% of the time (if that makes sense?) which may help her strength/stamina issues while she fights ...

I am so sorry. I wish I could help, but other than prayer, this type of information is all I can give you.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Reply #94)

Sun Oct 13, 2013, 11:34 PM

100. Thank you so much.

I surely will in the very near future.

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sat Oct 12, 2013, 10:22 AM

89. Excellent work, and congratulations!

I know exactly what you're talking about when it comes to insanely obsessive documentation. One of my kids needed recurring medical treatment for a couple of years, and the insurance company kept trying to deny the claims. Every. Single. Month. To make matters more fun, the ins. co. (a very well-known huge one) would create a new "customer number" for every single claim. So every letter I wrote them had to have the correct new number on it, and I had a separate file folder for each separate claim. It was maddening keeping up with all the paperwork, holding the medical providers at bay while I waited for the insurance checks to arrive, and making sure each separate "account" was resolved.

They paid all the claims, but it took numerous phone calls and letters from me, plus my nutcase Ninja detailed record-keeping (a whole file drawer full by the time we were done) -- all in the days before I had a computer of my own. I wasted so many hours on that crap, but they didn't cheat us out of a single penny.

What infuriated me was that this was obviously their standard operating procedure, to deny legitimate claims by policyholders -- claims for the much-needed treatment of an innocent CHILD in this case! Bastards. The foot-dragging, labyrinthine tracking procedures, and resistance at every turn would discourage many people. But I had two things going for me: I was too poor to lose the monthly fights, and I am a maniacal record-keeper and documenter. They messed with the wrong guy.

Sometimes I wonder if businesses test you to find out how easy a mark you are. For example, I once received a credit card "offer" -- from a real bank -- using the account number from a card I'd closed out a couple of years earlier. I thought the number looked familiar, and when I looked in my files, sure enough, they were trying to get me to sign up for a credit card with the exact same account number from the old defunct card. I wrote them politely declining, and stated the reason why. I never heard from them again, and in fact I never get credit card offers any more. (I'm what they call in the industry a "deadbeat" -- I pay off my account every month!)

I've often wondered if there is a secret code somewhere in my Permanent Credit Record, so that I'm identified as a poor target for corporate rip-off artists. They can try, but it'll take a lot for them to pull the wool over my eyes.

Fortunately I haven't encountered the kind of mortgage nightmare that you did. It sounds somewhat like an identity theft case -- very time consuming and draining. I'm glad you won. I'm sorry there are so many others who've been ground up by the machinery of the rapacious banksters.

This kind of story is one of the main reasons I am a credit union customer and will never do business with a bank unless I absolutely have to.

Oh, and by the way, thanks for your hard work and dedication on behalf of kids with neuromuscular disorders, too.

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Response to klook (Reply #89)

Sun Oct 13, 2013, 07:50 AM

95. Thank you and WOW - impressive!!!

 

I loved your story, even while I hated the need for It.

This is for you!!!

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sun Oct 13, 2013, 08:16 AM

96. Wealways knew you were special.

Congratulations on beating the big guys.

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Response to Skidmore (Reply #96)

Sun Oct 13, 2013, 09:15 AM

97. Thank you!

 

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Response to IdaBriggs (Original post)

Sun Oct 13, 2013, 09:43 AM

98. Congratulations.

Really sorry to read of your ordeal, but congratulations for making it to the other side.

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Response to mattclearing (Reply #98)

Mon Oct 14, 2013, 07:40 AM

101. Thank you!

 

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