In 2002 we refinanced our home through CitiFinancial. In May 2003 we were hit by a tornado and had $39,000 damages. Our basement was flooded. We filed claims with our homeowner's insurance. They began to pay us and we started to have repairs done. One check was for $11,000 made payable to me and my husband (since we paid our insurance premiums direct and not through our mortgage co.) with a notation of CitiFinancial on the side, for us to show the manager and have him sign off that we were having repairs made.
(FEMA had come in and inspected our home and said it was not safe for me to be inside since I have Asthma-due to the amount of water damage in the basement. He said it needed to be repaired ASAP and the wet carpet removed because mold and mildew were getting bad and it could be fatal to me.)**
Citifinancial's manager was rude to me and yelled at me and took the check from my hands (with people all around the office seeing this) and said he was going to deposit the check into Citifinancial accounts. (My husband and I had already signed it since we were on our way to the bank to deposit it so the windows could be ordered and the new carpet could be ordered and we had to pay a deposit to get this work started.)
The manager then called our insurance company and yelled at our agent and demanded that they pay the money to CitiFinancial. She explained to him that 'we were the insured' and had to get the repairs done, and the only reason CitiFinancial was noted on the check was because the repairs were over $5,000 and the law states we have to notify the mortgage company of repairs being done. (After this incident, our homeowner's insurance canceled us and said they would not be able to cover us any more.) Leaving us with $22,000 damages to pay for ourselves.
Citi's manager took the check and deposited it in CitiFinancial's account. He refused to give me a phone number for his Supervisor and told me my mortgage was no longer in his office. (We tried to get an extension of payments for 2 or 3 months due to tornado damage.) He held the money from May 2003 until August 2003. I had to get one of the contractor's to go to CitiFinancial with me to get $5,000 released to order the custom built windows we needed.
We had to try to pay for repairs ourselves. (I was also disabled in June 2003 due to a work related accident.)We used up our savings and sold some furniture to get repairs done.
Then in August 2003 I received a phone call from a girl in CitiFinancial's office telling me that she could lose her job if the manager knew she had called me, but she had to let me know what was 'going on'. She said our mortgage had been there all along and he was lying to us. She was sure he was trying to foreclose on us. We had to file Bankruptcy in Nov. 2003 to stop them.
Then in May 2004, CitiFinancial called us and said they were going to reduce our interest from 14.9% (it was supposed to be 13% but it was changed after we signed the paperwork to 14.9%), to 6% and reduce our monthly payments from $1533 to $854 a month. We waited from May 2004 until July 2004 and still no paperwork. They tried to Foreclose on us again. We had to file Bankruptcy again to stop it. We paid payments through Chapter 13 through July 2005. CitiFinancial called us and said we were 'current on our payments' and they would work with us and we could make payments to them. We let our Bankruptcy be dismissed and tried to pay CitiFinancial again.
We were approved to refinance and CitiFinancial gave us three different payoffs, ranging from $73,000 to $144,000. The man on the phone said he was in their Loss Mitigation department and said 'they would not allow us to refinance with anyone else'. I told him he was not 'God' and could not control us or what we did. He was rude, yelled at me and said 'we just needed to let them have our home and be done with it.' He caused us to not be able to refinance. The lender we were trying to use said he had never seen such a mess, and they could not refinance us unless we could get a legitimate payoff. That was in October and November 2005. They continued to transfer our mortgage again.
All this time since July 2005, they refused to accept our payments stating that 'our mortgage was a mess and they could not accept a payment until it was corrected because the money would sit in a floating account until it was corrected.' I tried to call every office from Coppel, Texas to Levittown, PA to Hanover, MD and was told the same thing.
(One bookkeeper sent me copies of our records and told me to get a lawyer because she had sent through more than 3 directives to correct our mortgage paperwork. Money was posted in 2005 that was paid through our Bankruptcy and then removed and put in their pocket in interest posted prior to our Bankruptcy filed Nov. 2003 and right after the tornado hit in May 2003.) We were current at that time, so there was no interest due. All this time we were still trying to get our home repaired little by little.
In March 2006 we hired a lawyer who contacted them by phone and letters disputing the amounts they were trying to charge us ($10,000 in legal fees) and stating we were in arrears over $25,000. He told them the fees were unreasonable and they had refused to accept payments and the amounts were wrong. A woman in their Loss Mitigation Department said she was going to 'put our mortgage on hold' due to our property dispute with people we had already paid off and CitiFinancial could not Foreclose on us while we were in the property dispute lawsuit. Our lawyer tried to get them to accept $4,000 on our mortgage and she said it would be put on hold.
We did not hear anything else from them after May 2006 and our lawyer considered the matter settled.
Then in April 2007 they tried to Foreclose again and tried to say we were in arrears $41,000. We had to file Bankruptcy again to stop it. They did not even bother to send a lawyer or attend the Meeting of Creditors to discuss working out our mortgage. They did not contact our lawyer. We had to let Bankruptcy dismiss and now again are trying to get this worked out.
I talked with THEIR attorney this week and he said He will try to get us a legitimate payoff. He said they are preparing to try to Foreclose on us again.
******BY THE WAY, WE STILL HAVE DAMAGES FROM THE TORNADO IN 2003 TO OUR ROOF WHICH NOW IS LEAKING INTO THE INSIDE CAUSING MORE DAMAGE WHICH WILL COST $15,000 AND THE DECK $13,000, $1,000 CONCRETE WORK (WHICH IS $29,000 MORE DAMAGE ADDED TO THE $22,000 WE GOT STUCK WITH IN 2003, this is a total now of $51,000 damages for us to pay.)
We can't refinance due to the property dispute, or without a 'legitimate payoff quote'. With all the damages we had, it's taken all we had to get repairs done. CitiFinancial will not take responsibility for their actions or their employees actions. Someone in authority needs to.
I will not give up my home, and my husband and I will fight with everything we have to see Justice done. CitiFinancial and Citi Group were sued by the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in May 2004 or 2005 for Predatory Lending and CitiFinancial had to pay millions. I believe they need to be sued again and fined hundreds of millions.
We all need to stick together and contact the Federal Reserve Board and the State Comptroller's office of each individual State involved. I have already talked with a lawyer and I am going to bring it to his attention about a Class Action Lawsuit.
CitiFinancial has to be stopped. They have hurt thousands and thousands of people, taken homes they had no right to, caused people to be suicidal and destroyed families. They are greedy, hateful, and rude and obviously 'train their employees' to be the same.
(I spoke with a woman in their Coppel, Tx office two days ago, and she did not know anything about our mortgage, yet had sent a letter to us to 'Reinstatement, Adjustment of Terms, Adjustment of Loan, etc.,etc. I'm sure you all have gotten their form letter sent through the mail.) She then proceeded to tell me I needed to talk with their Legal Department, but could not give me a number to call them. She then gave me the name of the same lawyer I have talked to for the past 2 years. In unity we can prevail. We cannot be 'faint of heart', and have to persevere. We have to be diligent and fight for our homes and our families.
I am willing to talk with anyone who wants to get involved with this, and I have access to the best attorneys in the USA.