Initial Underwriting Group / Rushed sales, bad customer service, no refunds
Never in my life have I been so confused, mistreated and financially raped by a company. Even AOL's routine double and triple billing wasn't as bad as dealing with IUG. At first glance, this company was EXACTLY what I was looking for and like all things that appear too good to be true, it was.
I'm a native American small business owner located in Maine. I have small town family values and place the safety & happiness of my clients and employees at the top of my daily "To-Do-List". (Second is making a great product and delivering on the promise of great service, third is making money.)
Now, like I said, I thought IUG had exactly what I was looking for, they had a rep call me and wanted me to fill out a form on their website, while still on the phone. I thought I was just getting a pleasant change from the normal humdrum of daily business, now being on the phone and typing & reading all at the same time is hectic at best. They wanted some cash up front to get started after they called again to tell me I had qualified for a $32, 500 small business loan. I was so happy but couldn't come up with the $950 they wanted. So they said they've give me a break, send $400 and they would get the ball rolling. I have a really tight budget but I was able to free up the $400 and send it. Now they send me an email saying that my money was non-refundable and that I had to be incorporated to get the loan. "But you knew I was a sole proprietorship?" To which he replied we'll get you incorporated. Ok I thought, so how much is that? He told me it was about a hundred dollars or so. But I thought this was all included. He told me it is. So why do I pay more? He said I don't, I pay the State. So back to being incorporated, which I'm not and told them so on their OWN application. I spent the day trying to contact them via phone to clear up this situation.
They'd only had my money 10 minutes, what could be the problem? I was asked repeatedly "Are you joking?" by customer support. I tried elevated my complaints to their managers and sent emails to their sales and support email addresses. These were all dismissed by their management staff because I had hit a little checkbox that said I agreed to this BS while I was on the phone and online with their website AT their request.) Not one message for a call-back from a manager was returned. This is getting ridiculous at this point. I check out the SBA website and find some contact info for the company's owner. I tried explaining the situation but to no avail. Again with the checkbox. Then I was told that I had agreed and they had the phone conversation recorded. Ok, how can I get a copy of these recordings? So I mention that my lawyer could obtain copies through the court system. I was then told not to threaten them and they hung up on me. The owner never once would pick up my calls.
I've lost $400 but learned a valuable lesson about Initial Underwriting Group, STAY AWAY.