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Washington Mutual / Unethical practices and buying out mortgages

1 United States Review updated:

I bought my house in 1999. I setup automatic payments well in excess of the required payments thru my online payment system at my local bank. In 2002 Washington Mutual bought out the loan, but my automatic payments kept getting cashed. In December 2005 WaMu decided to change the delivery address of the payments, even though they were being made electronically, they rejected payment and tried once to charge late fees. I called, complained and got it fixed. This July 12, 2007 my mortgage payment was once again rejected by WaMu, 4 days before the deadline. My bank tried to call WaMu and correct the error but WaMu has a policy of not talking to a "3rd party" . Clearly a ploy to avoid fixing the error in time to clear the payment. Both my bank and WaMu chose to send snail mail, neither calling nor e-mailing to notify me of the "mistake". WaMu claimed in writing, that I just plain did not pay this month. My bank claims, on paper, "the payment was refused by the payee" and "Payee would not speak to a third party" despite the whole system insisting on a phone number, mailing address, and account number to set it up. WaMu changed the account number by 2 digits, knew that was why the rejected it, and proceeded to make sure there was no way to correct for the problem in time! Clearly intentional negligence on their part. I talked to one Rebecca K. (she refused to give her last name, when I complained and she insisted that they were in the right, and the $36.11 late fee could not be waived because of "policy". Further she had the gall to insist I pay NOW, the evening their letter arrived, and only pay an extra $15 for telephone payment! Clearly policies designed to allow unethical practices skirting the law, and upping profit margins. These little dirty tricks, it seems have thru fine print and legal lobbying been made less than illegal. But I contend clearly remain unethical, especially for a company whose CEO and Chairman of the board, Kerry K. Killinger , was quoted only last April in Fortune as saying with regard to ethics ' I try to do the right thing and use the test of "Am I comfortable with having my mother read this in tomorrow's newspaper?" ' Hmnnn, this is not the Seatle Times, nor the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (I found two addresses for him) but it could be, and mom could be reading of it in the morning.

WaMu's instance of this scam aside, unethical practices in banking and credit cards seems to have become the standard or higher profits rather than the rope that hangs them. I've had similar issues thru assorted credit cards and the banks that bought out credit card accounts in the past. Generally I report them to BBB or States Attorney General in their base state then close the account and never do business with them again. My mortgage is clearly a bigger task, since I am forced to refinance and have no guarantee they won't simply buy out the mortgage again as they keep "expanding".

Wider than just my bank, I think my congressman, and yours, and everyones need to hear a few words about ethics and the lending industry from everyone with a mortgage, home loan, or a credit card. I found this site useful in locating and contacting my representatives: http://www.senate.gov/ just pick your state and detail address out and follow links until you find a means of contact that works for you.

It is also useful to find the state of incorporation for your problem bank, and either contact the Better Business Bureau in that state and/or the State Attorney General with your complaints. You'll find you are only one of many with similar issues. Companies that pull such trickery, seem to do it by policy not by mistake.

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Comments

  • Ho
      31st of Jul, 2007
    0 Votes

    It is YOUR responsibility to properly address automatic payments with your bank. When your loan was sold you were notified 30days in advance, you had plenty of time to make all the necessary adjustments. You were also advised that if you made a payment after or during the transfer process to the original loan underwriter would apply the payment with out penalty to you. This is required by law. So stop the BS. Quit looking for some one to handle your affairs and place blame.

  • Ka
      10th of Aug, 2007
    0 Votes

    WE had a 2nd home that was being rented out, we were scammed by the guy renting the home and then he didnt pay anymore and we evicted him. Due to the real estate market I called WAMU and let them know that I had the house up for sale as I am an Agent and that I wouldl like the paperwork for a short sale. I was told by their Customer Service that they would be sending this to me. After 1 month and numerous calls I still haven't received the paperwork. I now have an active buyer and I again call and ask letting them know I have a buyer and need the short sale paperwork... nothing... I called every day the next week which is last week in june only to be told to fax the contract to the customer service agent and they will look at it. So I do, and guess what nothing, I get a phone call from WAMU stating I am late on payments?? I try to explain what I am doing as at this point I need to sell home, I have active buyer pre-approved no contingencies and they want house... The WAMU agent puts me on hold, comes back to the line about 7 minutes later only to call me a liar and that they have no record of me ever calling into WAMU and by the way... When am I paying this? Well we go back and forth with nothing resolved and no paper work and no knowledge of me calling and at this time, no contact was ever faxed either so they say... What a joke. The next day I get a letter from WAMU stating they are sending someone out if I don't contact them about the vacant house. They need to assure its safe??? I call again letting them know yes the house is vacant its for sale the same story about short sale. Nothing... A couple days later I go by my rental property to show it to another potential client as now previous one is getting ready to pull the contract only to find out that WAMU sent in an independent company who drilled a whole in my back door of the home, left every door in the house unlocked and the door to the garage open with the air running for the last 3 days in 100 degree weather and now I am missing garage door openers, two TV and the surround sound stereo system. What a crock that is... Of course no one knows anything, but when I called into Customer Service and explain what happened and that they don't have a right to go into my home, I am called a liar again and that they can go into my house whenever they want its in the mortgage contract, by the way I am 2 months late now and no paperwork has been giving to me. So I explained again that they are holding me up its been days now with no response on the contract, the buyers are getting anxious, please make a decision. I again am told that I never sent them anything. While I was on the phone with Customer Service, I again fax over contract to WAMU.

    I am told they will get back in touch with me "Shortley". Well were into August and I have lost my buyers, I have a hole in my back door, missing items from the house that was to be sold with it and no one can do anything about it. What A CROCK!! I could go on and on but I think you see the crap going on.

  • Ga
      31st of Jan, 2008
    0 Votes

    To everyone who is having problems with WAMU:

    I have also had some problems and did some research. You can actually report them to the feds and they will investigate. Though it takes a little while - it WILL be helpful if everyone who has a complaint contacts them.

    You should contact:

    San Francisco Regional Office

    Pacific Plaza
    2001 Junipero Serra Boulevard, Suite 650
    Daly City, California 94014-1976
    Telephone: (650) 746-7000
    Fax: (650) 746-7001

    Mail: P.O. Box 7165
    San Francisco, California 94120-7165

    http://www.ots.treas.gov/pagehtml.cfm?catnumber=81

    Good luck with your problems in getting them resolved!

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