Over the years I've received countless letters from distressed and desperate consumers seeking much needed guidance to find the proper enforcement agency or experienced attorney that can help them with whatever consumer nightmare they've found themselves caught up in. The complaints and often heart-wrenching stories relate to various consumer issues such as identity theft, abusive debt collectors, mortgage fraud and inaccurate credit reporting. In early September, I received one of these requests for guidance from a distraught woman named Helen.
Helen did nothing wrong yet like many others, woke up to her own nightmare that appears to be an exhaustive mortgage servicing mess ! She learned, like I once did, that her additional principal payments have been unaccounted for...to the tune of an estimated $6,000.00 to date.
Sadly, Helen's story is not at all uncommon. These days it's actually more the norm. More often than not I hear from consumers just how hard it is to find an ear of the proper agency, government entity or law firm that will give them the real help they need to get out of the nightmare they've innocently woken up to.
Today, more than a month after receiving her initial letter, she sent me another disturbing email. It seems, not surprisingly, her continued attempts to find help have been unsuccessful so I'm posting her story here today in hopes that someone will step forward to help her.
Please read her original email below and if you feel you can help Helen or know someone who can, please contact me and I will put you in touch with her!
Dear Denise: I don't know if you can help me or not or lead me in the right direction. I live in the state of New York and own my home there. In July of 2003 we refinanced our home to get a lower rate and to pay bi-weekly to pay off the home sooner. This meant that some months we paid the bi-weekly payment 3 times. Our mortgage broker or whatever you call them was in New York also. They collected the payments and once a month (they) sent a check directly to our mortgage company. Now maybe 2 years ago this agent gave us a new agent for the same company but they are now located in Florida. This year in 2007, (their) payments have been late and not paid to our mortgage company and I had a hard time getting them to pay the late fees (they were responsible for) which some they did not. We are finally up-to-date on the monthly payments but that is not exactly the problem.
The problem is that they are no longer at the address we were given and they do not answer phone calls. The biggest problem is that at least twice a year they have been deducting $836+ extra from my checking account but none of this money has made its way to the mortgage company since July 2003. I have finally contacted them by email and on several occasions asked them for the new address and phone number and also asked them what was happening to the extra money they have collected every year, over $6,000 to date and they have never responded to this question. In May of 2007 I contacted the Attorney General's Office for the State of New York in New York City and I sent a certified letter to the mortgage broker stating that I was going to file a suit for fraud because they fail to provide me with the information I need and have not paid the extra funds against the principle of my mortgage. The letter to the Mortgage company came back undeliverable and the Attorney General forwarded the case to Florida since they now reside there.
Now Florida tells me that they cannot help me because although the company is in their state the property is not. I am in a catch 22 situation and do not know where to turn from here. By the time they are done and my mortgage is paid off they will have over $15,000 of my money. Can you help me or advise me where to turn at this point? I need help and it seems to be no one's job to help. The FBI where I was first told to contact told me I had to go to the Attorney General and the rest is history. If you could at least lead me in the right direction I would be most grateful. Thanking you in advance. Helen
If you can help Helen -please email me