I have a mortgage through Chase that was approved for a HAMP modification about 16 months ago. My interest rate was reduced to 3.125 % and the loan term was extended to 40 years. At the time I signed the agreement, I didn't know that a "Handbook for Servicers of Non-GSE Mortgages" document existed and that the mod I was agreeing to didn't follow it's guidelines.
Fast forward 16 months.... I just reviewed the version of the "Handbook for Servicers of Non-GSE Mortgages" that was in effect back when my loan was being considered for a HAMP modification and here's what it says:
“The interest rate must be fully reduced to 2.0 percent prior to any term extension.”
https://www.hmpadmin.com//portal/programs/docs/hamp_servicer/mhahandbook_40.pdf page 94
My question is, what can I do now? I've submitted a formal dispute letter to Chase. They said they are reviewing it, but since I signed the agreement already, there's probably nothing they can do for me.
The HAMP guidelines seem to be very specific about the reduction of interest before extending the length of the loan. I'm considering hiring an attorney to help with this matter. Do the banks "have to" follow the HAMP guidelines? If they don't (which it appears that didn't in my situation), what options do customers like me have?
Any advice, info is greatly appreciated.