Good News: On Friday, Jan 7, 2011, I received an unexpected Fed-Ex pkg from Chase not knowing if it was a foreclosure packet or modification agreement, good news, it was a modification agreement, YEAH!!!!! Bad News: But...... as I read the agreement, I realized there wasn't a lot to be happy about. I have been diligently working with Chase for 1 1/2 years now on the modification process; including being declined after 8 months of attempting a HAMP modification only to be told that "the investor is not participating." I have a USDA loan which is a rural loan, ironic how a government loan was not allowed to be modified. Chase suggested I try again through their in-house program. After looking at the terms of other modifications I feel like my modification was done just to make Chase's numbers look better statistically for approving modifications. Although I am greatful to have been approved, the change is minor. Only $155 less than my regular mort. payment. OK, it might pay the electric bill and a tank of gas. Basically, they just lowered my interest rate- it went from 5.5 to 4.5%. I am jealous of those lucky people who got graduated interest rates capping at 4.5). Also, they used my highest recent paycheck which fluctuates some when I pick up extra hours. My balance is about $300,000, my payment went from $1939 to $1787 ish; this is not enough to help me stablize and prevent potential future problems. Also, because I had no idea the agreement was coming or that I was approved, I had just the day before made a partial payment to Chase of $1300 which I could have used towards my bills or car- just needed to put in a new engine and it is still not smogged so who knows how much more I will need to pay to have transportation. Darn it!! They wouldn't refund that amount. I wish I had found this site sooner, I would not have made those partial payments after reading a post about the negatives but I was trying to show good faith to Chase.
I wanted to get the modification adjusted to a more reasonable amount and so I have spent hours on the phone this week trying to talk to my relationship manager, who I finally found out today, was on vacation till next week; his supervisor was "in a supervisor's meeting and can't talk". Yesterday, another rel. manager (Mark) told me there was nothing else that could be done; "they go by your credit report, your income, your bills, etc. and a supervisor won't be able to help change it." On Tuesday, Jan 11, I spent hours trying to get through but there was a "system problem" and had to wait till yesterday. (Monday, I had a fever and only attempted to call a few times.) Today, I went to a Chase Bank Branch to phone from their office to see if they could get me to a higher up. I was there on the phone for AN HOUR, got disconnected at one point, was shuffled around numerous times, told about the "supervisor meeting" and my rel. manager (Josh) being on vacation (he probably really needs one having to deal with the stressed mortgage holders all day) and once again told they couldn't make any changes. I would have to make a decision to either decline it and then REAPPLY ALL OVER AGAIN WITH NO GUARANTEE THAT I WOULD BE APPROVED AGAIN; and I would have to worry about possible foreclosure fees, etc. Not being able to get through to anyone with any clout (the UNDERWRITERS are like a secret society, you can call them or talk with them, the Rel. Managers say "we don't have their phone number, we can only email them") One Chase rep told me today that the Underwriters make the decision, another rep told me the relationship managers make the decisions and the underwriters just approve.
I feel like I was pretty much forced to make this very important decision in a time crunch without the ability to talk with appropriate higher up supervisor. I was denied the chance to ask "what is the chance that it would be denied?", can you refigure the numbers using a more normal pay period (they used a very high $ month that does not occur that often), blah blah blah. So with time ticking away, and the FedEx truck scheduled to leave soon, I had to sign and send off the lousy modification agreement. I can't believe I spent all this time, energy, aggravation, stress on this for 1 1/2 years with such a miniscule change to my mortgage. I am happy, though, that for now, my house will not be added to a foreclosure list, and that I have one month in which I do not have to make a payment.