How to lose customers

Dining room of typical house.  March, 2011 8:30PM PST

Phone:  Ring.  Ring.  Ring.

<Toshio picks up phone>

Toshio: Hello?

BoA_human1: Hello, this is Lewis at Bank of America Home Loans, calling about your account.  Can you give me the last four digits of your social security number to verify your loan?

Toshio: Can I call you back to verify you are actually from Bank of America?

BoA_human1: Yes.  You can call 1-800-669-0102.

Toshio: And what’s your name again?

BoA_human1: Lewis.  But you can actually talk to anyone here and they’ll have this information and be able to talk to you.

Toshio: Thanks.

<Toshio hangs up the phone.  Dials 1-800-669-0102>

BoA_automated_system:  Thank you for calling BAC Home loan servicing LP, the Bank of America company that services your home loan.  Para español, por favor, pressione número uno.  We are a debt collector.  Please enter or say your account number.

<Toshio enters in the digits of his account number>

Phone:  Beep beep beep beep beep.

BoA_automated_system:  Okay [digit][digit][digit][digit], is that right?

Toshio: Yes.

BoA_automated_system: Are you an agent calling on behalf of a customer

Toshio: No.

BoA_automated_system: If you are calling to confirm if your payment has been recieved press 1 now.  If you would like to pay by phone press 2 now.  If you are calling to tell us when you will make a payment press 3 now.

<Toshio ….  Pause… Finally hits star>

BoA_automated_system: Do you want the main menu?

Toshio: yes

BoA_automated_system: Ring.  Ring.

BoA_human2: Hello, Home Retention, this is Malik can I get the last four digits of your social security number to verify your identity?

Toshio: [digit] [digit] [digit] [digit]

BoA_human2: Thank you.  I see that your account can only be serviced by the advocacy department and their office closes at 5:00 PM Pacific standard time.  I can give you their number to call back tomorrow.

[...]

 

Date of first contact with HUD approved housing counselor: June 2009

Date of initial packet for eligibility for the Home Affordable Modification Program sent to Bank of America:  November 2009

Date for three trial payments: December 2009, January 2010, February 2010

Date that Bank of America sent us the “Modification Agreement” with new loan terms to sign according to the date on their letter: 19 August 2010

Date we received the “Modification Agreement” from FedEx: 23rd of August, 2010

Date we had to return it by: 29th of August 2010

Number of days spent on the telephone with Bank of America and HUD counselors trying to get answers to why there was a “Deferred Amount” of $11,852.52 : 3 days

Number of unique (does not count being transferred back to a previous phone number) Bank of America phone numbers  transferred to in those 3 days: 23

Number of unique Bank of America Departments contacted by calling those numbers: 9

Date I called Bank of America to find out why we hadn’t gotten new payment coupons or a copy of the “Modification Agreement” that Bank of America had signed: December 2010

Story I got from Advocacy at Bank of America: “The underwriters have to look at the agreement and approve it.”

Information I got from talking to the company in charge of sending and receiving  the Modification Agrement packets whose number was the one given on the Bank of America packet: “The packet you received was the final agreement.  You’re just waiting for Bank of America to sign it and send you back the “Executed Agreement”.  The underwriters have already looked at it so they just need to send you a copy.”

Story I got from Advocacy at Bank of America when I gave them the new information: “It’s with the negotiator.  We’ll have them call you within 5 to 10 business days”.

Date of that phone call: end of December 2010, just before Christmas.

Today’s date: 8 March, 2011

 

If we vote with our wallets….

Then the next time you have to get a loan, ask for a contract clause that says your loan may not be serviced by Bank of America. I was passed between nine different people in Bank of America today trying to get information about the loan paperwork that was sent to me (with a deadline for signing of Sunday). The final person that I talked to said that Bank of America was unable to give me any information about the forms but could have a supervisor talk to me within three business days just to verify that. Since I need to get this loan changed I really don’t have any choice but to sign even though it adds on a balloon payment of $11K at the end of the term for seemingly no reason.

Thanks a lot Bank of America, you are officially the worst financial institution I’ve ever had to deal with.