Iowa officials are back in talks with the nation’s top home mortgage companies, seeking better treatment for homeowners facing possible foreclosure. Under terms of last year’s settlement, Wells Fargo, Bank of America and others agreed to assign a single employee to each borrower seeking a loan modification to help cut through the red tape.
Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller says in many cases, borrowers are still being bounced around. “What sometimes happens is that it’s been changed, they’re not able to get hold of their single point of contact, or the single point of contact isn’t as knowledgeable as he or she should be,” Miller says. “Those are some of the problems we’re trying to remedy.”
Other mortgage companies involved include J.P. Morgan Chase and Citigroup. Another part of the agreement was that the companies would stop foreclosure proceedings once a homeowner has finished the paperwork for a loan modification. Instead, Miller says the banks are asking for more information.
“Sometimes what’s asked for additionally is things that were submitted before or things that should have been known by the servicer to ask in the first review,” Miller says. “We’re trying to deal with that.” The new protections for borrowers are part of a $25-billion settlement reached with the banks in an investigation of shoddy loan foreclosure practices.