Iowa is part of a multimillion dollar state and federal settlement with Virginia-based mortgage company SunTrust over alleged abuses in handling loans. Geoff Greenwood is the spokesman for Iowa’s Attorney General. “The agreement addresses SunTrust’s past mortgage servicing abuses, it provides relief to past and current borrowers, and it puts in place new rules in place to ensure that this doesn’t happen again,” Greenwood says.
Greenwood says one portion of the of the agreement deals with borrowers who still have loans.”Suntrust has a menu of options, those include things like reducing principal and lowering interest rates. Those are two of many options,” Greenwood says. “And SunTrust also has to make payments to borrowers it foreclosed on from January of 2008 to December 31st of last year. These are borrowers who likely experienced some kind of servicing abuse.”
The state has identified 180 borrowers in the foreclosure category who could be getting part of the payment. “We don’t know exactly how much the payments will be because there is a national 40 million dollar fund, and it depends on how many of those borrowers apply for the fund. Once the deadline passes, then all that money will go to the borrowers,” Greenwood explains.
He says they do not know the exact number of borrowers who have a current loan with SunTrust. And he says SunTrust will choose which of the current loans it will offer to modify. Greenwood says if you have a current loan with SunTrust, you can contact them about the settlement. “They can call 1-800-634-7928, or go to the company’s website at SunTrust-Mortgage-dot-com. For the borrowers who experienced foreclosure, the company or a settlement administrator will contact them,” Greenwood says. Greenwood says this settlement mirrors the 2012 national mortgage settlement that included the five largest mortgage servicers in the country.
The Attorney General also announced a settlement today with a Minneapolis company that sold membership programs. The A-G’s office says Sempris LLC will refund $450,000 for membership programs that include: Budget Savers, Credit Radar, Essentials for Home, Smart Perks, Rewards, Vacation Passport, Value Access, and Value Plus. A news released from the Attorney General says the company charged Iowans for memberships in which they have never intentionally enrolled. The Consumer Protection Division will use the company’s membership records to issue refunds to Iowans.