I have reached an age where I just do not care if I am politically correct or proper. What is, is and we should call it such.
I believe in the Golden Rule. Treat others as I would like to be treated, grant others the latitude I would like to have extended to me, allow others to live their lives as they so choose provided they do not infringe upon my right to the same. But every once in a while I run into a group, a company who makes it their directive in life to shortchange others, to lie, cheat, steal something (most often money) from those who have worked hard to earn what is sought.
I choose at this time to call a spade a spade, to call out two companies who are apparently making it their intent to do this to us, and if they are doing it to us they are doing it to an untold amount of people.
Stealing, lying, taking from us what is rightfully ours and telling us we are making a mistake by thinking otherwise.
To wit, Home Point Financial and Suddenlink Internet company.
Remember, these are our firsthand accounts, they happened to us. No second hand information, no rumors, no hearing it at the water cooler, no gossip. We are going through these situations as we speak. Everything I say here is what we are experiencing firsthand. I am telling the truth from our perspective only.
Our Experience with Home Point Financial
In August of last year, we purchased a house in Nevada, Missouri. It is a small house, perhaps 1,200 sq. ft. and was perfect for what we desired for it to be. Namely, a place we could live and bring my wife's father to live with us so as to care for him in his declining time here on earth as he suffered from Alzheimer's and Vascular Dementia. His passing in October of 2019 was a crushing blow to my wife and our family, watching as he faded away in our home.
Then, in December, came another blow. Our taxes were not being paid on the house. When we purchased the house we set it up to have escrow, meaning we paid a little extra each month in order to not worry about the taxes and insurance being paid; the finance company would take the money we paid extra, keep it in an account and at the end of the year, pay the taxes and the insurance. Except, it didn't work like that.
The finance company, Home Point, was called and we were told that the taxes were paid, on time. But they weren't; we spoke with the county and learned that our taxes were still outstanding. We explained to them what was going on, and after a three way call between my wife, the county and Home Point, we thought everything was straightened out, with the payment on its way electronically.
Two weeks go by, and nothing. So, another call was made.
Early January 2020
My wife called the county and learned they hadn't received the payment as of yet. So, she called Home Point again. This time she was bald faced lied to as the person on the other end of the line told her the payment WAS made, and everything was okay. She relayed that the county had yet to receive the payment, and asked for this person's supervisor.
She was been bounced around numerous times over the next few weeks, conversation after conversation, people telling her the payment was made, was about to be made, would be made. And not once was this true. Lie after lie came across the phone to her, nothing approaching the truth was heard.
Finally, in early February, the country confirmed the payment was made, complete with the penalty which was due because the payment was not made on time. At the time, we thought the ordeal was over. A statement on the Home Point website declared that if such a thing were to occur and it was Home Point's fault, they would pay the penalty for their mistake.
Then we received a letter in March which added to the situation in a negative manner. The letter stated that our escrow was below where it should be and that we needed to pay extra over the coming months to bring it up to where it should be. We wondered why we would be below as this was a new loan, only a few months old; did something change which required our insurance or taxes to go up?
Well, after a little digging we learned that the amount needed to increase was suspiciously near the amount of the penalty incurred due to the late payment of the taxes. Hmmm.
Where We Stand Today With Home Point
After calling Home Point we learned that they were now saying that the delay in paying was OUR fault! They could not pay the taxes on time because the property had been a part of the owner's rental property which consisted of the house next door and ours, and the properties had not been properly separated when we bought the house! So now, the county, the title company and us are all at fault!
Today we spoke at length with the title company, county and our realtor through whom we purchased the house. All are shocked, all are angry at being blamed for something being late when in fact everything was taken care of properly before the sale in August! Before we signed the papers and bought the house!
So tomorrow the realtor, county and title company are making calls together to Home Point to get this straightened out once and for all. Hopefully, they will be able to right the ship and halt the lies coming out of Home Point Financial towards us.
To me, the kicker is that the amount of the penalty paid by Home point is so small, comparatively speaking. It amounts to about $80.00. You read that right, a mere $80 bucks. An easy amount for us to just pay, except it isn't right. It is the principle of the amount, and the fact that they are trying to force us to pay something which is wrong, is basically extortion, fraud whatever you want to call it. We do not owe it, and I know that there are probably thousands of other people out there who do not do their due diligence and research as to why they are paying something, they just pay it and go on. If this is so, then Home Point Financial makes an untold amount of pure profit on those poor souls, all by simply lying to them.
It is time to stop this from happening. And if you are wondering why we ended up with them in the first place, it is because our loan was sold to them shortly after we got the loan. My wife researched them after we learned this and found review after review calling them out for their misdeeds, their falsehoods and bad dealings. But still, they purchase loans from other banks and financial institutions and here we are.
Comments Taken Directly From Yelp About Home Point
February 2020 "I have never run into a company so corrupt and deceitful. Sadly they purchased our mortgage so we are stuck with them. We are considering refinancing just to get another company."
March 2020 "The practices and procedures of this company should land their CEO and CFO in jail. They became my mortgage company and in 2 months figured out a way to raise my payments by 20%. An increase of nearly $500 when I have a fixed rate loan."
March 2020 "I refinanced last summer with Home Point Financial because they saved me over $250 a month on my mortgage. Fast forward six months later, and they raised my mortgage by over $400 a month because they claimed they miscalculated my escrow."
"Worst mortgage company I have ever dealt with."
"Home Point Financial is the WORST mortgage company I have ever dealt with. I've never experienced customer service this bad."
"This company is awful."
"Well 50 reviews and an average of 1 star.... I mean I don't know how else you can read that."
The Second Company that Took Advantage of Us: Suddenlink Internet
This one is a bit more complicated, yet also a bit more simple. A straight up lie and we don't care what you think. When we moved back to the Branson area, the condo we are renting is in an area where there is but one real option for internet: Suddenlink. We didn't think too much about this as we had them before at our other place and had no problems, no issues at all. Different place, far different story.
Because our son likes to game online with friends, we need a fast internet with preferably unlimited usage, and we expected to pay for that requirement. But after asking the landlord about internet speeds here we were told it was great, that no one had any problems gaming, streaming movies, nothing. So we (fools that we are) believed them and called Suddenlink. My wife spoke with a delightful lady who informed her that because fiber optic lines had not made it out to where our condo was yet, the speed wouldn't be quite as fast as other places and as a compensation, a lower price would include unlimited usage. It would still be good enough for him to game on, and for us to watch something on television. So far, so good.
The Clock Strikes Midnight and Suddenlink Turns Into a Pumpkin
After only about three weeks, we noticed our internet was running slower, and dropping more frequently. We would reset it, get it back online and after a short time it would drop again. So, we made a trip to the local Suddenlink office (only after an hour on the phone trying to get someone to talk to about it failed to net us anyone with any knowledge whatsoever). There we spoke with a somewhat surly woman who proceeded to tell us our service was not unlimited, that we only had a set amount per month and that we would be charged a hefty amount for each additional 50G of usage. She then wrote down a series of levels of usage and the appropriate fees for each level. We were shocked and angry at the lie we were told initially. It was a classic bait and switch tactic, one designed to get you hooked up and then charge you grossly high fees for not knowing you were going over their hidden limit.
Well, I can be devious too. I went back outside and called the new service number on my phone, pretended to be a new customer and gave them an address and asked about service there. A delightful lady (same one as before!) told me that we would have unlimited amounts of gigabites because the speed was slower than other locales, and the price would be what we were told before. I smiled, let her know I had someone she needed to talk to and handed the phone to my wife.
Well, it was an interesting conversation. My wife let her know that we knew about the lie, but then learned that SHE (the person we were talking with) earnestly believed she was telling us the truth; their training was teaching them this was the truth!
After another hour on the phone, and being stepladdered up and up until we were actually given the phone number to the corporate office, we found out that what we were told was not true, that what we learned the hard way was true, and that no one there gives a damn about the lie. We were promised phone calls to rectify the situation: not one came. We were told we would be given special pricing that would make the overages go away: never happened. To date, we have purchased extra gigabites in order to not be charged an exorbitant amount when the bill comes due but have since learned that it appears that our usage is increasing faster for having purchased extra! My wife and I are using our phones as hotspots for our computers and giving the internet to our son for his gaming, and it appears that his usage this month is higher than all of our usages last month! How convenient!
I understand that he is out of school due to COVID-19, and some usage increase is expected, but with us not using the home internet at all and it still goes up? Something doesn't smell right.
Ultimately, we are stuck with them though. There is no other internet provider in this area. My wife is teaching herself some tricks on how to best utilize what we have, to personalize our internet in a manner which makes it run more efficiently. She comes to me and explains things which I as a former cable and harness engineer, R & D Smart Bomb Quality Control Engineer, and Military Battery Designer and tester cannot understand! Yet, she is making a difference in our usage by learning these things. Tricks such as, did you know there are multiple channels in a router? That you can change these channels to get off the one the router is set on, a channel which most people use in an area? That you can almost have a dedicated channel all to yourself? Or that you can change the speed of your router, ramp it up and double what it puts out? Yep, she did it today! All by herself!
What am I Hoping for With This Article?
That the 20 or 30 people who actually read this will do their best to inform themselves of the possibility that their home loan can be sold, and that they take steps to avoid having it sold to Home Point. To ask the question before choosing a mortgage company or lender who they sell loans to and if they do sell to Home Point, to find another lender.
Also for people to learn about the internet providers where they live, where they are moving to before moving. If streaming or gaming is important to you, do your homework before you move! If you are moving to a rural area understand ahead of time that your options will be limited, and to learn all you can about who the providers are within the area you intend to move to. Make informed decisions which will lead to less headaches and anger at having to go through what we are going through.
If I can prevent one person from experiencing this, I will consider this a successful article.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Mr Archer
Prateek Jain from Madhya Pradesh, India on April 02, 2020:
Very informative article, nowadays the companies are completely focusing on making money irrespective of giving value. You did a courageous job by sharing your opinion. this will help others to understand how to deal in such situation.
Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on April 02, 2020:
Mike, this article is sure to help those who Google customer reviews before deciding on a purchase or from whom to purchase.
I'm so sorry you had to go through all this. Frankly, I've never heard of either company. Are they exclusive to your area?
I have a fixed rate mortgage. Each March it's reassessed, meaning the bank (Chase) looks at escrow to determine whether or not there's a shortage. My monthly payments also include homeowner's insurance and property taxes. I get my insurance statement from USAA every June and the property tax info comes out in October. It lists what payments will be if paid in November, December, or January. Fortunately, Chase pays both on or before the earliest due dates. My point is, I can check the math when I get my escrow statement each year. So far, all has been spot on.
I wish you luck moving forward.
Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on April 02, 2020:
There is a documentary on Netflix called Dirty Money, and it spotlights several such companies. I wish there these people did not exist, but greed and a lack of morals will not go away in our society. Still, we writers can expose them, which has to help.