Monday, February 13, 2012
But I digress…
I know this is a blog about our ‘Round-the-World cruise, but I just have to vent my spleen about the mortgage refi morass.
We refinanced our home mortgage in order to get a better rate. I freely acknowledge that we are lucky to be in a position, i.e., not underwater, to do this. But why, WHY does it have to be so painful?
First, the mortgage company wanted to see our ENTIRE banking account record. I understand that they have to know whether we will be able to repay the loan. But do they really have to see every check we wrote for the past 2 months? Every payment we made? What happened to privacy? Why does the mortgage company have to know which doctors I go to? Or whom I hired to clean up my house? Or to whom we donate money. Or any of a number of other transactions that should be nobody’s business but mine.
Then there is the Title Company. For anybody who has refinanced in the past few years, that probably is all I need to say. If ever there was a business in need of restructuring and clean-up, the Title Company is it. I think they think they have a license to print money.
I understand SOME of the fees: the appraisal fee, the credit report, flood certification. But others! Why are we charged a Doc Prep Fee of $110 when we are also charged a Processing Fee of $450 (processing what? Nobody could or would tell me), an underwriting fee of $650, a Lenders Policy Fee of $869, a Lender Charge of $995 (a Lender Charge? What are the other charges?), an Escrow Fee of $135, an Endorsement 8.1 PUD (?) of $100. Where is all this money going? Her response when we asked what the fees were for? We have to make money.
Almost all the pages are 8 ½ by 14. Who has the space to store 8 ½ x14 sheets of paper? There are 131 pages, not counting the 400—yes, 400—pages our bank sent. And not counting the 2 years of income tax returns that were sent. All this could be electronic, I can hear you lament. Yes, it could and was, but guess what? the mortgage company PRINTED OUT all 600 pages! What a waste. And what a security and privacy nightmare.
We each had to sign one or both of our names on 42 of those 131 pages! The escrow officer wanted to verify our signatures—does she have no idea of how signing your name 42 times in half that number of minutes can change what your signature looks like? My signature on her notary book looks nothing like what my signature on the first of those 42 pages looks like!