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Bogey helps homeowner with finance fee refund

PINION HILLS • The mortgage crisis continues to impact property owners in both little and big ways. For Frederick A. Chavez, that involved coming up with a $200 fee that strained his finances.

Chavez hoped to refinance the mortgage on his property through the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP). He first applied through GMAC Mortgage Company, which owned the first and second deed on the property.

During the process, GMAC filed bankruptcy. Chavez was notified that Green Tree Servicing LLC took ownership of the loan.

The homeowner received a referral to a finance company that would help him maneuver through the loan process. According to Chavez, it was first necessary for Green Tree to file an instrument to subordinate the first deed.

Green Tree required a $200 document and filing fee to process the paperwork to subordinate the first deed. Chavez attempted to get the fee waived, but when his request was refused he scraped together the money and paid Green Tree in July 2012.

When Green Tree decided not to complete the subordination process so that the refinancing application could go through, Chavez asked them for a refund. Their refusal is what led him to write to Daily Press consumer advocate Michael “Bogey” Boguslawski for assistance.

In his Aug. 15, 2012 letter, Chavez explained the sequence of all the events that led him to ask for Bogey’s help and to file multiple Better Business Bureau complaints against Green Tree.

“They did not provide a service for the fee,” wrote Chavez. “Isn’t that stealing?”

Bogey wrote to Keith A. Anderson, president of Green Tree on September 15, 2012.

“In one of the most difficult economic times in our country’s history,” Bogey wrote, “your company is not handling this properly.”

On October 3, 2012 Karen Nedved, Green Tree’s Customer Service Correspondence Manager, wrote to Frederick and Judy Chavez in response to Bogey’s letter.

“Although the policy for subordination states the $200 fee is non-refundable,” wrote Nedved, “as a courtesy, Green Tree has made the decision to refund your $200 fee.”

“I know our case did not involve a large amount of money,” Chavez said. “But during that time, $200 was a lot of money since we had multiple fees with the refinancing. Green Tree kept putting me off. Not until Bogey got involved, did it change.”

To seek Bogey’s help, write a letter that clearly and concisely describes the problem, with your full name, mailing address, daytime phone number and email address, if available. Include the name, address and phone number for the opposing party. Include a statement granting Boguslawski full permission to investigate and handle the case under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA) and related laws.

Boguslawski’s services are free of charge, but only select letters will be chosen for investigation and follow-up. Absolutely no phone calls, please. Letters may be sent to “Bogey,” Daily Press Consumer Advocate, 2645 N.E. 32nd St., Fort Lauderdale, FL 33306.

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