You’ve gone through the long and tedious process of finding your perfect home… You’ve made an offer, it’s been accepted, and now it’s time to apply for a mortgage. Who do you contact?
There are many banking options when it comes to mortgages and when it comes to choosing the right banking partner to help you get into your dream home. There are many things to consider. First of all, the interest rate, the duration of the loan, closing costs, etc.
However, one thing I’ve learned after buying some real estate is that the bank you choose should be a real consideration. Although banks are aggressively trying to get your business, once you have decided which bank to go to, the tide begins to turn and it suddenly becomes very difficult to deal with this once friendly and understanding bank.
That is, if you pick the wrong institution…
Once the process has started, switching to a new bank can be a costly decision and shady banks know this. B. your broker and your title company, tedious. In addition, a change after a few weeks can mean that you have to pay significantly higher interest rates if interest rates rise.
You do not want that! Therefore, it is crucial to choose the right company from the start so that you can move into your dream home as smoothly as possible.
I learned this the hard way when I decided to get an AmeriSave mortgage. Having gone through this process with other mortgage lenders, including in late 2008 after the financial crisis, I had a reasonable understanding of how the mortgage process worked.
But just a few weeks into my AmeriSave mortgage experience, I had an unfortunate wake-up call. From my point of view, the bank only put me under pressure because of the sport. It seemed like they almost enjoyed making my life a living nightmare. I am struggling to get documents that were difficult to obtain. The fact that they were asking me for some of these documents was absurd…
What kind of documents you might ask?
The first was the number of documents. It was 10 at first, then 20, when I finally thought I was done I had 10 left, then another 10. All in all, by the time I finally completed the process, I must have submitted somewhere between 50 and 60 paperwork.
Some of the strangest were:
The current year’s K-1 tax slips from stocks I didn’t even own anymore. I didn’t have these and unlike other documents, finding them proved extremely difficult. In the end I found out that these documents didn’t even exist. Then I had to provide evidence when it didn’t exist.
I needed to track one of my rental property’s HOA invoices. This shouldn’t have been a big deal since I originally provided the document to AmeriSave, but as it turns out the HOA invoice I provided was from the previous quarter and that wasn’t good enough. I had to get the HOA bill from the current quarter even though it was the same dollar amount.
Since my wife had sent me a gift to help buy the property, AmeriSave wanted my partner’s bank statement. No big deal, I asked for it and got it. Unfortunately they also required her to provide her other bank accounts which were NOT part of the gift. Why would someone who doesn’t have credit have to provide bank accounts unrelated to the credit? My partner hesitated, and with good reason. What business is it of AmeriSave to require access to someone’s private bank accounts that are unrelated to the loan and not on loan? Glad they didn’t ask for my mother’s bank accounts!
AmeriSave also told me to contact my accountant and have him write a letter stating that my business is currently active. This didn’t seem to make much sense for several reasons. For one thing, I’ve been in the business for almost 20 years and just filed a new tax return. Did you think I would go out of business? Second, my accountant only does my annual returns, so he has no first-hand knowledge of my business other than what’s on my tax return, which AmeriSave already had. After all, they had already assumed my business was active by providing real-time statements with company receipts. So they can see with their eyeballs firsthand that money has poured into the company. So why did they want me to contact the third party who had less information than them and asked that they create a document for me? It’s one thing to get me to hunt down documents. Still, it’s even more complicated when I have to go to a third party and ask them to create a document, especially when that third party doesn’t have first-hand knowledge of the information that AmeriSave wants to provide to them. Why should that even matter when you see how much money the company generates. It would be like asking for a copy of a document when you already have the original.
It took some time, but after completing all the requirements, I finally received a certified credit approval that was valid for eight weeks! That shouldn’t have been a problem because the loan ended in four weeks. I worked hard to get everything they needed including asking other parties to give me personal information or create letters for me to get the notarized authorization before we would lose our earned money.
I was hired… or was I?
A week before closing, AmeriSave hits me with another huge list of requirements! What? Oh no! Wasn’t I already certified? The official document I received that I was certified is not genuine? Do I have to start this painful process again? Why did you wait almost three weeks to tell me I had to do it all over again?
The first time I went through this process it was stressful enough, but now I gave my landlord 30 days notice and sold half of my stuff in preparation for the move. I did this because I was confident that I was certified.
Now we have another huge list of new absurd requirements, even though we are already certified.
AmeriSave wanted a disclosure and waiver document from my agent. When I asked him about it, his response was, “Lol. I can honestly say that no lender has ever asked me about it!”
AmeriSave wanted me to provide a lease for my rental property because it wasn’t on my tax return… Trouble was, it was on my tax return. Stop wasting my time!
They wanted a copy of the money check. The problem was that we paid by bank transfer and they already have the transfer documents. are you idiots
They want another letter from my accountant that my business is up and running. So now I have to go back to my accountant and ask him to write the same letter he wrote three weeks ago?
It’s like AmeriSave makes me do things just to make me do things. I desperately called and emailed my lender to find out what was going on and asked them to please call me as soon as possible. I haven’t received a call back. Instead, I received a short, dismissive email saying I was pre-approved but now need an update on a few things.
However, this is not the case! I had an official notarized credit approval that was valid for a specified amount and for eight weeks. I sent another email asking them to contact me asap and as there is only a week left until closure I think it was justified but I heard nothing back.
I ended up missing my graduation date because they wouldn’t approve my loan. Again, they wanted more documents. I missed the second deadline because they still approved me late.
Worst of all, if they don’t approve the loan on time, they delay the process. If the process is delayed, many of the documents submitted are now out of date. So now they are asking for new documents again.
Wait… So now I have to get new papers because you didn’t finish your work on time?
In the end, I must have filed 120-140 different documents and missed two closing dates to finally close straight on the third date after complaining to AmeriSave management about my loan officer not having a sense of urgency.
I was fortunate to barely get through one of the most stressful situations of my life when salespeople threatened to pull out or I missed my third deadline.
It worked out fine in the end, but I can tell you that I would never work with AmeriSave again. My warning to all homebuyers, unless you want to deal with a lot of added stress and a bank that could care less about their client’s closing date, stay far, far away from AmeriSave.