I Am Prejudiced And Here's Why....

By
Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Compass, formerly RE/MAX WHP 0524642

I hate to say that I am biased about any aspect of our business, but I am. I despise Bank Of America. In my opinion, they are the walking, talking shinning example of corporate greed and disgust. So why am I talking about the Bank of North America today?

When I receive an offer I always heavily screen the preapproval letter. It's my duty & responsibility to my seller, and I won't apologize to anyone for being tough about it.

 

You have to call the lender to:

 

1. Ensure you have an open line of communication. A working phone number, extension, email address and even a physical address. ->FULL mail boxes, P.O. BOX's for an address, & kids answering the lenders home phone don't signal SUCCESSFUL TRANSACTION COMING.

2. I always ask: "Has credit been pulled, have you looked at DTI? {Debt to income ratios}?" For those of you reading this that are not in Real Estate know that it's not terribly uncommon to receive a BOGUS pre approval letter!

3. I want to make sure the lender is competent, aware of the buyer's expectations and interest rate. An incompetent loan officer says things like: "I'm pretty sure everything will be fine, let me let you talk to my shift manager when she gets back from lunch."

4. If it is a VA loan or self employed borrower I probe even deeper. Many lenders will take on a challenge (just like anyone else) with hopes of winging it. I don't want ANYONE winging my seller. This is why they hire me, to shield them from these type of scenarios.

5. If Realtor and buyer have NO PREVIOUS relationship with the loan officer then I proceed with even more caution.

The problem with BANK OF AMERICA is that when you call the number on the preapproval letter it's to customer service. I have NEVER been able to actually get a hold of any one person who is working the loan. I always get passed from one extension to another! They NEVER want to verify, talk or even acknowledge that the buyer on the preapproval letter is their customer. {my experience}

In one transaction I worked & closed, neither the borrower OR the Realtor representing the buyer had a ANY idea who the actual loan officer was at Bank Of America. Originally, the buyer wanted to go FHA. 1 day prior to closing he finds out he's got a CONVENTIONAL ADJUSTABLE RATE MORTGAGE! The loan DID NOT close on time, his lock expired and my seller was FURIOUS. To make up for their error, poor customer service and pathetic excuse for efficiency BOA paid ALL of the buyer's closing costs and made an apology to the buyer. I learned the hard way that as a listing agent you HAVE to get working phone numbers and email addresses.

If a financial institution is TOO big to treat you like their favorite client then perhaps you're working with the wrong people. I always suggest to a buyer to consider working with the lender that the Realtor has a previous relationship with. My loan officer always answers his phone and never plays games with me, my clients, the title company or anyone else. Our relationship is strong and expectation isn't vague.

Lastly, you can get an approval letter on Bank Of America's website without ever TALKING TO A SOUL! THIS is in my opinion ABSURD!

Moral of the story? Be smart about who you work with. Never assume that because you have a checking account with some large financial institution that you are going to "be treated special." Just remember that the CEO of BOA allegedly bought himself a nice $35,000 TOILET after receiving federal bail out money - OUR TAX DOLLARS!

 

Posted by

 

 
Greg Nino
, Houston area Realtor®.
Helping residential buyers, sellers and tenants 7 days a week.
Available @ 832-298-8555 

RE/MAX Compass (Formerly RE/MAX WHP)

www.GiveMeMyHomesValue.com

www.EverydayHoustonHomes.Com

 

 

The information contained in this blog is believed to be reliable and while every effort is made to assure that the information is as accurate as possible, the author of this blog, and its comments disclaim any implied warranty or representation about it's accuracy, completeness or appropriateness for any particular purpose. All information is copywritten and the property of Greg Nino.  

 

 

 

 

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Rainer
413,853
Terry Miller
Miller Homes Group - Tyler, TX
Miller Homes Group and Tyler Apartment Locator

They were bad enough and then bought Countrywide. Some REO managers will not accept a letter from BOA.

Sep 23, 2009 04:18 AM #6
Rainmaker
80,566
April Solomon
Solomon & Associates Realtors, Inc. - Port Richey, FL
Realtor/GRI

Bank of America "Sucks".  I am in for joining your hate club.  They are the greediest bank out there.  I'm with Ralph.  The BAHA club looks good.  After closing a short sale with them after 1 year of negotiations they purchased insurance for the home that was involved in the short sale and proceeded to bill my seller for this after the house had closed.  The left hand does not know or care what the Right hand is doing at this bank.

Sep 23, 2009 04:19 AM #7
Ambassador
282,250
Scott Leaf Personal Real Estate Corporation
Keller Williams Elite Realty, Port Coquitlam, BC - Port Coquitlam, BC
Scott Leaf & Associates Real Estate Team

I can not believe how different the process is between the US & Canada.  A pre-approval is almost golden here, unless their is a massive change in the Buyer's status like death or they rack up their credit at the last moment, a vast majoirty of pre-approves are funded within the Subject Removal period here by the same lendor who gave the pre-approval as long as mortgaged property is independently appraised near accepted selling price or higher.

 

 

Sep 23, 2009 04:35 AM #8
Rainmaker
1,461,785
Donna Harris
Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com - Austin, TX
Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator

I love those pre-approvals from B of A from their website that thank the person for visiting their site and encourages them to fill out a full loan application... but a buyers' agent is attaching that "thank you" as a pre-approval.

Sep 23, 2009 04:56 AM #9
Rainmaker
601,327
Donne Knudsen
Los Angeles & Ventura Counties in CA - Simi Valley, CA
CalState Realty Services

Greg - BRAVO!  YOU'D THE MAN!  You are singing to the choir, my friend.  I have so many stories from my Realtor friends and clients of the horrible stories about BofA" and their "pre-approval" letters. 

Just recently, I got a referral from one of my Realtor friends for one of her clients.  Fortunately for her, I have trained her well on what to look for and ask for when getting pre-approval letters from clients.

When her client handed her a BofA "pre-approval" letter, she did the same thing as you and after going through the same thing you did, she told her client that he needed to get another pre-approval letter from a reputable lender before she would work with him.  LOL

Sep 23, 2009 05:17 AM #10
Rainmaker
382,827
Kathleen Cooper
Kathleen Cooper, Sposato Realty Group - Worcester, MA
Sposato Realty Group - Broker Owner

Greg, I agree with you and despise Bank of America as well.  They ARE corporate greed!  I hope they fall under someday, I'd have a big smile on my face to see them pay the way they make others.

Sincerely,

Kathleen

Sep 23, 2009 06:45 AM #11
Rainmaker
1,557,915
Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED
RETIRED / State License is Inactive - Portland, OR

After reading your blog about BofA, I've got to call them on my account.  WHO CHANGED MY MAILING ADDRESS??  Not me!!  I having a mailing address, and my home address.  I use my mailing address for all financial documents, business etc.  So who changed my address??  NOT I . . . BofA!  They are just annoying.  And your blog makes a good point for some buyers going to a mortgage broker, someone they can meet in person!! 

Sep 23, 2009 10:44 AM #12
Rainmaker
1,085,952
Greg Nino
RE/MAX Compass, formerly RE/MAX WHP - Houston, TX
Houston, Texas

I love the comments! Proof that I'm not the only professional on Active Rain who shares the opinion!

Sep 23, 2009 11:23 AM #13
Rainmaker
400,528
John Cannata
214-728-0449 http://TexasLoanGuy.com - Frisco, TX
Texas Home Mortgage - Purchase or Refinance

Greg - I could certainly see the concerns, since that was your experience. On the lenders side, I actually work with BAC a lot. Rates are solid and I can typically get a hold of who I need. Then again, Im working with the wholesale side and thats a different animal. I am there customer, so they are pretty good about answering calls, follow-ups, etc. Unfortunately for a Realtor, they feel no obligation to you at all. They don't extend the personal touch.

Sep 23, 2009 01:08 PM #14
Rainer
15,608
Teresa Cwik
Showcase Staging Houston - Houston, TX

You're a sharp guy! I'd refer you  :)  I actually have a friend who used to be a loan office with BofA in Florida. She just moved to Wells Fargo. I personally do not like BofA either...I find that most credit unions have some of the best loan rates... I always tell folks TO SHOP SHOP SHOP for a good company and rate.

Sep 23, 2009 01:47 PM #15
Rainer
336,110
Chip Jefferson
Gibbs Realty and Auction Company - Columbia, SC

Personal lending is a must in todays inviroment. I refer real live taliking lenders. One is a Bank Of America LO. He gets the job done!

Sep 23, 2009 11:08 PM #16
Ambassador
3,671,709
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Greg, my last post - guess who the lender was that got my sellers to pass on an offer? 

Sep 24, 2009 03:27 AM #17
Rainmaker
238,410
Angelia Garcia
Pure Realtors - Dallas, TX

great info to hear about.  I will keep that in mind if I ever see a BOA preapproval letter.

Sep 24, 2009 07:15 AM #18
Rainmaker
1,085,952
Greg Nino
RE/MAX Compass, formerly RE/MAX WHP - Houston, TX
Houston, Texas

Angelia - GOOD!

Patricia - Go figure!

Laura - Nice to hear that the all don't suck.

Teresa - That's great advice you're offering, especially about the CU's!

John - Interesting to hear, thanks for sharing your opinion bud.

Sep 24, 2009 04:21 PM #19
Ambassador
1,090,147
Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman
Liberty Homes - Mililani, HI
(RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE

BOA....

In any event....following up with the lender...getting that proof of funds....gotta stay on top because there are less than ethical professionals on all ends out there. I'm watching another agent's transaction ...not a short sale....a regular transaction....at 90+ days now. Loan Officer, Realtor and all in the family. YUK

Sep 24, 2009 05:15 PM #20
Rainmaker
291,594
Robin Rogers
Robin Rogers, Silverbridge Realty, San Antonio, Texas - San Antonio, TX
CRS, TRC, MRP - Real Estate Investment Adviser

Greg, I've had many clients with accounts at Bank of America who got "pre-approved" with them before we went house-hunting. Worthless. At least half the time, I was able to get them to switch over to my local loan officer, where they actually worked with a human who takes responsibility for their transaction. B of A is like a black hole of customer service.

Cheers,

Robin

Sep 27, 2009 02:22 AM #21
Rainer
76,439
Sabrina Kelley
ERA Herman Group Real Estate - Woodland Park, CO
Woodland Park Colorado Mountain Homes and Land

I don't like to sling names but Bank of America is worth wasting my breath on so that I can rant about the excesses the company seems to go to, to be difficult.

The Bank of A should not be America but a common expletive beginning with the letter A.

Sep 27, 2009 08:38 AM #22
Rainer
42,659
Mandi Perkins
Pioneer Title Agency - Pinetop Lakeside, AZ

I've been telling ALL of my clients not to use Bank of America....the last one who didn't listen to me ended up spending an extra $3,000 due to B of A. I'm fully convinced they are evil.

Sep 28, 2009 08:47 AM #23
Rainmaker
1,494,966
Lyn Sims
RE/MAX Suburban - Schaumburg, IL
Schaumburg IL Real Estate

Thanks for your insights and thanks for naming who the lender is so that we all know who we should avoid.

Sep 28, 2009 01:26 PM #24
Rainmaker
411,264
Andrew Monaghan
The Monaghan Group - Glendale, AZ
CRS, GRI, EPro Associate Broker

Any encounter with a BofA call center is a disaster but they have some fantastic local loan officers that are professional, care and get teh job done, don't paint all bad when only one part is.

Andrew Monaghan, CRS, GRI, CDPE.
Team Leader, 
The Monaghan Group
Keller Williams Professional Partners.
WWW.TheMonaghanGroup.com
Andrew@TheMonaghanGroup.com
Andrew
602-308-4660 Ext 203 (O) 480-302-5816 (F)

Nov 15, 2009 03:46 AM #25
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