Yes, Trial Mods and Forbearances are Part of Wells Fargo’s Scam

Special Forbearance plans and Trial Modifications are just Wells Fargo’s stalling tactics, requiring loan mod. applicants to pay in money that generally isn’t applied to your mortgage to somehow pre-qualify to be re-reviewed for a loan modification. This is just a load of BS. If you are offered a “special forbearance,” that doesn’t get you any closer to a loan mod. Even if you make all the agreed-upon payments on time, you’ll still be asked to keep sending paperwork over and over. You’ll be reported to credit agencies as delinquent on your loan during the forbearance and/or trial mod. period – even though you are making the payment Wells Fargo specifies. Your loan will likely also still be progressing on the track toward foreclosure (the deadly dual-track system.)                          Read more

Granny vs. Wells Fargo – This series of videos documenting a conversation between two women seeking a loan mod and an employee of Wells Fargo’s Office of the President will sound familiar to anyone who has been playing the delay-and-deny game with any of the big banks. Can you count the lies the WF rep. tells?

30 thoughts on “Yes, Trial Mods and Forbearances are Part of Wells Fargo’s Scam

  1. OMG, I am so glad you posted this, we went through HELL with Wells Fargo, and got nowhere. It literally made me sick. How can they expect you to sign a form that isn’t even true? She’s just pulling answers out of her butt, she makes no sense. The women we worked with, Ty Pickens, lost our paperwork over and over and when they did get it they said it was too late. We fought for a while, but I have M.S. and I was so stressed out from all the BS, I ended up in the hospital. How are they getting away with this? We went through this for 2 years. If you need any help , were here for you.

    • So sorry for your troubles James. These banks just don’t care about any mitigating issues – they seem to intend to harass everyone into either the poorhouse, the hospital or worse. Even though you decided not to play the game, I hope you and your family members are telling your story to anyone who’ll listen, reporting the BS to your state attorney general and complaining to the impotent regulators. At some point there will be critical mass of people saying “This Is Not Right!” and something will shift. Best of luck to you and your family and thanks for the offer of help. I have a pretty good support system in place now, though that doesn’t mean there aren’t days when I’m alternately pulling out my hair and throwing things.

  2. Well we just got our modification and after a year of “we lost your paperwork” and we went through the 3 month trial they have given us our mod paperwork which get this is $26 less than what we were already paying how is this affordable we are only living on my husbands income and takes home about 2200 a month. Our payment will be 908 this is what we went through a year of waiting and letting people take pics of our house..what a crock…have not signed yet still doing research. According to the paper work our interest went down to 2% from 5.75% and that is all our payment went down..Are we the only ones?????

    • All that work and worry for a $26/month adjustment? Do you think the people who work at these banks even use their brains enough to think “gee, that’s not much help” or “I’d be pissed if I waited months for that pitiful outcome.”

      If you’re unsure your bank has the numbers right (and they often don’t in all kinds of very important instances) there are plenty of online amortization tables where you can plug in your principal, interest and term and get the payment amount. Good luck if you decide to fight for a better deal.

    • You have a HAMP modification your 2% is only year 1-5 and then will step increase until your max interest rate is reached. How far past due were you? The more past due you have to capitalize into the loan, the less your payment will be reduced. We’re your taxes and insurance previously escrowed? If not or they went up this will effect payment amount. Also, if your loan was fairly new, there would not have been a lot if years to extend term. Last piece your Loan to Value Ratio, your home could be worth way less than you think. There are a lot of factors. The government wants the payment to be no more than31% of your gross income or a minimum 10% reduction of your P&I, sometimes exceptions can be made, but that is standard.

  3. Just some FYI, Wells Fargo, Chase, BOA and other banks are the servicers of your government invested loans, such as Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac etc. The only options available are 4 modifications ( including HAMP), Unemployment Forbearance and Repayment Plan. The banks don’t make the rules, the government investors do. Approval and denial is up to them and there are eligibility requirements and guidelines. The borrower has 30 days from the date they are set up in system to get all required documents in, if a complete packet is not received the borrower is removed from review. The banks don’t make the rules or decisions, the government does. I have personally helped hundreds of borrowers get completed loan modications, ranging in a decrease from $10 to $$2000. Sometimes the payment is not as low as people like, but it gets rid of the past due balance and brings the borrower out of foreclosure. Bank employees and the banks truly want to help people, there are always going to be employees who don’t do their jobs, and customers who will complain no matter what. Bad stuff happens to everyone. I was on unemployment for 18 months, did I fall behind on my mortgage, heck no! I cut every luxury and ate as cheap as possible and let other bills go before I would allow that to happen. There is a large amount of borrowers who bought houses they couldn’t afford and live above their means and it has finally caught up. Quit blaming the banks people and take some responsibility for your own financial actions. I help people daily either save their homes or walk away with dignity and avoid foreclosure, I work hard for my customers and I am not out to scam or cheat people, and I just get tired of all the bank bashing!

    • Glad if you’re able to help some people keep their homes, ModSpecialist. But if you’re out there in the trenches of the mod mes, I find it hard to believe you think the banks want to help people. Some of the employees, yes. I think some of them honestly hate all the lies and misdirection they have to feed to borrowers; they just have to do it to keep their jobs.

      My own experience has clearly showed that Wells Fargo is in the business of stringing along borrowers. They took more than seven months to complete the first review of my loan for mod and made me send the same docs over and over – 11 submissions including one of more than 100 pages that turned out to have been requested AFTER the decision to deny me had been made (but they didn’t bother to notify me for another couple weeks!)

      And the “government investor” in my case didn’t have anything to do with that – their guidelines for both timelines and how/when the servicing bank communicated with me were clear and simple and Wells never bothered to follow any of them.

      I do agree some people got themselves in over their heads with loans so easy to get. I for one am not one of those – no “liar’s loan,” substantial down payment, conventional mortgage. But, like many people, I got stuck in circumstances I could not have foreseen – most prominent the economy crashing and decimating my small business. Neither I nor any other average homeowner caused that, but we’ve certainly all been forced to deal with the far-reaching consequences. Thanks a lot banks and Wall Street.

      Good for you that you were able to keep your house even after being unemployed. I think most people out there fighting for mods have cut back to bare bones spending and are still having difficulty making their mortgage payments. They may have been out of work even longer than you are despite desperately looking for a job; they may have health problems or be coping with critically ill family members. Surely, if you’re legit, you’ve encountered a lot of good, honest people just trying to do their best to keep it together.

      The banks aren’t the only bad guys in this whole mortgage mess right now, but they are bad guys, no way to deny that credibly. And they do flat out lie to people. Wells Fargo has been telling Congress for a couple years now that everyone in review for a mod gets a single point of contact to help them through the process. Well, I’m in process of trying to get in touch with my 17th primary contact person, who left me one message on June 1 and has neglected to return any of the dozen phone messages I’ve left her since then in a vain attempt to find out what she wanted when she called. That’s not a bank helping a borrower. That’s not even good basic business practice and that’s completely par for the course in my experience.

    • Be- I have been with Wells Fargo since 1975. 1/03 I had first of 6 spinal surgeries and only get soc sec disability. My wife lost her business taking care of me. I began loan modification(s) in Feb 2012 when they offered to reduce $216,000 off of a $500,000 2nd TD given to me without any income tax returns, filing any financial papers, my banker did, or doing anything but sign escrow docs (appraisal – unknown). I was drugged out and permanently diss led with no way to ever repay. I got the line of credit and bills were paid unti it became zero available & loan modification started. I was told to ignore “computer Foreclosue” papers. In March 2012, a foreclosure note was on my door. I won a court TRO April 24, and was to finish loan mod between then and 7/24 continuance. I was just asked for my third set of financials and 3 months of bank statements again. Must be submitted to WFB Atty working with my atty through court, by 7/2/12. I began a med detox program 6/18 & could not finish ll until 7/5/12. On 7/3, I heard CA had passed a law forbidding foreclosures if loan mods are being processed. In the MUST be submitted today, was an Escrow page that ALSO, said I agreed to waive all previous agreements, including TRO BUT NOT STATED THAT WAY! Did they want my waiver before law change, or was my old sets of financials Dated? Having been told 4 times in 2009-2011 by my Banker that my loans were too high and didn’t qualify for loan modifications -lies. Where is legal ethics of bank to me. I should have sold house and had $800,000 equity to rent a cheaper home and. Save my money. I was never given any good info and needed it as drugs left me with a Dizzy Brain unable to make decisions properly. So much for bankers. Now I’m still waiting to do modification or lose house!

      • Sorry to hear about all your troubles Clark. It’s awful how Wells Fargo and the rest of the banks are treating people. You’d think 30+ years as a customer would earn you some honesty and compassion. But no, you get what all the rest of us get when seeking to have our mortgage loans re-structured – years of lies and BS. My only consolation is that this is not a sustainable business model – you can only burn so many customers before you have no business left. Best wishes for you returning to health so you and your wife can fight the b$%#*ds and either save your home or find a way to get out and make a better life. Good luck!

    • The process may have improved on paper, but not in practice. The things the women discuss in the videos match my ongoing experience with Wells Fargo. That’s why I posted them.

  4. I need help. We just received the packet of information from Wells Fargo for our trial modification. I have until next Friday to make my decision. The payment is something we can afford but I am worried that this is a scam.

    • Be very careful “Helpme in Jersey.” Don’t agree to anything that you don’t have in writing signed by someone from Wells Fargo. And ask lots and lots of questions before you wade into the mortgage mod quagmire, especially if you are current on your mortgage and can afford the payments you have.

      Be aware that the banks play a nasty little game where they solicit you for a modification – the wouldn’t it be nice if we just came along and gave you a lower payment come-on – as a way to lure you into their bottomless foreclosure pit.

      They start with a perfectly rational-sounding trial modification and instruct you to pay an amount lower than your contracted mortgage payment for three months (or sometimes longer.) What they don’t tell people (or they lie about) is that during those three months they will report you to the credit agencies as delinquent because you aren’t paying the amount your mortgage contract calls for, even though they told you to pay that amount. Oh, and the trial period payments generally ARE NOT applied to your mortgage; they go into some secret account never to be seen again.

      Even if you make all the “trial mod” payments on time and jump through any other hoops, such as sending them reams of paperwork one or many times, chances are at the end of the trial period they’ll inform you that for some made-up and usually vague reason that you haven’t qualified for a permanent loan modification. At that time they’ll demand a balloon payment including the unpaid amount from the trial period (yes, even though you paid the amount they told you to pay) and any fees they might have made up to tack on. If you can’t come up with this balloon payment in a relatively short time, you get thrown into foreclosure because you are, at that point, technically three months delinquent on your mortgage.

      Now you have to fight off their relentless foreclosure machine, which seems to move forward only, no reverse. Once they have their sights on you, it’s very difficult to get them turned around. And, because your credit has taken a hit, you might not even be able to refinance somewhere else to escape.

      I urge you to speak to an experienced housing counselor or foreclosure attorney – someone actually in the trenches – before you make any changes to your mortgage.

  5. I want to add that I had not contacted them to see if they would
    modify our loan. They sent us this paperwork.

  6. Thank you admin. our situation is tricky because we had to claim bankruptcy after my husband lost his job. We are at the point of foreclosure and we know we do not owe any money to WF just the property. If we agree to this modification we will be pushed right back into debt with them. Our fear was getting screwed in this process. And it seems that’s what would happen if we make this deal. Thanks for the heads up.

    • You might join the forum at and post your info. there for some additional advice from those who have been there, done that. Good Luck!

  7. My story is the same as all the others. In November of 2009 Wells Fargo said I qualified for the modification. I was told not to make any payments until Jan. of 2010. Then I was to make three “trial “payments. After four months I was turned down, but I could apply again. Then they needed more paper work, again, again, and again. Now they told me I didn’t have to make payments while the modification was being processed because they would be moved to the end of the loan with a lower interest rate.. I am self employed and all this time business was improving and my income was getting better. Finally I had an attorney representing me and after seven months their “investors” denied the modification. Long story short; finally my house went to foreclosure and was sold on Nov. 2, of 2011. I was told it is now owned by Freddie Mac. However, the records at the Clerk of Courts Office say it was bought by Wells Fargo !!! I am now leasing the house. Freddie has it for sale and has a purchase agreement set to close in the middle of August. My attorney is filing paper work to stop the sale and try to get Wells Fargo to rescind the foreclosure and do the modification like they promised or just reinstate the loan. I can also do a buy back from Freddie, but it’s hard to get a mortgage loan with a foreclosure on my credit report and have enough for the down payment. It is a little more complex than this, but this is just a quick summery.

    • Same story, different day. Sure is getting old, isn’t it David? Reading over and over for years about the ways banks are abusing the systems that are supposed to help homeowners caught in a financial landslide not of their making. And all the while the powers that be are twiddling their thumbs, talking tough about “preserving home ownership” while actually aiding and abetting the perpetrators.
      Your story resembles mine in that I, too, am self-employed and I worked my backside off to get my business back on track all the while I was unsuccessfully trying to fight off Wells Fargo’s foreclosure machine. A year post foreclosure I’m nearly back to where I was when things derailed in early 2009. Gee, if only Wells Fargo would have worked with me instead of jerking me around, I’d be happily paying my mortgage today. Instead, the company has gained a vocal enemy for life. Sure seems like bad business to me.

  8. HI, We live in CA, south of the Bay Area and home prices are rising. Our house has risen about $100K. We applied for a mod in Feb 2013, our HUD counselor sent it in. Our Home Preservation Specialist sent us documentation that she received all doc for mortgage assistance. A few days later I call and they put us in a HAFA short sale template. This was NEVER requested!!! Home prices soared, 2 months later April 2013 they finally put us in a modification template and now our BPO shows equity so therefore the banks want to foreclose and get their $. Back in Feb. 2013 we were under water. I am trying to challenge them and make them use home values from Feb. 2013.
    Do you know of anyone having success in fighting WF’s mistakes like this? Almost 4 years dealing with this!!!!!!

    • I think you’ve figured this one out, Fouryears, and it’s likely Wells Fargo made no mistake in stringing you along for four years. It sure seems to me this is just another part of the banks’ delay-and-deny game. In markets where real estate values are bouncing back (for real or because the banks are artificially tightening the supply of REOs to drive up prices) they string you along until they think they can get more $$ for your home, then swoop in and foreclose. As servicer, WF made money for every contact and bogus letter they sent to you along the way. And they probably will end up “owning” your house after the foreclosure sale so it can be sold again. Neat deal, huh? If you’re John Stumpf, that is.

    • Hi, I live in the SF Bay Area and am currently in litigation with Wells Fargo. I am interested in hearing about our story. May I contact you?

  9. It’s true….I have been supporting my daughter and her now 2 yo, since 12/11,
    It’s getting harder and harder, I initiated contact with them…the whole process was done in a timely manner, and I entered into the 3mo trial, paying approximately $15 over the designated amount…they are now saying I missed a payment, I could never get hold of my HPS, was never informed of this missed payment, never notified of being denied for that reason, my statement clearly shows that I made all payments on time, now getting phone calls demanding the arrears, (under 500)…black marks on my otherwise fair credit, wish I’d seen this site before I called them. They have truly made a mess of everything!

  10. Hi, I live in Chicago and not behind on mortgage yet but don’t have money to pay this month mortgage with WF. I applied for disability in Feb 2013. Its been over 2 1/2 years so my courtdate approval will come this year. Most of the blogs are with people with some type of job… my mom helps me with $300 a month & my son is a border and pays rent of $300 a month. That’s not enough to pay mortgage of $850 …basically just utilities and cable. I have drained my 401ks and pensions to make it until now…I’m out of options. In reading all the blogs I am skeptical to call WF because I don’t want my home to go in foreclosure. I owe $96,000, my home is worth $127,000. What should I even ask? For a forebearance?

  11. Hello All,
    I am not really good at english but i really want to post some comment here since, i have Mortgage with Wells Fargo for 1st and have 5 years behind Mortgage with Wells Fargo.
    I was laid off from my 2nd job in 2009 and found out that i had a cancer in Jan of 2010 then had to visit hospital often for check up, surgery and Chemo-Therapy. During this time, i couldnt work full time at my primary job. Due to these reasons, i requested loan modification with Wells Fargo and they were keep asking same documents over and over and over. We were sending all the documents for review and finally received letter in September 22, 2009 for trial payment amount of $2,196 from $3,011. We were keep paying for that amount and couple month later they refund our check and send us the letter with notice of sale date. The property we currently own is our first house that we purchased and we really didnt want to lose it. We were keep sending them the documents and received letter stating that our requested has been denied since my monthly payment increased not decreased because 5 year behind and sending us same letter with sale dates. Everytime we receive the sale date notice, we were keep requesting loan modification for review.
    We finally received approved modification after i included my wifes income with 100% contribute letter and PITI monthly payment at $3,259.60 from $3,011 ( previous amount of mortgage payment). They gave us same rate as before 6.875% and also reduce the term to 254 from 360. no principal reduction or waiver 5 years late behind. They also told me about balloon payments for 5 years behind payment. they calculate the monthly based on my current princial amount of around $375,000. I received a phone call from wells fargo and the lady told me i also can do the re-finance after making the mortgage payments so, i asked lady, my house is underwater and we do not have equity at home. Can i do the re-finance with 100% LTV with Wells Fargo? and she goes i need to contact Re-finance department for re-finance. Is this the Best way Wells Fargo do for Loan modification? ;(

    • No Jung Huh, it is absolutely NOT the way to restructure someone’s loan. It is the best way for Wells Fargo to make a whole lot of money in “servicing” fees and charges to the “investor” that “owns” your mortgage. And despite English not being your first language, you have done a very good job of describing the same kind of situation that has happened to tens of thousands of people. I found it hard enough to deal with Wells Fargo’s nonsense in my native language; can’t imagine the frustration you have had. Wishing you the best of luck as you continue to fight for your home.

  12. My husband bought our first house in Sept 2011 using the VA loan with no money down. Our loan is 30 years with a 4.875% interest rate. We bought the house for $130K with monthly payments starting at $1,056.00/mo, now they’re at $1000.99/mo. In 2014 my husband was given disability by the VA and had to have shoulder surgery. Because of this he had to quit his FT job, and his disability is $1,750/mo, which let’s face it, is chump change when you’re trying to survive in this world unless you have literally 0 debt anywhere else. I work FT too, but I don’t make that much either. Needless to say, things are tough. We are just over $12k behind on the mortgage after 3 “forbearances” which were designed to HELP us. We just completed our fourth forbearance where our payment was reduced to $930.22/mo for four months, can you please explain to me how a $77 difference is supposed to help us get caught up?? I can’t even tell you how many times we’ve been assigned a new HPS. As far as I can tell, when I log into the account on the WF website, those $930.22 payments have been applied and the principle amount is reducing. It shows we paid, but then right above that shows the “Applied” for the full monthly payment. I’ll admit, it confuses me a little. Is WF paying the remaining $77? Our escrow is negative $2,839.11. My husband tries to spare me the real details of what’s going on and my name isn’t on the mortgage. I couldn’t tell you if/how often he’s being asked to submit paperwork, I can only say that I’ve seen one hardship letter he submitted where he began the letter with “As I stated in my last letter”, so I’m assuming he’s getting the same run around. We are currently behind $12,329.36 to be 100% caught up and it’s my understanding that IF we qualify for a loan modification, they’ll just extend our loan beyond 30 years and slap that amount to the end, yes? We don’t qualify for HARP/HAMP because your loan must have existed on or before January of 09, at least that’s what I’ve read. Our debt to income ratio is through the roof, so can someone give me an honest opinion, should I be worried about losing my home? Every statement has ” Your loan has been referred to foreclosure” in bright red at the very top, but at the very bottom it informs us that WF has not sent the first notice of filing because we are currently participating in a mortgage assistance program, so surely they’re working with us? Anyone experiencing this and then had their home yanked from under them? Advice would be greatly appreciated!

  13. Pingback: Wells Fargo Mortgage Waive Escrow | First Home Mortgage

  14. I was out of work for 4 months and had exhausted my savings. I was working again and called Wells Fargo to tell them the payment would be late and I know there will be late fee and asked if they could set it up in the system to come out of my account automatically so I didn’t get the collection calls. The Rep on the phone asked why it would be late. I explained. She offered a “reduced” payment plan. I got all of the detail even reiterated everything because it sounded to good to be true. I asked “what’s the catch” no catch she said, just helping a good customer. AT NO POINT did she tell me there would be a balloon payment at the end of the six month period. I mean, If I am already paying late how do they think I can come up with 1/2 the payment times six. The minute I figured it out I contacted them. I had to jump through all kinds of hoops. Their solution, take out another one for six months ????? At this point they offer a loan modification, I did everything they asked, they denied me. I ended up having to retain an attorney to get the loan modification done. When it was all said and done I had to sign three different times three months in a row because they said the paperwork was incorrect. I asked the attorney that helped me if there was any action that could be taken against Wells Fargo because I am certain many people have been mislead. I was told no because even though I had documented name, dates, times, and conversations, I never sent them anything in writing.

    NOW ….. 3 years later I want to sell my house. I verify with the attorneys office that helped me, I also got a payoff from Wells Fargo. I was VERY specific in in explaining I had done a loan mod in the past and verified there was no problem. I listed my house, and it sold. THE DAY OF closing (literally 1 hour before) I get a call from the title company asking about a HUD payoff. I explained to them the past loan mod. I then called WF AGAIN and verified payoff. The title company called back and said there was a misunderstanding all in in the payoff, all is good so we closed. Almost 7 months later, I get a call from the title company stating there was an error and HUD wants $20,000, if not paid will go on my credit report. I SERIOUSLY cannot believe this is happening. I am so stressed out right now. It’s not like I was hoping they wouldn’t find it. I was very specific in bringing it up to be sure this didn’t happen.

    Has anyone else had this happen?? Any shared stories would be greatly appreciated.

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