The mortgage burning, part 1

At the end of August, the Wife and I get this letter from our mortgage company – which has the same logo as the bank, so I assume they’re related:

“Congratulations! Our records show that your mortgage will be paid in full in the next few months. We know that satisfaction of the mortgage on your home will be a special event and we would like to make this process as smooth as possible…

“Since it is unusual for the last payment on a loan to be the exact amount of the payment, it is important that you contact our Customer Service Department to have a Payoff statement mailed to you…

“Please note, if you are on our Automatic Mortgage Payment program,” – we were – “we will NOT be able to draft your last payment.”

My wife calls the toll-free 800 number, and she’s given instruction to mail and sign a request for the amount to some address. This is not making any sense to me, so I call the number, and get to a menu-driven message to give me two options: I can get a bill mailed to me, which will cost $25 (!) or I can get the amount on the phone, for free. I opt for the latter, and I hear that it’s $770.92. I call home, leave a message for my wife. When I get home, she tells me that’s WAY more than what we pay each month; frankly, I never paid it much attention.

I call the next day, hear the message again. I try to get to an operator, but I get a lot of “that’s not a valid entry” messages. Finally, I stumble onto a route by which I can speak to an actual human being. She informs me that the current balance is $716 and something at that moment , so by the time the cashier’s check or certified check they require gets there, it’ll be a bit over $717, not $770.

So the Wife send a cashier’s check for $717 and change. THEN we get in the mail the final statement; there’s some final fee of about $50, and the real amount IS $770 something. So I have to call AGAIN, and we have to get ANOTHER cashier’s check for the balance. NOW we’re FINALLY done with this.

We had had a good banking relationship heretofore with that institution, but the denouement has left me a tad cranky. That was NOT what I consider “smooth as possible.”

The home equity loan still needs to be satisfied. But that’s one down…

0 thoughts on “The mortgage burning, part 1”

  1. Roger, I once tried to pay off a credit card completely, with the agreement on the final amount to be frozen that day. I mailed the check. Chase Bank (barf) sent me a letter saying I owed $26.12. (Now this was in my pre-diagnosis days, when I could be pretty annoying. Even more than now.)

    I got on with Customer Service (oxymoron) and, after spending a half an hour taking down notes and getting nowhere, I asked for a supervisor. After another half an hour of wrangling, I finally said, “You do realize that I’m calling from out of town on your (800) number. Between the phone bill and all the manhours you have squandered trying to make your erroneous points, you have cost Chase well over the 26 bucks I do not owe you. If I write YOUR bosses, I’ll be sure to make note of that, and I have all your names written down.”


    “Ms. Barlow, we will go ahead and credit your account.”

    I closed all my accounts with chase and switched to GHS credit union!! Amy


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