A recent article by the Huffington Post’s Peter S. Goodman showed how one homeowner from the Bronx has continued to struggle to save her home because of the outrageous treatment she’s received at the hands of the bank that services her loan. Reporting with painstaking detail the obstacles Bank of America has thrown up as Katie Diaz spent months trying to secure a mortgage modification that lowered her monthly costs, Goodman’s piece highlights the reality too many homeowners have faced during this crisis — the dropped calls, lost paperwork and poor customer service that leaves them frustrated, confused and unsure whether they will be able to save their home.
Unfortunately, the author assigned much of the blame for these failures not to Bank of America, Ms. Diaz’s servicer — but rather to the $25 billion mortgage servicing settlement that Bank of America and four other servicers agreed to this spring. The largest mortgage relief effort in history, the settlement provides $17 billion in consumer relief and billions more to states that can be used for proven anti-foreclosure efforts like housing counseling. It also creates tough new customer service standards that require servicers to put an end to the kind of behavior faced by Ms. Diaz.
However, from Goodman’s piece, the reader is left to believe that the settlement has failed before it has even fully taken effect.