Thursday, July 3, 2014


Get The Information You Need About Your Mortgage For Free

Ever feel like your mortgage statement tells only part of the story about what you owe your lender?
I see it all the time :  my client tells me he’s current on the mortgage.  The lender tells me the client owes a bunch of money, for fees, charges, and expenses the homeowner never knew about.
Mortgage servicing being the mess that it is, finding out what you really owe hasn’t been easy.  Worse, some servicers have exploited borrowers with inflated or imaginary fees added to the loan.
Well, the rules changed Jan. 10, 2014.
The changes favor the homeowner and come with less wait for information and more clout for the inquiring homeowner.

Improved  Qualified Written Requests

Federal law found in RESPA has long given borrowers the right to  dispute errors in the servicing of their loan.  The right is exercised with a Qualified Written Request addressed to the servicer.

Under the old rules, the time lines for response to QWR’s were often too long to be useful. The servicer had 20 business days just to acknowledge receipt of the request and 60 business days to respond. 

Further, the regulations were unclear as to what the servicer had to tell you if you just wanted information.  The Catch 22 was that you might not know you had a dispute, which was clearly covered by RESPA, if you couldn’t get information about what the servicer had done.
No more.

New rules, new inquiries

Effective in January, 2014, the time to acknowledge the inquiry is shortened to 5 business days.  The time for a substantive response shrinks to 30 business days.
The new rules recognize two different kinds of requests, adding a Request for Information category and a Notice of Error.

All that is required to get information about the status of your home loan is
·         name of the borrower
·         account number of the loan
·         description of the information requested

QWR in the past had to be addressed to a designated address the servicer maintained. Only, getting that address was a chore by itself.
Now, the servicer has to provide the address on its website and in any communications about assistance available from the servicer.  

You can do this yourself.  The new regulations make clear that your agent, such as your attorney, is entitled to make the request for you, as well.    Here’s a model request for information letter you can adapt, listing the kinds of information you might want to get from your loan servicer.

Who owns my note

With the new rules, servicers have to provide the name, address and other contact information about who currently owns the note.  No more hiding who the real party in interest is.
Better yet, this information is to be provided within 10 business days.

Inaction has consequences

Failure to comply with the new regulations comes at increased cost to the non responsive  servicer.  A homeowner who does not get timely and complete information in response to an inquiry is entitled to
·         any actual damages caused by the failure
·         a statutory penalty of $2000 if the failure is shown to be part of a pattern of nonompliance
·         reasonable attorneys fees and other costs of suit
The controlling law is found at 12 USC 2605; the right to damages is found in subsection (f).

Add QWR to annual checkup

The details of the servicing of your loan have a tendency to vanish when the servicing is transferred from one servicer to another.
If you don’t stay on top of the situation, when an unexpected issue about your loan pops up when you want to sell or refinance, it may not be possible to go back in time to sort out the servicer’s claims.
Add an annual or bi annual request for information about your home loan to your “to do” list, along with checking your credit report for free.


Chase Attention: Consumer Care Research
Mail Code 01-14-7302
P.O. Box 24696
Columbus, OH 43224-0696
Facsimile: 614-422-7575


  1. A qualified written request known as a QWR is used to address concerns about a mortgage loan. Generally, a letter is sent to the mortgage servicer as a qualified written request under RESPA 6 violations. The QWR addresses issues concerning the mortgage loan.
    If you wish to know more you can visit-qualified written request


    The Mail Code is OH4-7302, not 01-14-7302