Imagine you’re applying for a home loan. You’ve spent months calculating costs, comparing home prices, researching neighborhoods, and you’ve finally found a home you love and think you can afford. You meet with a lender and you’re assured that you will qualify for a loan to buy that home. Based on the lender’s assurances that you qualify, you pay a non-refundable earnest money deposit to the seller. After putting down a $12,000 deposit, you’re told that you do not qualify for the loan. Your non-refundable earnest money deposit appears to be lost.
That’s what happened to Navid and his wife.
“All of these things were new to us,” Navid said. In a very short period of time, we lost $12,000.”
Navid tried to contact the lender who had given him false assurances that he would qualify for the mortgage loan, but was getting nowhere. With no help in sight, he assumed his money was lost forever. Then he found out about the CFPB.
“One night we were watching the Daily Show with Jon Stewart and the director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was the guest,” Navid remembered. “He talked about this organization and what they do.”
After the show, he decided to submit a complaint and soon after, the couple received full compensation and a formal apology from the lender that had assured him he would be approved for the mortgage loan.
“I came to [the] United States because I thought this is a country [where] there are rules and regulations, and the government is for the people. This is why I chose this country,” Navid said. He added that it’s a wonderful feeling to know that there are parts of the government that are trying to reach out and help people.
We know that buying a home can be complicated, and that’s why we’ve created tools to help home buyers understand and shop for mortgages. We’re glad that Navid and his wife got the help they needed, and we’re here for you, too! To share your experience or learn more from others, visit us at consumerfinance.gov/yourstory.
Updated July 22, 2015 to clarify consumer complaint and outcome.