Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Mortgage Woes: The Unbearable Coolness of Me

I have already screwed up my mortgage payments due to a misunderstood codicil in the online paperwork for an automatic payment plan. My first automatic payment was taken out, but then the second one wasn't. When I called, I find out that the company cancelled the plan because I hadn't paid an extra month in advance (which I couldn't get from the documentation). I also was charged a $52 late charge, and $12 for paying with the customer service agent (instead of mailing it).

I write this because I find it hard to believe that this is really my fault. These strange rules are put in place to suck the life out of people who can barely afford their mortgages as it is. I mean, I have a Master's degree and I couldn't figure it out. If I had let it go...not called when I didn't see the next payment withdrawn...?

Things like this have happened frequently to me. For example, there was the time when I had to use AOL to dial up. I tried to cancel, but the person on the phone told me "well, you have 25 days left of service, why not cancel at the end of the 25 days?". I told them okay, well then cancel me after those days. However, it doesn't work that way, you have to call them precisely when you want to cancel. So I accidentally forgot to cancel it, and ended up with 6 months of AOL payments on my credit card statements. Since my payments were made automatically, I didn't notice the line item for the AOL. One month I knew I hadn't used the card, and still was billed, so I checked into it and--lo and behold--an AOL charge. I had not so much as checked an email or surfed the web for 8 months, and still, nobody thought to contact me to cancel my account. How much money does AOL make from these strange rules?

Well, they might have made some money on me, but my level of animosity towards AOL (yes, I know, animosity is an unhealthy emotion) is high. I would never recommend anyone use their services. Ever. And my mortgage company, Countrywide (after the loan was sold to a different company than I was dealing with originally-- apparently a common practice), has instantly left a bad taste in my mouth.

Where is the good customer service?

So what's funny about this? Nothing. Just sharing.

What's wonderful about this? Well, all it took for me to get over the Countrywide debacle last night was a few pieces of pizza and a new episode of The Closer. It's the simple things.

Much love to the fantastically sly Universe.


Nubia DuVall said...

First I love the post's title, which sounds like the sequal to Milan's book "Unbearable Lightness of Being." kudos for that.

Also, I know how you feel. I am dealing with getting my money back from the government right now because they taxed me on income I made in Taiwan (I forgot to fill out that damn foreign income exempt sheet although I had remembered the year before). Legal documents in this country are created to confuse.

FranIAm said...

Rion- if you want me to interview you I will I will happily I will... you are hard to find. You can email me via my blog festinalente-franiam.

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