Save the Dream tour disappointing some homeownersPosted: Updated:
It puts holiday shopping lines to shame.
You may remember -- early October -- when some 40,000 desperate homeowners waited for hours, some even camped out, at the Phoenix Convention Center for the chance to modify their mortgage.
3 On Your Side was there from beginning to end, as many homeowners walked away smiling, relieved that they'd get to stay in their home.
But that was then...
“They call it the save the dream tour, it's more like give you a nightmare,” homeowner Elizabeth McKenna said.
Since the Save the Dream tour sponsored by a group called NACA, we've received numerous complaints from viewers like McKenna, who claim the housing help was all hype.
“You get given this lovely basket of hope, and then someone takes it away from you,” she said.
Complaints we received varied, but all say it's been difficult to get answers from NACA since the tour.
“The anxiety of waiting for a phone call is hard,” McKenna said.
Some claim it's been nearly impossible to get anyone on the phone to tell them the status of their loan modification, even when it was supposed to be a done deal.
Beverly Dupree attended both the Phoenix and Las Vegas tour stops.
“What no one has followed up on until now with me sitting here, with us sitting here, is what happens when those people walk away,” Dupree said.
To try to get some answers, 3 On Your Side called NACA CEO Bruce Marks, who we interviewed when the tour was in town, he said he'd get back to us.
Instead, we got a call from NACA director Donald Meadows, who told us 80% of the people who sought help have received it.
We asked for proof, as well as answers to specific questions like how much NACA is compensated for each completed modification.
We didn’t receive either, but in a statement, a representative writes:
NACA is by far the most effective organization in assisting borrowers with an unaffordable mortgage. Everyone who comes to NACA for assistance has already failed in working with their lender/servicers. NACA’s staff is the hardest working and most effective in the mortgage industry. Their training and knowledge goes far beyond the requirements for a HUD Certified housing organization which NACA is the largest.
We have legally binding agreements with all the major lenders and investors to achieve these affordable solutions. We have the same frustration as does President Obama with these lenders. That is why we continue to do the Save the Dream events. As a result of the recent ones in Charlotte and in New York City where over two thousand borrowers stormed the corporate offices of Chase and marched through Wall Street, the lenders are now submitting these solutions. NACA is only paid by some lenders when the borrower receives an affordable mortgage payment and makes their payments on time.
No one is more effective, committed and relentless than NACA. While thousands of borrowers received solutions at NACA’s Save the Dream event in Phoenix, we continue to work with many others to achieve similar outcomes. Borrowers need to access their web-file at naca.com where they can make an appointment with a NACA Negotiator to address any issues and to check their status.
NACA is doing what no one has ever done. We are doing what the mortgage industry and government have failed to do. NACA is doing it very well and will continue with both the advocacy and results.
Since 3 On Your Side began looking into complaints, Mike Hills, who spent 16 hours at the event, says he’s finally seeing progress.
“Since you guys have contacted me, NACA actually gave me a call this morning. The first time since October,” Hills said.
Two months after the tour, Hills was told his modification had been approved and his mortgage would be reduced.
It's a position countless other Valley homeowners wish they were in, and where the ones we spoke with expected to be by now.
“I'm still losing my house, my 8 year old is still going to have to move, to move schools, this isn't helping, the hope's gone,” McKenna said.