The top complaints about mortgages
More than a third of the mortgage complaints received by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau come from people who can no longer afford their payments.
This post comes from Seth Fiegerman at partner site MainStreet.
If nothing else, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has served as a great avenue for consumers to vent their money problems in the hopes of getting them fixed.
The government agency received 13,210 complaints from consumers in the second half of 2011, more than 9,000 of which were about credit cards, according to data (.pdf file) from the CFPB's semiannual operations report. Interestingly, mortgages proved to be the second most popular cause for complaint among consumers, with 2,326 complaints filed.
The actual process of applying and signing for loans, which the CFPB addressed last year with a new set of forms, accounted for just shy of 15% of the mortgage complaints that the CFPB received. Many more complained about the process of paying down their loans.
As you can see in the chart above, more than a third of the complaints received had to do with customers who were no longer able to pay off their mortgages and tried to renegotiate the terms of the loan or else face the prospect of foreclosure.
In some ways, this comes as little surprise, given the sheer number of underwater homes and the difficulty many Americans have faced in convincing banks to modify their mortgages. Yet it's also a testament to the fact that the agency needs to continue its efforts to regulate mortgage servicers and push for alternatives to foreclosure.
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