So this guy from Chase calls my mom and tells her he can save x amount of dollars per month if she consolidates her mortgage and a personal loan. My mom, of course, being all about the cash flow, said she was interested.
Here's the deal:
Consolidate $74k mortgage ($528/mo) and a $1,600 personal loan ($97/mo). Her present mortgage pmt doesn't include escrow pmts for taxes and property insurance. He claims he can consolidate all this crap, roll in $1400 closing costs, escrow her taxes and insurance, all for around $520/month. All she has to pay out of pocket is $325 for an appraisal.
She takes the bait and says she interested. He tells her he's going to look for the best interest rate he can get and call her back. (I know, he had to have an interest rate before he could calculate the monthly payment.)
He calls back and tells her that the best he can do is $640 a month. What happened to the $520? Nobody knows. She says no thanks. And – you guessed it – he tells her the $325 appraisal fee is non-refundable.
But, wait! At no time did she authorize said fee. So now she's waiting to hear if they can refund the fee. You bet your sweet ass they can and will refund that fee.
What's really sad is that she was the victim of predatory lending with her other house. She refinanced a mortgage that she'd been paying on for like 15 years into a new mortgage at a 22% interest rate. Yes, twenty-two per cent. It lowered her monthly payment. I don't know how many times I have to tell her – Don't talk to banks.