What to do if your mortgage is sold by your lender

If you have outstanding home mortgage payments and your lender sells your mortgage loan to another company, you may be concerned about how this will affect you. In most cases, the transfer of your loan doesn’t have to change how you make payments, though there are some things to be aware of. Keep reading for more information on what to do if your mortgage is sold by your lender.

Know you have the right to complain

Mortgage lenders are regulated entities and as such, must adhere to certain standards of conduct when they sell mortgages. The Mortgage Disclosure Improvement Act of 2008 (MDIA) prohibits anyone from selling a non-performing mortgage loan that was originated on or after January 1, 2009 without providing specific disclosures to both buyers and sellers.

If a lender sold your mortgage without following these regulations, you may have a case for fraud. Now it’s time to get organized, because what you’re about to do will require evidence in order for a judge or jury to take you seriously.

Know you have time

While it may seem like a good idea to toss out any documentation that relates to an old or sold mortgage, don’t. You’ll want as much information as possible on record in case you have any problems with your new loan and/or servicer.

Also, even if it looks like you are no longer responsible for paying back a loan, always stay on top of payments since it can take time for the bank or other lending organization to remove you from their records and systems.

If anything goes wrong—for example, late fees or incorrect payment amounts—you’ll want documented proof that things weren’t working correctly. Keep all paperwork from closing day until there are no obligations left on the account.

Keep all documents, emails and notes

It may seem like common sense, but keep all correspondence between you and your mortgage servicer. It may be necessary later in order to understand why things happened as they did or establish a paper trail of evidence.

Keep documents on who you spoke with, what was said and when. Organize everything, both electronically and physically. (If you’re having trouble accessing your information online — or it’s not being released — ask for a physical copy.)

You’ll need all of that documentation at some point as you work toward a resolution with your servicer.

Ask questions on social media

If you can’t locate an email address for customer service and a phone number doesn’t work, then it might be time to ask questions on social media.

A spokesperson for Ocwen Financial Corp., one of three firms that oversees mortgages sold by financial institutions, said customers should contact their servicer (the company or entity collecting payments on behalf of a lender) rather than reach out on social media. If you have questions about servicing a loan, it would be better to reach out directly than via a public forum, she said.

Either way, make sure you’re working with someone in person who can understand your specific concerns—and explain how they plan to resolve them—before leaving any messages online.

Be patient

If a lender has sold your mortgage to another company, you are still required by law to keep up with payments. The company that purchased your loan is known as a servicer, and they will work directly with you in order to stay on top of future payments.

If something goes wrong or you need help with anything related to your loan, there are a few steps you can take for help. First, start by speaking with an attorney who specializes in foreclosure.

You can find legal counsel in many different places, such as from someone who works at an organization like American Bar Association (or similar) in your state of residence.

Get legal advice

If you have a question about an existing mortgage and aren’t sure what to do, first of all, talk with your mortgage servicer.

Most likely, they can help. If you still don’t have an answer or think you might need legal advice, then contact a real estate attorney who specializes in real estate law. Or ask friends and family for recommendations—many attorneys will give brief consultations for free over the phone or even via video chat.

Real estate lawyers typically work on a contingency basis—meaning they don’t get paid unless they win your case—so there won’t be any upfront cost or financial risk when you consult with one.

Don’t give up until you get what you want!

You know you want to remain in your home, but unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like that’s going to happen.

You can stay in your home by working with a new loan servicer, who may work with you on a forbearance plan or even help modify your loan. Just because one company was unable to help you doesn’t mean that another won’t be able to!

Keep asking around until you find someone who will offer you a solution. When it comes down to it, persistence pays off. Don’t give up until you get what you want!