Get Gephardt | Stories - Consumer Attorney: Guaranteed Mortgage Modifications are a Farce
Wednesday, April 23 2014, 09:23 AM MDT
Consumer Attorney: Guaranteed Mortgage Modifications are a Farce
(KUTV) Facing imminent foreclosure, Dennis Rowley though he'd found the answer to save his Kearns home. He got a call from The Porter Group, a mortgage-modification company out of Florida.

"They were guaranteeing that they would be able to go in and get our loan modified," he said.

Dennis says it's the guarantee which sold him. Paperwork from The Porter Group reds, "If we cannot negotiate a solution that will improve your mortgage situation, we will gladly refund 100% of our fee back to you."

"After talking to them many times, I decided yeah we should do this," Dennis said.

Dennis paid $2500 up front and at first things seemed to be going well.

"The bank had sent us notification that they were in contact with The Porter Group," he said.

But a short time later a notice arrived on Dennis' door. His house was going up for auction. Dennis says he quickly called The Porter Group.

"They said don't worry about it," Dennis said. "The sale is on hold."

But on hold it was not. A few days later Dennis says a woman knocked on his door and informed him that she now owned his home and he needed to leave.

Dennis says he was devastated and he called The Porter Group to collect on their money back guarantee. But despite numerous calls, Dennis says no one ever responds.

"We cannot make contact with them at all," he said.

Frustrated and fed up, Dennis decided to Get Gephardt.

As we began digging we found The Porter Group's website is still active. But when you call the number listed on the website it rings to a Florida auto-repair shop whose owner doesn't know anything about The Porter Group. Several emails from Get Gephardt to several different email addresses within The Porter Group got no reply.

As we dug deeper we found surprising public records filed with Florida's secretary of state. Despite a company claiming to be The  Porter Group taking Dennis' money in 2012, according to the records, The Porter Group went out of business way back in 2005.

Utah consumer attorney Michele Andersen-West says she is not surprised we cannot locate The Porter Group.

"People [taking] money up front is a red flag," she said. "By the time the consumer realizes that there's a red flag the company has moved, shut their doors, [taken] the money and moved on."

Andersen-West says anyone who takes money up front from a distressed homeowner and guarantees being able to obtain a loan modification is a liar. She says there is never a certainty when dealing with lenders that a loan modification will be accepted.

Andersen-West suggests that people in danger of losing their homes work personally with a local lender by going into their office in person and trying to work something out. She says if the lender is a national chain the best way to try to get a modification is by using an attorney who can work with the lender's attorney.

As for Dennis, he never did get his guaranteed refund. He lost his money, and his home.

By Matt Gephardt
Produced by Michelle Poe
Edited by Aaron Colborn
Photography by Brian Morris and Mike Sadowski

(Copyright 2014 Sinclair Broadcasting Group)Consumer Attorney: Guaranteed Mortgage Modifications are a Farce

News Photos & Videos - Submit Your Photos Here

More Gephardt Stories

Get Gephardt: Movers destroy table, refuse to cover damage
Hidden leak costs homeowner, Insurance company refuses to help
Wallet Watch: Workers taking advantage of health care plans
Lender refuses to drop PMI
Wallet Watch: Big ticket items sitting on store shelves, Twitter ads, Seaworld shares
Major retailer refuses to honor warranty claim
Wallet Watch: Treasury department takes fake bills off streets, gas prices
Good question: Has this been a smaller fire season in Utah?
Wallet Watch: e-Cigarettes
Comcast Scam Investigation
Insurance bills for out-of-network hospitals
Late mail delivery investigation
Good Question: How did running with bulls tradition begin?
FedEx fined for drug deliveries, back to school prices rise and Utah unemployment drops further
Yellow Page scammers targeted by FTC
Airline fees, Google looks at security flaws and Microsoft announces layoffs
Comcast in damage control, automaker recalls continue and Hersheys instates a price hike
Illegible finger prints stall adoption
Citigroup pays for mortgage crisis, president pushes infrastructure projects and a new Airbus
Good Question: Why does a soccer ball bend?
Disabled woman loses benefits because of prepaid funeral plans
FTC Complaint: Amazon got rich off unauthorized in-app purchases
Woman's vehicle seized by police after bogus police report
McNeil trial witness now allegedly a deceitful contractor
RSL fans towed despite paying to park
Costly colonoscopy following a man's belly ache
Good news for job hunters and celebration cost on the rise
Arizona baseball games blacked out in Utah
Gas prices hit six year high, no guns allowed in Target and Google buys Songza
FTC seeks hundreds of millions from T-Mobile for cramming
FTC: T-Mobile made millions with bogus charges
Women's football league leaves supporters hungry, for cookies
Good Question: "Can you be arrested for not paying a debt?"
Cable company stands up customer thrice
L'Oreal's deceptive advertising, GM recalls additional vehicles and new airline threats
Kleargear ordered to pay $300k to Utah couple
Supreme Court rules against internet television streaming company
What to do when winning doesn't pay
Isolation at work, home prices jump and AT&T/DirecTV merger
Bundling delay costs consumer
Airbag recalls, Americans struggle to save and pushing for paid maternity leave
Good Question: "Why do grads wear square-caps and gowns?"
Smartphone kill switch lowers theft, Google encourages girls to code and Harley Davidson goes electric
Auto-warranty company slow to give refunds in Utah, nationwide
GM recall lawsuit, fed talks interest rates and Amazon reveilles new phone
Luggage lost for more than a year
Home construction slows, Dr. Oz testifies and tech companies target home security
Good Question "What if you leave your mail in the box?"
More GM recalls, PF Chang credit issues and Priceline merges with OpenTable
Soccer hooliganing: Scams target fans
Possible gas price spike, beer makers slow the flow and Hobby Lobby's deceptive advertising practices
Glitch shows Medicaid recipient underpaid
Frequent flier changes, Amazon's aggressive negotiations and Subway strikes deal with Keurig
Lender error leaves man with huge student loans
Utah's small business grade, smart phone wallets and Microsoft boasts games at E3
Fine Print Allows Movers Unlimited Time to Deliver
Milk Prices Rise, Amazon's New Payment Method and Job Growth Numbers
Good Question: Is Throwing Out the First Pitch Hard?
GM Recall, Beastie Boy Lawsuit and Americans Finical Happiness
Jewelry Store Balks on Honoring Promised Warranty
Advertise with us!


Pay It Forward
Fresh Living
Family Matters
Road Trippin
Hooked On Utah

Advertise with us!