My Loan Was Transferred From Ocwen to PHH and My Home was Sold at Sheriff Sale. Is This Legal?
We have seen scenarios recently where New Jersey homeowners had their Ocwen mortgage transferred to PHH while they were being reviewed for a loan modification and their homes were sold at a sheriff sale. In these cases, the clients did not have “actual notice” of the Sheriff sale. This can be a violation of federal law.
In June 2019, PHH Mortgage officially merged with Ocwen, all but dropping the Ocwen name and doing business as PHH Mortgage and Liberty Home Equity Solutions. Because of this, loan transfers between Ocwen and PHH are increasingly common. However, your lender is still required to properly notify you of any transfers and honor any existing loan modifications or other agreements.
Requirements for Loan Transfers in New Jersey
While loan transfers between lenders can sometimes come as a surprise to homeowners, it is a common practice and, when done properly, should not disrupt monthly mortgage payments.
Lenders are allowed to sell your mortgage at any point during the life of your loan. However, federal law prohibits them from altering the terms of your mortgage, such as the monthly payment amount or interest rates. Your new lender is also required to honor any approved loan modifications. In other words, the sale should not affect you in any way other than who collects the payments.
You are also legally entitled to be properly notified of the sale or transfer. If mortgage servicing changes, you should receive two pieces of mail informing you of the change in servicer:
- A “goodbye” letter from your current servicer at least 15 days before the effective date of the transfer.
- A “hello” letter from your new servicer within 15 days of the effective date of the transfer.
Your new lender is violating federal law if they are:
- Failing to transfer your Modification Application
- Neglecting to notify you of the transfer.
- Ignoring a loan modification or any prior agreement you had with your previous lender.
- Claiming you are in default when they have accepted your monthly payment.
- Changing the terms of your mortgage agreement.
- Charging late fees within the grace period of 60 days after the effective date of the transfer (per RESPA)
- Improperly pursuing foreclosure when you have not broken the terms of your mortgage.
Contact Ira J. Metrick About Ocwen to PHH Loan Transfers in NJ
If your loan was transferred from Ocwen to PHH without your knowledge, and you are facing a sheriff sale as a result, it may not be too late to save your home. Contact the Law Office of Ira J. Metrick today to discuss your options.