Calling Costa Rica for Bank of America Loans

Modifying loans from Costa Rica?Phoenix Sitting in the Phoenix office of Advocates and Actions (www.advocatesandactions.org), I had trouble believing Isabelle and Teresa when they told me that when they talked to servicers for Bank of America loans they were talking to B of A representatives in Costa Rica.  This was the same Bank of America that received $45 Billion dollars in U.S. government funds as part of the bailout hardly in 2009 after all.  This was in fact the same Bank of America that had, well, how do I say it, AMERICA in its name.

Part of the back story goes back to Countrywide, which was bought by Bank of America.  Part of the Countrywide operation evolved into something called ReconTrust, separate corporation from Bank of America, but clearly identified on its website as a “wholly owned subsidiary” of Bank of America, located in Simi Valley, California outside of Los Angeles, not far from Countrywide’s old haunts in Calabasas.

In fact in the FAQ on the ReconTrust website, they are clear about the relationship:

What is your affiliation with Bank of America?

ReconTrust is a proud member of the Bank of America family of companies, a diversified financial services provider serving consumers and institutions with regard to a host of banking and lending needs. We are regulated by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC).

ReconTrust is structured as a separate entity from our affiliated banking and mortgage companies – this is to ensure our regulators and investors that we are truly independent.

Because I was still Mr. Doubting Thomas, when I asked Isabelle across the room for the third time if she was “really, really sure” that we were talking to servicers and negotiators on loan modifications in Arizona to folks based in Costa Rica, she didn’t say a word, but harrumphed and started dialing the ReconTrust number on the speaker phone until there was a clear answer and a young woman’s voice on the other end of the line asking her for her loan number.  As Isabelle gave a number, she asked the woman, “Where are you located?” and just as clearly the voice boomed across the room:  “Costa Rica.”

Costa Rica is a lovely country with a fascinatingly diverse landscape and open and friendly people.  But, with all due respect there is no way that our friends there are qualified and able to handle the difficult problems of loan modifications and servicing imperiled homeowners on the brink of foreclosures in Arizona.

It is not simply insensitive, it’s just wrong on every count.

How many rocks do we have to uncover to find the totally mess and mayhem that seems to be crawling beneath everything that Bank of America is doing in connection with mortgage loans?  How can anyone in the Treasury Department, government, or anywhere else expect that a Bank that now has more mischief than money, will ever be able to do the right thing for its mortgage holders?

The government needs to take over the foreclosure modification program 100%.

Oh, and I’m talking about the government of the United States, not the government of Costa Rica!  I wouldn’t want Bank of America and the Treasury Department to be any more confused than they already are.

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11 thoughts on “Calling Costa Rica for Bank of America Loans

  1. Just because a company offshores assistance to another country does not by any means lower the quality of work. Sure, most companies have faultered because of this, but take a step back to see if the quality of service you receive from an associate is any worse despite where they are from. Take a moment to think about the last few interactions with companies who provide your service. Think – was the experience poor? Does the company offshore their associates? Would my experience be better had I spoke to someone in America? Or would I have received the same level of ineffective service? Chances are, if the company service is poor, you can speak to someone in Tuscon or someone in San Jose and STILL receive subpar service. Sure the banks are in the crapper for this poor economy we are in but before making a blanket statement of “but, with all due respect there is no way that our friends there are qualified and able to handle the difficult problems of loan modifications and servicing imperiled homeowners on the brink of foreclosures in Arizona.” It’s not a matter of gepgraphy that determines the level of service you receive – it’s the quality of coaching and development and the amount of dedication the person has to their position. And you can be sure a company like Bank of America is funneling some of those TARP funds into the development of their associates – we are the ones paying their salaries by having accounts with them. I appreciate this article and found it very insightful – I think perhaps you should research the quality of their training programs over in Costa Rica before making an assumption that they don’t know what their doing because they’re not red-blooded Americans. Think about it – who’s making food in restaurants, cleaning hotel rooms, and generally running most of America? Certainly not us blue collared Americans…

  2. I currently work for b of A in Costa Rica, we were 1st CW employees and when Bofa took over we all her hired aswell for bank of america, so if the doubt is if we are the same and doing the same thing that all america people are doing then your answer is YES, I work for Home retention and we have to follow all US guidelines and goverments laws like we were working in US , we have comply to FDCPA and other acts, daily we received all communication by email saying how we are supose to work every day if you have any questions contact me at my personal email charlyefassy@hotmail.com my name is carlos

  3. Have u never done a serious research about Costa Rica?, please put more effort the next time, your article is racist and you can not cover that with ¨with all due respect¨

  4. I work at BOA in Costa Rica and you know what? you’re just some ignorant that has probably only met the uneducated latinos that migrate to the states for a future and work at landscaping. People here are perfectly capeable of handling the accounts you people have and are constantly trying to help home owner’s keep their homes.

    So you know what? fuck you, you racist fuck!

  5. It’s sad to read about someone that asked for a loan that can’t even afford, going in to a Foreclosure process and then blaming it on the people trying to help him/her keep his/her property.
    You might say “But I was able to afford it before the economic crisis” Ok that’s fine but is that Bank Of America Associate’s fault? I don’t think so. Do you?
    We work with the United States Law guidelines on our daily bases so if anything unpleasant for the customer happens here in Bank of America Costa Rica it would happen in Bank Of America United States as well.

    By the way “This was in fact the same Bank of America that had, well, how do I say it, AMERICA in its name.” Really? Ok Mr. Qualified, America is a Continent in which Costa Rica is located. You can keep calling The United Sates “America” but it still will be officially a Continent, not a Country. We all are Americans, you need to realize that as much as it hurts your pride.

  6. Sir with all due respect, and just FYI. I dont think that you can compare the service you are receiving in the US against CR. I think as you said “…Costa Rica is a lovely country…” OMG!! of course YES WE ARE!!! Do we have people qualified to provide the best service ever?? OH YES we do!!!. I dont really know if you have an account with us (Bank of America), but I invite you to call thinking that you are serviced by “people” same as the US, same as India and everywhere. Please dont think that your country is better than the other.. Maybe thats the reason why you (US people) have a lot of problems at this moment. 
    By the way… I’m Costarican.

    And one question… Do you speak spanish?? because I’m ussing your language… maybe because I’m “qualified” to do so.    

  7. Welcome to BofA’s SNUFF party. 

    If the shoe was on the other foot, and a Costa Rican daughter inherited the family home from her departed Dad, but which an outstanding loan on it, I wonder how this daughter, or any Coata Rican daughter would feel if she had to get approval from a foreign country based on it’s citizens’ customs and interpretations of the “ABC’s”.

    Take the Buddha symbol for peace. Peace is peace. And so why complain when a foreign country copies your peace symbol? And so Hitler copied this Buddhist symbol for the 3Rd Reich with the Swastika. 

    Oh but the darkness between Buddha and Hitler. 

  8. Welcome to BofA’s SNUFF party. 

    If the shoe was on the other foot, and a Costa Rican daughter inherited the family home from her departed Dad, but which an outstanding loan on it, I wonder how this daughter, or any Coata Rican daughter would feel if she had to get approval from a foreign country based on it’s citizens’ customs and interpretations of the “ABC’s”.

    Take the Buddha symbol for peace. Peace is peace. And so why complain when a foreign country copies your peace symbol? And so Hitler copied this Buddhist symbol for the 3Rd Reich with the Swastika. 

    Oh but the darkness between Buddha and Hitler. 

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