Boiler Room Bust: Hatch Investigating Ameriquest

by Alex Stenback on July 29, 2005

Boiler_room_2 The Twin Cities Business journal and the Strib report that Minnesota Attorney General Mike Hatch, along with attorneys general from a dozen other states are investigating the sales and lending practices of Ameriquest Mortgage:

"Hatch and attorneys general…are looking into allegations that the Orange, Calif.-based mortgage [company] falsified the income of loan applicants, used inflated appraisals to overstate the value of homes and changed loan terms before closing."

For those not familiar, Ameriquest is a boiler room outfit (contrary to the "baseball-n-apple pie" image their well-crafted ads and sponsorships suggest) that makes liberal use of spam, telemarketing and other sketchy, high pressure tactics to solicit customers and originate loans – these are the people that call you at home, and if you reply to mortgage spam, odds are Ameriquest will be one of the first to call – we tried it.

Here’s one particularly vomit-inducing excerpt from the Strib:

Ameriquest loan officers routinely falsified loan applications — inflating the income of applicants, making up occupations for them and sometimes even creating fake letterhead and business cards…"People were getting loans that in no way, shape or form they could afford."

Our recommendation would be to steer as far and wide from Ameriquest as you possibly can, and we applaud the states who are going after these people.
· Hatch Investigates Ameriquest Sales Practices [business journal]
· Hatch Investigating Ameriquest [strib]

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Lawrence Green November 14, 2005 at 6:34 am

My Name Is Lawrence Green

I have a story to tell about Ameriquest and a loan that I obtained, unfortunately I cannot tell it myself but I hope I have left enough information for Bob, George and their friends to tell my story for me…

All of the photos are of my home and the condition it was in when I did the loan , I can prove this is the same condition when the appraiser came out!

On January of 2003 I obtained a loan from Ameriquest Mortgage Company, who now wants to be known as A.M.C. I wanted to get 10 – 15k for home repairs and medicine for the prostate cancer I was suffering from. My home was not on three acres.

My house was the most valuable asset I have ever had besides my family and faith in the Lord, I am a religious man who believes man should trust one another, so I did, I trusted Ameriquest and their employees to do the right thing for an old man sick with cancer.

My name is Lawrence Green I am a seventy two year old African American Man and have a limited income from SSI and my Pension in the amount of $1.423 my mortgage payments were With Fairbanks Mortgage Company at 11.6%, payments at $404.18 0n a $40.000.00 loan . My eyes were not too good and I had to rely on the Ameriquest people to get me through this confusing and complicated loan process.

I obviously got in over my head with Ameriquest because when I did the loan for repairs , to be done on my house; it was appraised at seventy three thousand dollars which there is a photo of the appraisal

The actual value of my property was probably in the mid 20k area so it looks like my previous lender got me too! The LOAN amount , ameriquest stuck me with , was for sixty thousand , I didn’t know I was getting this much, my loan application clearly states 10-15k for repairs.

There are some issues with my home and I don’t believe Ameriquest should have approved me for a loan in the first place.
Maybe I needed some money to help me survive this cancer but the loan Ameriquest gave me could only make my health worse, so much stress. Truthfully the Ameriquest people should have called the health department and reported me living there. I did not make $3.000.00 a month like the stated income letter said.

Maybe I could have lived in a facility with A/C or Heat without water leaking into my rooms from the roof… The photos are the condition of my home today just the way I left it when the guys in white coats came with a stretcher and took me out. As you can clearly see by the pictures,the work ordered on the invoice below was not done.
AMERIQUEST PHONY WORK ORDER WHERE’S THE PHONE NUMBER, OF THE CONTRACTOR?

THE ROOF LEAKS WHEN IT RAINS.

After I got the loan I had more debt than I originally had, with a higher monthly payment than I previously had along with my bills and meds to pay for my cancer treatment, I am 72 years old, I didn’t need this stress, it was only five months before I couldn’t pay the bills and the rent any more, one thing became more important than the other, I had cancer to beat and in my current monetary situation I was trapped. I did not have $10.000.00 in a checking account like the form below states , I had about five hundred in the bank.

My first non payment date was 06- 01- 04, only 5 months later. I had lived a long life and all I wanted to do is live or die in peace in my home.

My interest rate was 10.8% The closing costs were about $5.469.00 Many unexplained fees and in some cases explained wrong on the disbursement sheet.Why did the notary get a $300.00 appraisal fee on my closing doc.

Fortunately I had a close friend and a daughter to look after me for a short time, but they were not able to help out with the bills much.

AMERIQUEST STATED , THE LOAN I WAS GETTING WAS TO HELP ME DO THE REPAIRS

I don’t recall getting any money at the closing , in order to do the repairs . my eye sight was really bad , and the ameriquest representative who came to my house to do the closing , helped me sign my name to these documents , they never gave me any signed copies , i put my trust into ameriquest , and they did me wrong – look at my monthly ameriquest statement – higher then Fairbanks statement ..

The repairs never got done , the mold and mildew from the roof leaking , no heat for the winter months – i was freezing on cold winter nights , AMERIQUEST JUST DIDN’T CARE !!!!!

Ameriquest said they would send the men out to install the heat , but no one showed up , I called many times , the winter was getting colder , still no heat

I told my daughter that I didn’t ask for this much of a loan amount and that it was too much for me to handle. I told my daughter that I was becoming even more ill because of the stress I was enduring along with the cancer and this bad loan; things are not too good for me these days.

Cancer is no longer an issue for me nor is the bad loan but I hope I have touched some of you who have taken the time to read my story and keep this from happening to others.

Don’t feel bad for me because I am now the richest man I know, I have a new home actually it’s a kingdom. My Name Is Lawrence Green, I died from a heart attack in January 2005, not in what was once my home but in an Ameriquest Mortgage Company foreclosed home almost exactly one year later.

Thank you Antoinette Green – Daughter of Lawrence Green , for all your help and support and God Bless you Mr. Green, You are home…

http://groups.msn.com/AmeriquestMortgagefraud/shoebox.msnw?albumlist

Zmajrsi June 3, 2007 at 11:57 am
Zmajrsi June 3, 2007 at 11:57 am

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