BofA Tortures My Sister With Mortgage Hoops

Hilary shares the struggles her sister is undergoing to close on a house with a mortgage through Bank of America. The closing date has been delayed and the loan officials keep demanding more paperwork and explanations of bank transactions.

Her story:

My sister is trying to buy her first house with her husband. Both of them have excellent credit (700-800 range), and they’re putting 20% down. BoA offered them a great rate (below 4%), and their loan lock expires 12/24, at which point they probably would have to get a higher rate.

BoA is making them jump through some ridiculous hoops to get their loan. They were originally scheduled to close on 12/10, but on 12/8 BoA informed them that the bank had just gotten new computer systems that made that date impossible. So they had to postpone until 12/14. On Thursday, 12/9, the bank started hounding them for more info on their recent transactions – they wanted explanations for every deposit over 3 figures, except for those that were clearly paychecks. Well, there are several of those, since my sister just had her birthday; our grandmother died and left her some money; the other grandmother disbursed our inheritance early; a CD had matured, so the funds had reverted to my sister’s savings account; and her husband’s parents had given them some money. Each transaction had to be explained. They faxed in all the explanations on Friday, 12/10. Today, 12/13, they got more questions they had to answer. But the part that’s got me wondering is that BoA is now asking for the statement from the account that my brother-in-law’s parents transferred the money from prior to transferring it to my brother-in-law’s account. (Did you follow that?) My sister and her husband don’t have access to that account, and the money is deposited with no issues, so WTH?

It sounds to me like the bank is intentionally trying to derail this closing, so that my sister and her husband have to apply for a new, likely higher rate. I don’t even know if it’s legal for BoA to ask for my brother-in-law’s parents’ bank statements. Demanding this kind of detail of people with this kind of credit, and who are able to make up a down payment of 20%, and doing it at (almost literally) the last minute? This seems very fishy to me, and I’d like to hear what other people think of it.

Incidentally, it also appears that BoA is going through their checking accounts to look for these “issues”, since my sister and her husband have checking accounts with BoA. I’m going to think long and hard in the future about getting my mortgage from the same institution where I do my banking.

If you’ve closed on a house, what sorts of hassles did you endure?