Attn: Rude Loan Officer (aka Mr. Red)
Subject: 50 Shades of Rude
First of all, I would like to thank you for your service. At least, the first 5 percent of your service, in which you were friendly, courteous, and promised to bend over backwards to be of assistance. I will respond in kind by being friendly and smiley for the first 5 percent of this letter. (Note: That portion is over. Commence sarcasm.)
Our transaction was quite serendipitous at first, don’t you think? I called my mortgage holder’s phone number, you picked up the phone. I wanted to refinance, you had loans, plus as a shining bonus, all our mortgage information already populated in your system. All I had to do was say “refinance,” and bada bing, bada boom, you had my numbers. Within minutes, I had super-duper security clearance to access documents to sign away thousands upon thousands of dollars of my past, present and future.
But as with so many relationships, communication difficulties crept in. You made me promises, Mr. Red. Promises you didn’t keep. Promises to answer my questions, to respond to emails into the late hours of the evening, to provide guidance when I was unclear.
Soon, you started making demands.
“Send me your W2s,” you stated. And I obeyed. I emailed them to you, and within that email I asked you to shed light on the process for me. I numbered three specific questions, to which I hoped you’d respond.
You did respond, but not with answers. Instead, you once again demanded I send my W2s. You advised me that my non-compliance was holding the process up. Yet I’d done it. I had the email trail to prove it. In fact, you were responding to the email in which they’d been sent.
You asked for check stubs. I sent you check stubs. You claimed they were the wrong dates. Yet they were not, they were the dates you requested.
“What is this crazy game?” I wondered. “The dyslexic loan officer leading the ADD customer? Who will mind the details?”
My husband and I looked at the numbers, Mr. Red, and they weren’t what you’d told me on the phone. And so I called you. I asked for my payment information.
“Just sign them. They’re right. You look through the papers I sent you, and the information you need is there.”
“I don’t see it,” I replied.
“I don’t know what you’re looking at. I can’t see your screen. Do you understand that? I can’t see what document you’re looking at.”
This was the first time I thought to myself, “Well, Duh.”
Your patronizing tone rubbed me wrong, Mr. Red. I was prepared to complain. I called your office to find your supervisor. I composed an email. I planned to leave you, Mr. Red, leave you and just hope you didn’t spit in my loan. I’d throw your threats of rate locks and wasted appraisal fees to the wind.
“Give him one last chance,” a quiet voice said. The quiet, kind voice who worries about others and admonishes me to give them second, third chances. She concocted scenarios of who you might be. Did you have tiny children waiting for daddy’s paycheck to buy them food? A beloved pet cat awaiting expensive chemotherapy treatments? Were you just a lugubrious man just looking for a hint of kindness in a cruel world? Would my complaint get you fired?
I called again, determined to find answers. Again, our conversation contorted and strained, and I wondered why oh why I endured your abuse.
“I need to know what my payment will be,” I said.
You spouted fees, discounts, percentages and principle.
“No,” I said, “I just need to know what the number is that I need to write on my check.”
Your essence arrived in full glory. “Mrs. Parnell, you do not understand. You are not writing a check. You are applying for a loan. You are not asking your questions right, therefore I cannot answer them. Each time you do this, you are holding up this process. If you want answers, you need to call me and ask the right questions. But I am busy and do not have time for your calls.”
Did you feel your heart pounding as I did? Did anger swirl in your soul, as it did in mine?
“You need to ask me your questions now, and we need to get this resolved, because after this you will be corresponding only with Mr. Blue, the loan processor. So whatever we need to discuss, it needs to be now.”
Oh no, say it ain’t so, baby. Tell me you’re not breaking up with me. No more patronizing? You’re going to leave me in the hands of the friendly fellow who answers my questions and even adds common pleasantries? The one who knows how to dot an I and cross a T? But who will try to make me feel stupid? What will I do without our charming chitchat?
Farewell, Mr. Red. I’m done with you. And hellooo, Mr. Blue! (Psst. I’ll tell you a secret. Customers really do like the nice guy.)
Overland Park mom and 913 freelancer Emily Parnell blogs at mom2momkc.com.