I recently saw a story on A Current Affair about a bank overcharging its clients. In their typical fashion, the show made it sound alarming, but on further reflection it had potentially huge consequences for property investors.
The story showed that there were errors in 54 per cent of monthly loan statements, that 80 per cent of these errors are in the favour of the banks and the average monthly error is $242. One woman checked just seven months’ worth of statements and found nearly $2,000 worth of errors.
As a property investor, these kinds of errors could be costing you a fortune – especially if you have a number of loans giving you an even bigger exposure to this problem of bank errors.
Apparently all types of loans are affected: Interest Only, Principal and Interest, Line of Credit and Offset Accounts; all have shown high incidences of errors.
Late last year, the National Australia Bank admitted to $52 million in errors in customers’ accounts. That equated to an average of $945 for each loan-holding customer. What is even more amazing about this admission is that the vast majority of customers had not even noticed. The NAB are now in the process of returning this overcharged money to customers, but what can property investors do to protect themselves from this situation?
The story went on to profile Mortgage Watchdog, a company that has an easy to use piece of software that finds these errors for you and helps you get back the money you are owed by your lender. They showed Leanne Brighton, a Melbourne woman who used the software to find almost $2,000 in overcharges in only the first seven months of her investment loan.
I found all this so interesting that I contacted the guys at Mortgage Watchdog to ask more about their software.
They were so confident that users will have errors in their loans that they even offer a “Success Guarantee” – they guarantee that by using their software you will find errors in your loan or they will refund your purchase price PLUS give you an additional $250 for your time.
To view the whole story on bank overcharging and how, as a property investor it could be costing you a fortune (and better still, how you can get this money back), click on the following link: Mortgage Watchdog . It makes some very interesting reading.
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