MEDFORD, NEW YORK -- To help assist my family and I with our first home purchase, we turned to Franklin First Financial. We dealt with Zachary **, a loan originator, whom at first hand came off as professional and gave off a friendly air to him. He spoke with such confidence behind his words that my family and I were more than excited and eager to start working with him. How that would all horribly change.
We found our dream house after a few months of searching. After making an offer and sorting through the essentials, we were recommended to Franklin First Financial around the end of May 2016. This is where the start of our relationship with Zachary ** began. Zachary told us to tell our landlord that for the month of June we would be living our month of security seeing as we would no longer be needing the apartment and would be closing on our house within the month's end. He assured us that out of all the closings meaning to happen and that were to come, ours was, "the only closing for sure happening in June".
The last week of June came quicker than any of us expected and we had still not been giving a closing date nor were we told that one wouldn't be coming to us, least not up until two days before June 30th. Zachary advised us to then stay at the apartment as we couldn't forcedly be removed, however upon learning that the landlord had already rented the apartment to another family, my own family and I couldn't nor would we leave them frantically searching for a roof over their heads.
We went ahead and booked a hotel, for which we were told we would only be needing for the approximately of one to one and a half week, with the promise of getting a reimbursement for such costs. We spent the Fourth of July weekend stressing on when we would hear back from the bank and where we would spend the remaining days if we had not heard back from Zachary yet. When we did hear back from Zachary it was obvious something more was going on than what we were being led to believe. He would go on to give us a different closing date every other week.
Within each week came a different complication. One week it was him asking for pictures of our signatures so he could go ahead and forge them. Another was him reminding us that he was going out of his way for us, more so than any other bank would be willing to do. Asking for our individual bank account logins and leaving us feeling unease, our lack of knowledge in this process and his persistence made us extremely uncomfortable by this point. He would ask for documents that had already been sent to him more than once, but were somehow misplaced by his people.
It became apparent that this wasn't the same Zachary ** we were presented to nor were his promises going to be met. The level of unprofessionalism displayed. Going on to refer to the seller's attorney as an, "evil **", a ** and constantly trying to sell us on the idea that he was doing my family and I a favor here, as if we weren't rightful clients or even human beings who deserved the respect and fair treatment as many others.
Fed up with this and having already spent a month in many different hotels, we decided enough was enough and it was time to look for another bank to get the job done. The hassle Franklin First Financial and Zachary ** gave us was beyond ridiculous at this point. The real estate company sent one of their realtors to pick up all of our paperwork, an hour drive mind you, only to be told she wouldn't get anything as she wasn't one of the lenders.
The realtor was then presented to someone who presented themselves as the VP and promised that by next day tomorrow they would have word on a closing date and if not we would have to go and personally collect our paperwork. Not surprisingly so the bank, Zachary and this supposed VP came up short. My mother, one of the realtors and I made the trip to Franklin First Financial the very second we were out of work. We were made to wait a few minutes in the lobby, when some guy I had never before seen came out and handed a pile of papers to the realtor accompanying us.
He never asked for any form of identification nor who or where the lenders were. This seemed strange to me seeing as how they gave the realtor a tough time just the day before because she wasn't one of the lenders. Frustrated by the games the bank seemed to be playing with my family, I asked once more to speak with Zachary **. I needed to see his face, to let him know how this had infused with our personal lives, to maybe finally get some answers and to just have this person show their face.
I was told Zachary was busy in meetings and that they didn't know how much longer he would be, they expressed how the bank went out of its way to pay for the last two appraisals and finally reaching my breaking point I told this person that my family had to pay thousands because we were left without a home. Expressing how he wasn't made aware of this he introduced himself to us, Anthony ** and then excused himself to go and see if Zachary could come.
Finally feeling up to showing himself, Zachary, Anthony, the realtor, my mother and myself were escorted into a conference room. The first thing out of this man's mouth was, "How are you?” I had to bite back my laughter at this one, where to even begin and express all that my family had been through.
I broke down in angry and frustrated tears, told them if they knew that my younger brother wouldn't have an elementary school to register to come fall, how I wouldn't be able to reregister to college this coming semester, how my mother was working back to back shifts to make up for the money we're wasting on hotels. Money that had been saved to invest in our dream house, and how that very same house we now run the risk of losing. I asked why, why were we given dates after dates when none of it was ever going to happen.
Why did he make everything sound so easy and laced his words with the most confidence I've heard in single person. Why weren't we told earlier on that they weren't the bank to get this done? Zachary constantly replied with his own mantra of, "Hey, don't shoot the messenger. I'm only the messenger here. I was going by what I was told," he constantly replied remaining me that once again he had done us a favor here and that he gave us his most upright professionalism. EVERYTHING, pouring my heart out to these people and wanting to just have answers went through one ear and out the other.
My mother, whose first language isn't English told Zachary herself that his claims of being professional were laughable at best. She pleaded with him to remember how and with which manner he chose to speak about others with us. When he got loud with my mother, accusing her of threatening him, I turned to Anthony ** and asked since when was it professional to reference people who are working on the same deal as me with such disgusting and degrading names. I mentioned how I still had the text messages in which Zachary called the seller's attorney 'an evil **' and so forth and once again asked Anthony if that was professional?
Anthony himself gave us a clear no. Seeing how this wasn't going to go anywhere we left, Anthony ** giving me the promised to email with the contact information to reach their VP so we could talk about the promised reimbursement for the hotel cost, now as well to see if we could get reimbursed for the first appraisal we paid for. Still waiting on that email, by the way. It is now a few weeks left until August reaches its end and my family and I have still been going through hotels because of Franklin First Financial. Our new bank has been able to get more than in a week than Franklin First Financial and Zachary ** were able to in three months...
Franklin First Financials' complete lack of transparency with their clients is of which to leave a sour taste in one's mouth. With failing to do as their slogan says "Closing loans and building relationships", we did not close our loan. However, they did build a relationship, one that is based on lies and false promises of which they will never fulfill. If you value your time and money, save yourself the heartache and find a different bank. Unfortunately, for us we were not forewarned.
MELVILLE, NEW YORK -- I rarely review any business online. Sometimes when people go out of their way to help you they should be rewarded. I was going through a terrible divorce trying to buy out my EX. Making it more difficult I'm self employed which also makes getting a mortgage difficult. Anthony ** the Manager there help me through the whole process. Meeting late at night or early in the morning. My Ex was able to block my closing twice. His attitude was "Let's roll up our sleeves and start again." If I had gone to a major bank I would have been just a number. He treated me like family at a very difficult time in my life. Please use him, good people should be rewarded.
DELAWARE -- I'd like to tell you my experience with Franklin First Financial. I am going through a divorce because after 21 years of marriage, my husband decided he liked someone else better. My one stipulation for signing the divorce papers was that my husband help to buy a house for me and my children to live in. My husband contacted Franklin First Financial. They gave us the best interest rate. Our loan officer was JB. I believe he is located in Florida. I live in Delaware. We signed Good Faith Estimates, but there were many items left TBD. Some of the items left TBD were transfer taxes and escrow amounts, for example.
Well, the TBD items were never determined by our loan processor. The day before closing, on June 11, 2007, my husband had a verbal conversation with the loan processor trying to determine the exact amount we needed to bring to the closing table. The processor could not determine how much, but said, "Bring either $28,000 or $29,000, that should be about right. If you don't bring enough, you can write a personal check at the table. If it's too much, they can give you a refund at the table." That was a bit stressful because I had exactly $28,800 in my savings account and that was all.
On the morning of closing, June 12, 2007, Franklin First Financial finally got the paperwork to our closing lawyer, Ward and Taylor, at 9:30 am. Mr. Ward was our attorney. Our closing was scheduled for 10 am, but because Franklin First Financial was late, our closing was pushed back. When we finally sat down at the table, Mr. Ward told us that we owed $34,787. Franklin First Financial had never determined the transfer taxes nor the escrow amounts which accounted for the discrepancy.
Mr. Ward excused the sellers and addressed us. He said that in 27 years of closing on real estate, he had never seen a mistake this bad. First, Mr. Ward called the loan processor. She would not acknowledge the mistake, and suggested that Mr. Ward play with the 5% that the realtors had, which, of course, had nothing to do with the problem. Finally, he talked to JB, the loan officer. He offered us $250 rebate, which was our processing fee. We declined and proceeded with the closing.
I then had to borrow about $6,000 from my soon-to-be ex-husband in order to close on my house. I was very angry and humiliated. But that doesn't compare to what happened in the days to follow. The next day, my husband called Mr. B. Mr. B offered to restructure the loan from an 80/10/10 to an 80/15/5. This would initially put about $9,000 back in our pocket, but it would raise my payments by about $100 per month. This was not something I was interested in. As a woman living off of alimony and child support, $100 a month isn't something I can afford.
So, I decided that I wasn't going to go for that deal. I felt that Mr. B had made a $6,000 mistake at my expense because he neglected to pick up the phone and find out how much my transfer taxes would be in the state I live in. He did not do his job, and our lawyer, Mr. Ward, told us that he broke a law known as RESPA. Mr. B was supposed to protect me by giving me an estimate that was very close to what I actually had to pay, not $6,000 off.
So I decided to call Mr. B myself and tell him that I wasn't interested in a "favor" that cost him nothing but cost me $100 a month, especially since it was he that made the mistake. Mr. B hung up on me 3 times. The first time he said, "I've already talked to a lawyer and your husband, I'm not going to talk to a third party about this." The second time I called, he said, "Have your husband call me." The third time, he said, "I will not take your calls." When I called him the fourth time, he finally listened to me.
He heard the whole story as I have just told you (he didn't know my husband and I were divorcing, for example). He blamed the problem on a "young" loan processor. I told him that even a young loan processor has a boss who is responsible for his work. He kept reiterating that he was trying to do me a "favor" by restructuring the loan. I told him that the only favor he could do for me was to reach into his pocket and give me $6,000 because that is what good customer service people do when they've made a mistake.
He told me that I should have called my state to find out my own taxes, and I told him that was his job. At the end of the conversation, I assured him that I would be contacting the Delaware Banking Commission, Lending Tree, and his own general office of Franklin First Financial. At that, he replied, "Fine" and hung up again. I'm sure everyone involved would like to know what kind of service I received from JB at Franklin First Financial.
I was a dissatisfied customer who had been wronged, and Mr. B hung up on me a total of four times after making a $6,000 mistake at my expense. I have a lawyer looking into it for me, so Mr. B may not have heard the last of me. All I have to say is, watch out for Franklin First Financial. They may promise the moon, but they aren't interested in service. They're interested in your money.
WEST HEMPSTEAD, NEW YORK -- On May 15th 2003 a representative from Franklin First Financial came to my home and we discussed a refinance of my mortgage. After discussing loan rates and closing costs I gave him a good faith check in the amount of $305 dollars in case we decided to go ahead with the loan. When he informed me that he couldn't give me the rate we discussed I told him to cancel my application. He said no problem and my papers and check would be returned to me.
I waited for one month and when nothing had been returned to me I called Franklin Financial and was told someone would get right back to me. I waited the entire day and no one called back. The next day I called them again and was assured they would get right back to me. Again no one called all day. My significant other then called and after telling the operator of the difficulty we'd been having reaching someone at Franklin she insisted on talking to a live person right then. She talked to a company representative who promised to return my check and papers within 10 business days. About a week later I received my papers but no check.
We were away for 2 weeks and when we returned she again called on 7/9/03 and was told someone would get right back to her. Again no returned call. On 7/10/03 she called from her job and after hanging on for 10 minutes could hold on no longer. I then called from home and was told by recording someone would get back to me. Once again no returned phone call. I called the next day and insisted on talking to a person.
I was transferred to the Compliance Department and spoke to a man whose name I won't reveal at this time. He verified my check was there and told me I would receive my refund within ten business days. I waited about 20 days and I called the company and asked to talk with the man in Compliance. He came on the line and when I asked him what was going on with my refund he said he was on another line with a customer and would call me back within the hour. I asked him to please call back because no one ever returns calls at Franklin Financial and he assured me he would. I waited the entire day and he never called back.
The following day my significant other called again and demanded to speak to an officer of the company. She was given a man [whose name I will not reveal at this time] who identified himself as the Vice President of the company. He said he would talk to the man in Compliance and get back to her. He did call back and after apologizing for all of our troubles and admitting his employees were negligent he promised my check would be in my mailbox no later then Saturday 8/2/03 or Monday 8/4/03.
When my check had not arrived by 8/5/03 she again called the Vice President's office and left a message for him to call her back that same day. You guessed it, no return call from him either. On 8/7/03 she again called and getting this so called Vice President he assured her the check was going out that day. It is now the morning of 8/11/03 and I still do not have my refund. Folks ,if this is the kind of company that you want to do business with then don't say you weren't forewarned. I'm wondering if they are all just incompetent or could they even be a fraud? This is the worst company I have ever dealt with. Good luck.
SYOSSET, NEW YORK -- I was doing a refinance online and received a phone call from someone at Franklin First his name is Isaak. He promised all kinds of things and did not come through with anything. He said we would close in a week well it took just about 6 weeks. He lied about our appraisal, because he could not get the rate that he promised. We signed closing papers on a Tuesday. Come Monday our loan was still not funded. At that point he stopped returning my phone calls and emails, until it threatened to go to a lawyer.
He then gave me a name and number of the corporate office to call. After speaking to the funding officer come to find out he changed our HUD after it was signed and we were not be reimbursed for our appraisal fee or getting back the 1200.00 that we were supposed to get, it was all going in his pocket. I was going to cancel the deal but this lady assured me she would make things right. Well within the next day the HUD was changed and all of our payoffs were correct. She came through for us. So not everyone at Franklin First is a snake just Isaak.
So if you do business with them just make sure you don't get tangled up with him. If anyone has any questions I kept all of my emails with him, I could back everything up. But again the company themselves are good just not him. Hopefully when they have time to review everything that I have sent them he will be fired.... I did speak to another mortgage company out of MA. it is Northeast Lending the loan officer was David ** and he was excellent. He was honest even though I went with the other company he still answered question for me. So if you need a mortgage try him.