I have six children. I love my children very much. I work a lot of long, hard hours to provide for them. Unfortunately, most of the time, we just make ends meet. I have to work even harder to be able to save up for Christmas.

Our Christmas is typically humble compared to most other families. Our children get 1-2 small gifts each and that is it. I don’t buy for anyone else. I cannot and will not try and justify spending money on other people when I have to keep the heat on and the mortgage paid.

It is, in fact, the mortgage company, Bank of America that stole our family’s Christmas two years in a row. I made my payments faithfully. In fact, they came out of my account auto-“magically”. Paying the mortgage was then one less thing I had to worry about.

Everything seemed to be working fine until June of 2012. It was then that I got a notice from Bank of America that I did not have insurance on my home. Funny, to me, since I paid that auto-“magically” as well. Each and every month Allstate took money out of my account as well. For clarification, I did NOT have my home in escrow, never had. This letter began a long and drawn out process of calling both my insurance company and BOA again and again (and often on a conference call). After over 12 hours of my life was wasted, they seemed to have had the issue straightened out.

The problem had occurred because some five years prior, our county had changed our (and everyone else’s) 911 address in a remapping effort. This had actually occurred while our mortgage was owned by Countrywide and had been changed (or so it seemed) with no issues. Now, all of these years later, BOA wants us to again prove that our house had not sprouted legs, walked to another piece of property and planted itself there. The paperwork for this was of course, long gone.

The mortgage statement began coming to the correct address and it seemed that the issue was in fact resolved until November 2012 when over $300 came out of my account like magic that was NOT authorized and should NOT have been touched.

More long hours on the phone with BOA yielded what was supposed to be a refund check mailed overnight to my home. The check never arrived. For weeks, they could not prove to me where my Christmas funds had gone.

The next year, the horror story started ALL OVER AGAIN! BOA still could not get our address correct in their system. Finally, after wasting numerous hours arguing with their customer service and repeating the same story to one “customer service” rep after another, we finally received a legal document of over 50 pages in length that had to be notarized numerous times just to prove our house was still in the same spot and only our address was changed. Finally, they had our physical address, mailing address, and the address on the insurance all matched. Or so it seemed.

Then, in November 2013, my Christmas funds again disappeared from my account. Even though we had proved that we had insurance, got the addresses to all match, and had all of those pages of documents notarized and sent back months before, BOA still decided to take out Hazard Insurance (at an outrageous rate no less) in our name and send us the bill.

It again took weeks to seemingly get the issue straightened out once more. Or should I say 3 years? For 3 years, there was still a balance on our escrow account because someone at BOA does not understand dates and how they work or so it would seem since they tried to claim that we had had a lapse in our insurance which had never occurred.

In the end, BOA credited the first payment (the one that was to be sent over night) to our principle – weeks later. And they finally sent us a check for the mess up the second year – in part and then the remainder 3 years later. Of course, they did nothing to credit us with the interest that should have been taken off had the money been applied when they stole it from us. If you are looking for a mortgage company, do NOT look to Bank of America. Run! Run the other way! There are other mortgage companies out there. There are more honest companies out there. There are companies out there with better service that actually treat you like a customer. Don’t let Bank of America steal your family’s Christmas, too.