The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has fielded more than 19,000 consumer complaints about mortgage lenders and servicers with roughly 600 participants receiving some type of monetary relief.
“The median amount of monetary relief reported was approximately $410 for the 600 mortgage complaints,” the bureau said in releasing the first “snapshot” of complaints it collects from consumers.
Bureau officials also noted that some consumers received other forms of relief, such as completing a loan modification or short sale.
CFPB director Richard Cordray stressed that consumer complaints provide “very valuable” information that help guide the bureau’s activities in terms of supervisory exams, enforcement actions and rulemaking.
“Indeed, Congress authorized us to develop our priorities out of this data, which reinforces its potential value to the broader public,” Cordray told reporters during a briefing on Monday.
The bureau’s Consumer Complaint Database started fielding complaints about credit cards first and it is planning to make some of those pleadings public.
The CCD was expanded in December 2011 to collect mortgage complaints. The bureau is now seeking comment on making complaints about residential lenders and servicers available to the public at large.
Upon receiving a consumer complaint, agency officials verify that the company has a relationship with the consumer before uploading the complaint and identifying the company on the database.
The complainant’s identity is not disclosed — just the person’s ZIP code.
The database includes information about the complaint, the company’s response time, how the company responded and whether the consumer disputed the company’s response.
The bureau said it “prioritizes for review and investigation complaints in which the consumer disputes the response or where the companies fail to provide a timely response.”