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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

A cranky rant

In the last two months I have heard the above quote about 73 times.  Why?  I am in the process of going through mortgage approval.

In 1971 I applied for my first mortgage.  I believe I was required to supply identification, my SS number, a W2 proof of income from the prior year, and a current pay stub.  I got the mortgage in a week.

I made squadoodle a year, and had been working for only two years, but I had 20% to put down, I had identification, a SS number, a W2 and a pay stub…done deal.

Currently I have to prove who I am with a copy of a driver’s license, and a copy of my SS card.

I had to show proof that I have health insurance. 

I had to show two years of tax returns with all W2’s and 1099’s and whatever else I never see because my accountant, who is currently facing jail time for embezzlement, submits every year.

I have three brokerage accounts and they required the last two month’s statements and activity for all the accounts.

I claimed my SS income on my tax returns and had the appropriate tax information for that income, but they also wanted proof from SS Office that I was entitled to the income I was claiming.

The driver’s license was easy, take a picture and text it over, but why is that needed to prove who I am?  How do I have brokerage accounts and a SS# if I am not who I say I am? Is that all stolen identity, and if it is couldn’t I fake a driver’s license?

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

 I haven’t had or needed a SS card for over 35 years.  The original was cheap paper and it simply dissolved.  I did not need the card to claim and collect my social security money, but the bank required it.

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

“If I have a W2 from SS showing what they sent me, and I claim that amount on my taxes, why do I need a letter from SS saying that I am entitled to the mount they send me?”

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

“I sent you proof of the balance in my brokerage accounts, why do you need two months of all activity in those accounts?  Isn’t that a little intrusive?”

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

OK, I provided all that information and more.  Mrs. C is not involved in the application, but she had to provide and sigh stuff for some reason that did not make any sense and there was other stuff that I can’t even remember.

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

Today I was informed that everything was approved, they just needed three more little things.

One of the brokerage accounts is a joint account.  They required a letter from Mrs. Cranky that verifies that I am allowed to access the joint account.

“It is a JOINT ACCOUNT!!  Why wouldn’t I be allowed to access a joint account with my name on it?”

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

Then they wanted me to show where I received my monthly SS check.

“It goes directly to my Blah Blah Blah checking account.”

“Well we need two month’s statements showing all activity in that account and the SS deposit.”

“I need to prove that the SS money I declare on my taxes and that I show a W2 form and that SS has sent a letter confirming I am entitled to the money I declare…you want me to prove that I do in fact receive that money?”

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

“Oh, and we also need you to prove that you are taking the required distributions from your 401K account as you are over 70 years old.”

“I need to prove that I am not breaking the law?”

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law”

“Tell you what, you have on my tax returns the income I declare from my 401K, and you have two month’s activity showing distributions from that account to my other account.  You know my 401k balance.  You have all the information you need to determine what I am required to take out and what I am taking out.  You do the math.”

“We’ll get back to you.”

All this is just for a simple mortgage that with computers should have been approved in maybe an hour.  I can only imagine what is required of any business small or large to get a loan, build a plant, pay taxes, hire an employee, prove expenses, get a license, prove product safety, and on and on and on.

I understand the need for regulations, but when you question a requirement and the answer you get from every level is,

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is required by Law.”

Maybe, just maybe, if everyone from the lowest clerical level all the way up to Congress and the Senate knows it is clearly RIDICULOUS, someone with a brain ought to be able to simplify and or change the law!

“I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but…”


  1. It's how they justify the necessity for all the extra bureaucracy.
    It isn't necessary but it's required

  2. One more reason to never try for a mortgage, with my first reason being I have no money.
    All those extra rubber stampers and paper shufflers have to get paid somehow, so they probably bill you per document.

  3. We "killed" several trees with all we had to provide for getting our mortgage on the house we purchased back in March, and we were "pre approved" over the phone. So how could we go from pre approved to suddenly needing tons of paperwork to justify we could qualify for a mortgage?


  4. When I worked in the mtg industry we gathered as much of the info for our client as we were able so that all they had to do was show up to the closing. People are just lazy. They can get that info themselves. They choose not to.

  5. I think I'll stay where I am in case the UK have adopted the same ridiculous policies. My brain couldn't cope with all that.

  6. This is why i hope to just pay off the mortgage we have and never, ever get another. And you've given me an idea of something to write about on Saturday.

  7. You just sold me on staying put right here and remaining mortgage less. Sheesh.

  8. What a nightmare. And I can't imagine what your health insurance has to do with a mortgage?

    What pisses me off the most about this whole scenario is that your personal info is being circulated God knows where in order for one of these institutions to eventually be hacked.

  9. The red tape can drown the average person. And it does so very often.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

  10. Loved the Freudian Slip in "...Mrs. C is not involved in the application, but she had to provide and sigh stuff for some reason that did not make any sense ..." Sigh, Indeed!

  11. Replies
    1. Sadly, no...I'm waiting on my kids for that, maybe a daughter?

  12. Try applying for a liquor license. I seriously doubt that anyone down at the town hall is actually going to read through three years worth of bank statement for 4 businesses, plus three years of personal and corporate tax returns.

  13. My mortgage experiences are ages old, but you reminded me of a few of them. In or around 1971, also the year of our first purchase, my salary as a teacher only counted as 1/2 our qualifying income. This was "just in case," as a woman, I decided to go off and get pregnant and quit my job as soon as the ink was dry!
    We built our current home in 1985. We had just filed income tax, desperate to "look poor." The builder asked for a financial statement, requiring us, all of a sudden, to "look rich!"

  14. Thank God our house is free & clear!!

  15. I think I have almost the exact opposite experience. When my husband and I bought our first home together in 1989, we jumped through a ton of hoops, showed proof of our five incomes (yes, between the two of us, we had four jobs plus I received child support from my ex) and still my father-in-law ended up having to co-sign. When we moved to Florida in 2007 and bought a house, the banker wasn't even interested in seeing our pay stubs. I think we could have done the entire transaction over the phone.

    I wonder if the experience you had was a direct result from the times when anybody with a pulse could get a mortgage, which of course, let to the mortgage/banking crisis. Nothing like over-reacting.

  16. When my old house falls down around my ears, you just convinced me to get an RV. that's got to be easier than a mortgage.

  17. I don't remember having to go through all that when I bought my $17,000 house in town...

  18. Pixel Peeper is right....this is all due to the extremely lax (fraudulent) banking standards back in the pre-2008 years that almost caused the world-wide economic meltdown. Now the pendulum is swinging WAY too far in the other direction.

  19. Well, ya know, those same government entities are now considering telling Northern Alaskans that they're not allowed to burn wood for heat ......

    “I’m Sorry, I know It is Ridiculous, but it is prohibited by Law” Maybe you can cuddle with your dog sled team?


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