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Geoff Greenwood, Communications Director
515-281-6699, geoff.greenwood@iowa.gov
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, February 9, 2014

Top 2013 Consumer Complaint: Home Mortgages

Top three consumer protection division complaints last year related to mortgages, debt collection & used vehicle sales

(DES MOINES, Iowa) Troubles with home mortgages, debt collection practices and used vehicle sales topped the list of complaints consumers filed last year with the attorney general’s Consumer Protection Division.

“The numbers show that many people who are struggling financially are struggling even more with those who are trying to take advantage of their situations,” Attorney General Tom Miller said.

Out of nearly 3,000 written complaints filed last year, 316 were related to home mortgages, 171 were debt collection complaints, and 169 consumers complained about used vehicle sales practices.

“Home mortgage complaints continue to top the list, but we’re seeing those numbers trending downward, which we think is good news,” Miller said.  Miller noted that the 2012 National Mortgage Settlement with the nation’s largest mortgage servicers put new rules into place that govern how servicers handle mortgages, including how they respond to borrower complaints.

“Our Consumer Protection Division assists thousands of Iowans every year with complaints, advice and inquiries,” Miller said.  “Iowans who think they’ve been cheated or scammed should contact our office.”

Consumers with questions or complaints can contact the Consumer Protection Division through the Attorney General’s website, by email or by phone:

Website:   www.IowaAttorneyGeneral.gov
Email:        consumer@iowa.gov
Phone:      515-281-5926 (outside the Des Moines area, call toll-free: 1-888-777-4590)

2013 TOP TEN CONSUMER PROTECTION DIVISION (CPD) COMPLAINTS

Category                                                   2013 Complaints     2012 Complaints        % Change

1. Home mortgage

316

460

-31%

2. Debt collection

171

270

-37%

3. Used vehicle sales practices

169

180

-6%

4. Cell phones

156

121

+29%

5. Vehicle credit

142

101

+41%

6. Magazine & newspaper subscriptions

116

150

-23%

7. Business promotional ad sales

113

114

-1%

8. Home improvements

83

131

-37%

9. Foreclosure rescue scams

75

73

+3%

10. Satellite TV

70

104

-33%

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