Complaint / review text:
Advantage Florida Mortgage - Douglas Hernberg - Predatory Lender. I was relocating to Florida from Ohio. I found a house and needed to close on the house quickly (less than three weeks) as the movers would have my things in Florida in less than three weeks. I found Advantage Florida Mortgage via an internet search.
Advantage Florida Mortgage had great rates, so I called and spoke to Doug Hernberg. Doug ensured me that he could close the loan in less than three weeks. I asked about his fees other "closing" related costs and he indicated that he charged the same as most banks. Due to the excellent interest rate, I asked Doug if I were going to be purchasing any "points" or buying down the interest rate. He indicated absolutely not.
After speaking to my realtor and some friends, I was a little nervous about using an online mortgage broker... And realized that I never received a good faith estimate from Doug (all other brokers and banks offered the good faith estimate when I contacted them for an estimate). Doug emailed me "shody" document that confirmed what he had told me... I was not buying down the interest rate nor paying any excessive brokerage fees.
I felt much better, but was still reserved that Doug would be able to close the loan in time. I was to close on Sept 10,2004 (a Friday). I made the mistake of telling Doug that the movers would not be delivering my household goods until the following Thursday. Guess what... Doug postponed the closing every day until the day prior to the movers arriving at my house.
On the day of closing, I contacted Doug to get the final closing costs or at least a final estimate of his portion of my closing costs and he told me that he didn't have those numbers and that I needed to contact the closing agent. As my wife and I were driving to the closing I decided to call the lender (not the mortgage broker-Doug) to see if they would give me Doug's closing costs... My worst nightmare came true. I was being charged $3K more in closing costs than Doug had originally quoted me. When called Doug @ Advantage Florida Mortgage, he would even talk to me about the fees... He said that he needed a copy of the HUD One statement, as someone probably made a mistake. There was no mistake... I had just been scammed!!!
I was in a bind as the movers were going to be at "my" new house in less than 16 hours. I decided that I was not going to be scammed, and stopped the closing... I rolled the dice and had hoped that the seller would allow my family to move in prior to us closing on the house. Thankfully, the seller understood the unfortunate circumstances and allowed us to move in. We found a local lender that closed for us less than two days later.
To add insult to injury, Doug Hernberg called me to ask why I didn't close on the house... Amazing!!! I let him know that I was not going to be hurt by his scam. He then got irate and had the nerve to tell me that we had a contract and that I would still have to pay all the money, regardless of purchasing the house through him. He said that he was sending the money to collections the next day so that we wouldn't be able to get the house due to our credit being ruined... And that we'd have to hire an attorney, etc... That it could cost us thousands of dollars more. This guy was truly amazing... He actually tried flipping his scam on me, as though I was the one breaking a contract.
It has been a couple weeks, I haven't heard anything from Doug Hernberg with Advantage Florida Mortgage, and I've just begun my pursuit to have his broker license revoked. My new mission in life... No Person will be scammed by Doug Hernberg again.