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My online mortgage refi in Oklahoma proceeds in Iowa

This Edmond homeowner discovers the digital world has changed the steps for refinancing a mortgage.
by Richard Mize Published: December 15, 2012

— Here we go. The mortgage refi I “accidentally” started last month is inching along — “accidentally” because I actually didn't realize until I was into it that it would be done mostly by email, fax and phone call.

Silly me and my pre-Internet ways: When I inquired about a refi by phone while making a house payment, I thought Wells Fargo Home Mortgage would refer me to a local guy. (Apologies again, John S.) Nope: Geoff M., the Wells Fargo rep on the phone, in San Francisco, just got the ball rolling.

That was early November. By mid-November, applications and a short stack of other documents also had been to'd and fro'd between Wells Fargo somewhere and my mailbox in Edmond. This week, Wells Fargo's John C. called from Des Moines, Iowa, with a few questions.

Could I get him W2 forms for 2010 and 2011? And my most recent pay stub? And a copy of my Student Loan Obligation Statement, which shows how much I woe and when the payments start? (“Woe” was a typo, but I'm leaving it; it fits.)

“Why, sure,” I said. “Tell me an address and I'll get 'em in the mail.”

Whereupon I swear John C. stifled a snort.

He got it back together quickly and responded that, of course, considering the “urgency” of the loan process, etc., etc., I might want to take care of it digitally.

Whereupon I muttered something about not being sure how to use the fax machine at work — so he asked if there wasn't a Wells Fargo branch close by, because I could have someone there fax the stuff to him.

And that strained my '80s brain because I am imagining it taking more time than I can find to get copies of the W2s, and the student loan document — paper copies in my hands — then find a Wells Fargo branch, and drive to it and, and, and I started to get hives. And I muttered something further about how I've needed to upgrade my iPhone — and can do so for a few bucks — for weeks now and can't seem to make time to get to the AT&T store, which is 0.4 mile from my house.

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by Richard Mize
Real Estate Editor
Real estate editor Richard Mize has edited The Oklahoman's weekly residential real estate section and covered housing, commercial real estate, construction, development, finance and related business since 1999. From 1989 to 1999, he worked...
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