Ameriquest Essay Example
Ameriquest Essay Example

Ameriquest Essay Example

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  • Pages: 6 (1450 words)
  • Published: September 28, 2017
  • Type: Paper
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Can Ameriquest really be considered socially responsible when so many consumers and former employees tell nightmarish stories of deception? This private sub-prime mortgage lender touts itself as “the proud sponsor of the American Dream,” but its reputation is questionable at best.

Ameriquest, a prominent sub-prime lender in the US, has gone through significant changes since its establishment as Long Beach Savings and Loan in 1979. After relocating to Orange County in 1991, the company shifted gears to become a mortgage lender and was eventually renamed Long Beach Mortgage Company in 1994. In 1997, Ameriquest split from the retail portion of the business. Despite these transformations, Ameriquest has faced numerous challenges including major lawsuits and scrutiny over questionable practices. The company has also had to make adjustments to lending guidelines. Recently, Ameriquest made headlines for restructuring its workforce which


resulted in around 9,000 layoffs.

ACC may be cutting 3,000 jobs due to allegations of predatory lending practices and customer deception at Ameriquest. Ameriquest has faced many complaints and was required to pay a settlement of $325 million and implement new “best practices” after being accused of fraud and misleading customers by state prosecutors and lending regulators in 49 states and the District of Columbia. This settlement is the second largest consumer protection settlement in U.S. history, following the $484 million predatory lending agreement made with Household Finance Corp in 2002, as reported by The Washington Post.

According to Downey, Ameriquest is a well-known non-prime lender that upholds the values of assisting groups, specifically those with imperfect credit, minorities, and borrowers with lower income, achieve the American Dream of owning a home. However, despite their supposed good intentions, numerous American

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families feel that Ameriquest has conducted predatory actions instead of aiding them. With just a quick search on Google, multiple consumer complaints on platforms such as and can be found, along with articles that report alleged predatory lending practices and employee grievances regarding the large corporation.

According to one of the stories on, Tony from Stanwood, WA accuses Ameriquest of various offenses including false promises, hidden fees, misquoting the rate for his adjustable rate mortgage, intentionally delaying payments to make them late, and charging late fees on payments that were on time. Tony's negative experience with Ameriquest has left him feeling betrayed and cheated.

Although Ameriquest has received complaints from both consumers and employees, the company continues to be appealing to workers because of its competitive salary and benefits package. Nevertheless, some employees have reported that they are pressured to engage in illicit activities and fraudulent behavior, as well as work long hours in a stressful setting. Despite potential penalties, certain consumers are resolute about refinancing with another company so as to evade Ameriquest's methods. (source:

A class action lawsuit against Ameriquest has been instituted, alleging that its loan officers were not fairly compensated for overtime pay and resulting in numerous complaints about deception (Bergquist). The immense demands placed on loan officers may be the reason behind this. Ex-employees Mark Bomchill and Lisa Taylor recounted how they were pressured to enhance loan volume at all costs. “The situation was so terrible that I had to handle 10 to 15 loans each month,” says Bomchill, who works as a loan consultant for All State Residential Mortgage in Plymouth, Minn. “And there were individuals in my

office who were doing two to three times what I did.

The loan's suitability for both the customer and the lender was never questioned, as the focus was on completing the deal and moving on to the next. Despite closing more than 80 loans a month during his one-year tenure at Ameriquest, Bomchill and his colleagues were unable to satisfy upper management's demands for higher volume.

According to him, his boss was an oppressive figure who would continuously shout and demand them to increase their calls and solicitations for more people. He compares the atmosphere in the branch to the movie Boiler Room from Hollywood.

According to Lisa Taylor, a former Ameriquest loan agent, the atmosphere in her workplace resembled that of the movie Boiler Room, with a manager even using it as a teaching model. The emphasis on obtaining deals at any cost led to abusive behaviors, including using a Coca-Cola vending machine as a tracing board to copy borrowers' signatures onto blank documents.

Chris Arnold, reporting for NPR News, reveals that former Ameriquest employees allege the company instructed them to hide interest rates and fabricate fixed-loan paperwork, ultimately pushing customers into unmanageable loans. These deceitful practices by a major mortgage lender like Ameriquest have widespread consequences not only for clients and staff but also for the economy at large. Experts predict a surge in foreclosures, with potentially predatory outcomes. Some analysts suggest this is just the beginning and we are yet to witness the complete implications of increasing subprime loan defaults on the economy.

Michelle Norris spoke to Professor Cathy Lesser Mansfield from Drake University Law School about her research on default and foreclosure rates in

the subprime mortgage industry. Mansfield predicts that these rates will continue to rise, causing a ripple effect on home values in affected areas and impacting families’ ability to cover basic needs. Meanwhile, Jack Speer of NPR News reports that various measures are being taken to prevent a surge in home foreclosures resulting from issues in the mortgage market. Along with legislative solutions, non-profit organizations and smaller lenders are also working to aid borrowers.

(Speer) Despite numerous reports detailing the negative impact of Ameriquest's practices, the company still makes significant efforts to support the communities it serves. Ameriquest has made substantial contributions to charities that benefit children, as well as being a strong advocate for financial education. In fact, Ameriquest has created several innovative programs - like the Create Your Legacy Program, Dream saver, and S.A.F.E. - to give back to society.

Ameriquest has made significant contributions to various programs, including the Affordable Homeownership Program and support for Hurricane Katrina victims through the Gulf Coast Rebuilding Fund. The company's employees have also been actively involved in building homes and playgrounds nationwide, partnering with organizations like Habitat for Humanity and Kaboom through the league of volunteers program. Owner Roland Arnall is recognized as a philanthropist and prominent political donor, and has recently been appointed as Ambassador to the Netherlands. (source:

Despite prioritizing charity, Ameriquest's actions have ultimately resulted in harm to consumers, employees, and the economy. In order to become a socially responsible company, a change in company culture and strong customer relationship management program are necessary. Although Best Practices were implemented after the Jan 2006 lawsuit, true change in the company philosophy requires a shift in

action rather than just words.

The company motto of "Do the Right Thing" and "Continuous Improvement" must be actualized in practice rather than remaining mere slogans.

The source material is the Wikipedia article "Ameriquest Mortgage," which is overseen by the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. The page was last modified on April 2007 at 21:40 UTC and can be found at It was accessed on May 22, 2007.

Chris Arnold reported on the experience of former Ameriquest employees regarding deception, with the source being the Ameriquest Mortgage Wikipedia page at org/w/index.php?title=Ameriquest_Mortgage&oldid=121055539>.

The source of the information is, and it was published on May 14, 2007. The authors of the article are Larry Barrett and David Carr, and it was originally titled "Ameriquest Mortgage: Risky Business, Risky Practices." It was published in Baseline on September 9, 2005, and accessed on May 19, 2007 through http://www.

Retrieved from,1217,a=159568,00.asp. Bergquist, Erick.

"Suits filed by loan officers to receive overtime pay are reported in American Banker 171.16 (2006): 3, found within the Business Source Premier database on May 2, 2007 via search."

The website shares an article by Kristin Downey from The Washington Post dated January 24, 2006. The article reports on a mortgage lender who settled a lawsuit. The source was accessed on May 19, 2007 from the path C:Documents and SettingsOwnerMy DocumentsMortgage Lender Settles Lawsuit - washingtonpost_com. mht.

The National Mortgage News reported that ACC would be cutting 3,000 jobs. This information was published in the Business Source Premier on May 22, 2007. The source of the information is the article titled "JOB CUTS TOTALING 3,000 AT ACC?" and can be found on page 2-2. The original text is enclosed



The article "Foreclosures May Weaken Home Prices, Spending" by Michelle Norris from NPR can be found at

The organization's article was published on April 10, 2007 and can still be accessed through the following website: content within the is a link to a PHP story with the ID number 9501422.

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