Mwaslh - my story is pretty much a mirror of yours. Friday I received notification 9 days after they cut my HELOC from $87,000 to $27,500.
They are telling us the value of our home has dropped over $100,000 in the past year.
They list balance due on the primary mortgage as the exact same amount when we took out the HELOC 14 months ago (did they think we were not making any payments?). In reality we've been pre-paying the primary and it's over $15,000 lower than they show.
The town we live in just sent us our re-assesement on property taxes, raising the evaluation substantially based on the almost $80,000 in renovations we've just completed. The bulk of that was paid in cash. Only $26,000 on the HELOC.
In speaking with their loan department they have admitted that if they had the correct information on the balance due on the primary mortgage they would not have dropped the HELOC amount. I was told to fax over proof of the primary mortgage balance due and they would reinstate the HELOC in 5 - 15 days. Now it's a waiting game. I escalated this to the Chase Executive office and got pretty much the same run-around. They would send an e-mail to the loan executive offices and I would hear from them within 10 days.
Their actions hung me out to dry with my contractor to whom I'd written a check for some additional exterior work he'd just completed. Fortunately he's a friend and is understanding of the situation while I get this straightened out. In trying to come to a quick solution to cover his check I got nothing but inexcusably lame responses from Chase. With a difference of only $1750 between my remaining HELOC available balance and the amount I owed my contractor, I requested a small bump in the limit given the information I'd faxed over. Was told they had no ability to do that so I asked if I transferred that amount from my Chase checking to my HELOC as a payment would it immediately increase my available balance so the check would clear. I was astounded when they told me the could not guarantee that and that they may put a hold on those funds for UP TO 12 DAYS!!! Cash from their bank to their HELOC and they hold the funds! They basically told me to pull the remaining money from my HELOC and write him another check from my personal account. Not a good solution considering it was a weekend and I couldn't reach him to find out if he had already deposited the check.
Only phrase most of the "customer service" reps know are: "I''m very sorry", "I can't gurantee that", and "you have to understand that they are VERY busy". That last one really angered me. I reminded the CS rep of the bailout money, high unemployment and suggested in no uncertain terms that they go out and stimulate the economy by hiring some people to do the job that they clearly were unable to handle with their current staff.
At this point I just want to get at least a portion of the HELOC reinstated ASAP to finish up a few final loose ends on the renovations. I will then be taking steps to close Chase accounts and take my banking elsewhere. Like you, we have high credit scores, no debt beyond the mortgage, HELOC and regular monthy bills, and we have secure jobs with good income. Chase clearly does not want the good customers that are responsible in paying their bills. It's time to look elsewhere.
Thanks for your detailed postings - it helps to know I'm not alone in this travesty of abuse. I will post updates on my situation with them and may be interested in joining the class action suit as well.