Well, you didn't technically lose the $36K in equity...you received cash at closing that you agreed to. You can always send that cash back to Countrywide and ask that it be applied toward your principal.
I think I know exactly which program you signed up for, only because I had the same loan on my current house before I refinanced, so I recognized how the statement was set up.
I think you have a first-position Home Equity Line of Credit...these are 100% loans and they are interest only, at prime for the life of the loan, and your payment changes monthly.
Those loans are not designed for long-term lending, they are designed for temporary lending solutions for people who want 100% financing and don't want to put alot of money down, or for people who will be in the house short-term.
It's technically not predatory lending, it's just a bad loan that didn't serve you needs. If you make the minimum payments on it, you'll never put anything toward the principal of your home, and you really need to be looking to make payments on the interest plus the principle figure that is on the statement.
It's not a common loan program, and not very many lenders have it....it's a great program...but not for someone who is staying for a long time in the home.
I am really sorry about that...refinancing, again, is the only way out.
PS: I'm adding this...do see an attorney and take all of your documents that you receive pre- and post-closing. Countrywide is notorious for poorly training their LO's, chances are very good that something wasn't disclosed correctly or in the correct time frame. If it is a 1st position HELOC that you have, and a mistake was made in the documents...your right of recision is 5 YEARS.
see profile...I never sell anything online.