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Avoiding Mortgage Rescue Scams

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One of the unfortunate realities of our current economic condition is the fact that it lends itself well to con artists who are looking to take advantage of innocent people who are in desperate times.

One of the unfortunate realities of our current economic condition is the fact that it lends itself well to con artists who are looking to take advantage of innocent people who are in desperate times. The reality is that con artists prey upon people who have fallen upon hard times, such as those who are having difficulty keeping up with their mortgage payments. As a result, the number of mortgage scams has seen a significant rise over the past several months. Therefore, in order to keep yourself protected, it is essential for you to be aware of these scams and how to recognize a con artist when you see one.

Recognizing a Scam

Sadly, recognizing a scam or a con artist can be quite difficult, as con artists are very good at what they do. By manipulating your feelings and your desperate situation, they can even get you to do things that you know in your heart simply don't seem "right." To that end, here are some general things you should always avoid doing in order to prevent being taken by a con artist:

Never pay upfront fees to a person claiming to be a mortgage rescue advisor
Never sign a contract related to your mortgage without first consulting with a legal professional
Never trust someone who claims to be able to provide you with a "quick fix" to your mortgage problem
Never send mortgage payments to anyone other than the company that is directly responsible for collecting your payments on behalf of your mortgage lender

No matter what type of identification the person shows to you, you should never pay any upfront fees to have your mortgage "fixed." Unfortunately, it is not unusual for con artists to pose as if they are government officials and they may have some convincing looking documentation to back up this claim.

Examining Common Scams

Although the con artists seem to have an unlimited array of scams to select from, there are a few common scams that are being seen within the mortgage industry.

One of the most common scam is the "mortgage rescue" contract. With this scam, the con artist will ask you to sign a contract that will allow him or her to take the steps necessary to help you with your mortgage problems. Rather than signing over permission to give you help, however, you will actually be signing permission for your title to be transferred. Once you have transferred the title to the scammer, he or she will promptly evict you from your home.

A similar scam that is causing people to lose their homes is the "rent-to-buy" scam. With this one, the con artist convinces you to sign over the title of your home so he or she can get it refinanced under better terms that what you can qualify to obtain. The scammer claims that he or she will arrange a rent-to-buy arrangement with you so you can remain in your home. Of course, after ownership is transferred, the con artist finds a reason to evict you from your own home.

The bottom line is that there is no quick fix to mortgage troubles and no one can offer you a "guaranteed" or "proven" solution. Although it may be tempting to take these scammers up on their offers in the hope of saving your home, steer clear of these individuals or you may soon find yourself without a home. Rather, contact reputable organization by visiting MakingHomeAffordable.gov or HopeNow.com, or call 1-888-995-HOPE for legitimate assistance.

Jim Olenbush is a Realtor working in the Austin luxury real estate industry, and he owns Cantera Real Estate. He recently added a new Austin TX Mortgage department to his real estate brokerage.
Article Source: www.homehighlight.org
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