Scammers can get crafty.
The unscrupulous people who design schemes that scam homeowners approaching foreclosure don’t need high-tech resources. Mortgage modification scammers find their prey by looking at foreclosure notices on the Internet, in local periodicals and public files.
VA home loans have the lowest default rate on the market. But military homeowners aren’t immune to default. Here’ a look at some of the ways to spot mortgage modification scams:
The company that services your VA loan is the only party that can grant loan modifications. Be wary of any guarantees regarding a modification application.
Be skeptical of anybody who offers you money back. Scammers may make that promise at the outset and tell you the money’s returned once they’re finished assisting you.
Paying in advance
If anyone asks for payment before they carry out a mortgage modification service, then forget it. Charging customers prior to completing mortgage modifications is often illegal.
Don’t listen to people who claim to be mortgage modification experts and tell you to stop paying your mortgage every month. Similarly, it’s a red flag if they tell you not to talk to your mortgage servicer about an offer.
Posing as the government
Through emails or any other communication, scammers will use fake government logos or claim to be affiliated with the U.S. government. Look into deceptive advertising with tools from MakingHomeAffordable.gov.
Signing the deed
Unless you’re working with your mortgage servicer, don’t mess with the deed to your property. Never sign the deed over to a person or company.
As soon you get pressured by somebody to sign paperwork or transfer the deed, you should recognize it’s a scam. Scammers may even promise to save your home once you sign the deed over.
Pay only your mortgage servicer each month. Ignore companies or individuals who tell you it’s OK to make a payment with them.
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