20 Jun Foreclosure Scams Are on the Rise: Several Tips to Avoid Them
There has been no shortage of foreclosures on the market over the past several years, so it’s no surprise that unscrupulous individuals are finding ways to intervene in these transactions and ultimately take advantage of homeowners. As such, the Federal Government recently released a list of tips for homeowners to help them avoid being taken advantage of by foreclosure scam artists.
Tip #1 – Work only with a HUD approved counselor
If a homeowner is being foreclosed upon, the federal government recommends working only with their recommended counselors. These counselors have been assessed and approved to handle foreclosures and have been deemed credible.
Tip #2 – Don’t overpay for services
Most HUD sponsored foreclosure counselors offer free or very low cost services. Homeowners should never be lured into spending excessive amounts of money on foreclosure counseling. Individuals requesting such high fees can often be a red flag for scams.
Tip #3 – Be cautious of guarantees
A reputable foreclosure counselor will not promise the homeowner that the foreclosure will be stopped for them. Specific circumstances ultimately determine the fate of a foreclosure, and, therefore, anyone who makes guarantees should not be trusted.
Tip #4 – Know what is being signed
Homeowners should never allow a counselor to fill out or sign paperwork on their behalf, and unfortunately this happens more frequently than many people realize. Clients get pressured and overwhelmed and suddenly they have signed their home away.
Tip #5 – Unbelievable deal? It probably is.
As the old adage states, if it’s too good to be true, it probably is. If a homebuyer encounters an amazing solution from a supposed foreclosure counselor, and it sounds like too great of a deal to be true, it probably is. Be wary of “perfect solutions,” as they generally do not exist.