Defeating Scams: Knowing the Signs
Last week, Forbes published an insightful piece cautioning borrowers against the myriad of mortgage and foreclosure rescue scams that continue to plague distressed homeowners who are understandably desperate for a mortgage remedy.
In fact, as the article accurately points out, not only have scams become more prevalent in the housing market, but they are also developing into sophisticated, complex schemes, making it all the more difficult for homeowners to discern between trusted mortgage help and resources and those of a fraudulent nature. Indeed, as previously noted in our “Reservations about Refinancing” blog post, the sheer number of mortgage scams and misconducts has caused many homeowners to shy away from applying to legitimate government-sponsored programs, such as the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) and the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP).
The obstacles confronting struggling homeowners today are without a doubt overwhelming and difficult to navigate – and with a seemingly endless number of scammers implementing a variety of tactics to take advantage of them, the path back to sustainable homeownership can appear all the more convoluted and stressful.
HPF reminds homeowners that one of the most important steps they can take to help protect themselves now and in the future is to learn the warning signs of a scam; staying one step ahead of preying scam artists by knowing what to look for is of increased importance in the evolving mortgage landscape.
So, what are these warning signs – the “red flags” you should avoid? We urge you to find out by visiting the list of scam signs we’ve compiled on our website or by calling our HOPE Hotline at 888-995-HOPE (4673) to speak with a HUD-approved housing counselor for free. It is also worth noting that you can report suspected mortgage fraud to our team of anti-scam scam counselors, who share the information they receive with law enforcement agencies to aid in their investigation into fraudulent organizations.