Scam artists masquerading as “foreclosure avoidance specialists” view seniors as especially vulnerable when their mortgage is in default. They use slick language and often falsely present themselves as non-profit organizations or charities who are only interested in saving your home from foreclosure. They expertly confuse people with fast talk and circular logic, offering foreclosure avoidance solutions that are simply too good to be true, such as the ability to remove mortgages entirely without any payment. California homeowners need to be aware of the most prevalent scams currently being perpetrated in our communities, including:
FAKE $10,000 CHECK FRAUD
The most prevalent foreclosure scam right now involves a fake $10,000 “check” being sent to homeowners. This scam requires the homeowner to call to “ACTIVATE” the check. DO NOT CALL THE NUMBER. The schemers behind this ploy have no intention of helping you save your home. They are usually teams of attorneys and real estate agents trying to list, sell and flip your home. This is unethical and potentially illegal.
PHONY NON-PROFITS AND “FOOD DONATION” SCAMS
There are a number of companies claiming to be non-profits offering help if you simply donate “two bags of canned food for the veterans.” These companies have no source of outside funding, and they are not sponsored by the government. In reality, they are run by mortgage brokers, realtors and real estate investors. Be careful of any foreclosure avoidance company that claims to be a benevolent “non-profit” operation or uses a “.org” website. Call us to verify their status.
LOAN MOD/UP-FRONT FEES
It is illegal for anyone, including lawyers, to charge up-front or monthly fees for loan modification services. California banned up-front fees because loan mod companies and attorneys were stealing money from unsuspecting homeowners and doing little or no work at all. Taking money up front or on a monthly basis for loan mod services is illegal and is a sure sign of fraud.
SHORT SALE “EXPERTS”
Real estate agents are being “certified” as short sale experts (e.g., “CDPE” and “SFR”) simply by taking a weekend course or by watching on-line videos. Short sales are full of legal and tax issues that only an Attorney/Realtor® can analyze and address. The short sale expert “certifications” are an advertising ploy to help real estate agents fool homeowners.
SCAMMERS “TEAMING UP” WITH LAWYERS OR LAW FIRMS
This scam is very prevalent because most homeowners understand the need for legal representation but cannot afford the fees. Therefore, loan mod companies, real estate agents and others are now claiming to be “affiliated” with a law firm or they claim to have attorneys “on staff” to help the homeowner. This type of arrangement is UNETHICAL AND ILLEGAL. With Lawyers Realty Group you are directly represented by an Attorney who is also a licensed Realtor®: A true legal expert representing your interests exclusively.
LOAN AUDITS/“MASS JOINDER”
Securitization audits, forensic loan audits, class actions and mass joinder claims are PROVEN SWINDLES and have landed a number ofattorneys IN JAIL. Search for “loan audit” or “mass joinder” on theAttorney General’s website at www.oag.ca.gov.
MERS/PRODUCE THE NOTE
The Internet is full of lore about someone getting their home free and clear of the mortgage because the bank couldn’t produce the note or because MERS was involved. This is an absolute, 100% losing argument in California. Visit our website and search for MERS to see all the losing cases.
INVESTORS, RENT-BACK SCHEMES AND FLIPPERS
There is a flood of “all cash buyers” knocking on doors and leaving hand-written notes saying that they want to buy the home. This is just one of many “quick turn” or “flipping” schemes prevalent in the distressed market. These investors are coming up with multiple pleas and pitches to ensnare homeowners. Please visit our website and search for “Consumer Warnings” to find out the specifics and complexities of these scams.
Work with an Attorney/Realtor
Fraud and shady dealings are rampant in California’s mortgage industry. Make sure anyone you talk to is not only licensed, but truly understands how to apply the full force of California law on your behalf to protect you from foreclosure and help you regain your financial footing. It is in your best interest to use an Attorney/Realtor in any situation where a foreclosure has been commenced or any time you are dealing with a difficult real estate or mortgage issue. We offer free legal advice to California homeowners facing foreclosure. Call today for a free, no-obligation consultation.
CTA/free consultation – (949) 264-0966 – https://www.lawyersrealtygroup.com/contact-us/