Mortgage Modification Scams

We have all seen the commercials that have been popping up over the past few months that are made to look like real news broadcasts.  They promise that all of these new reforms will allow these mortgage companies to help you refinance your home into an affordable rate.  Before we even get started on these commercials, you need to understand that the U.S. Government has set up a website with all of the necessary information, with its Making Home Affordable program (Which is actually two programs, HAMP and HARP – consult the government website for more info).  This website has all the necessary info for you to ensure a proper modification.

Now on to scammy modification companies.  We can get into the scams that started this mess, but this is not a dissertation, so we shall avoid that mess.    Never, ever, pay a third party.  Both government programs (HAMP and HARP) can be done directly through your loan servicer.  If that means avoiding those pesky phone calls, and ignoring commercials that seem to hold all the answers then do it.  In this situation, common sense means, dealing directly with the government, and using the aforementioned government website as your primary resource.

These scams will target those who are down on their luck, people who have lost their jobs or are living beyond their means.  Mortgage modification is not something that you should leave up to a third party with some nice advertisement.  Especially when you will probably have to give them every last bit of info on yourself, down to social security numbers and birth-dates.  Just reading that should give you goose-bumps, and put it into your head that you should be seeking help, not the other way around.

If you have to sign paperwork, do not do it immediately.  Read it over.  Take your time to read every phrase, and clause.  If something does not make sense, ask a lawyer, or a HUD approved counselor.  Do not make yourself even more vulnerable by giving money to someone else.

If you are facing foreclosure, you can also speak with a HUD Counselor for Free.  Understand that while people may appear to be helping they may be helping you dig yourself into an even larger and deeper hole.

Mortgage Modification scams can be tricky.  Keep an eye out for any warning sign, such as having to sign paperwork immediately, paying somebody other than your loan servicer, declaring bankruptcy, and signing your deed or property title over to a third party.

Being smart in this situation means using the government’s website and HUD’s website as your main resource.  And common sense means following those smarts and making sure you do not put yourself in an even deeper hole.

Mortgage modification can save you a lot of money if done properly, but remember to be smart about it, and not put your faith in someone or a group that is not associated directly with either your mortgage provider or government.

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