Monday, December 12, 2011

Are You Being Scammed By A Mortgage Modification Company?

With the economy going through the biggest mortgage crisis the United States has ever encountered, it is a prime time for scammers to take advantage of struggling homeowners across the nation. 
It’s crucial to understand that mortgage scams not only hurt the struggling homeowners, but the entire real estate market.  Scams have played a huge part of this housing market collapse and subsequent recession.  The combination of rising unemployment rates and diminishing homeowner income is leaving Americans scrambling to make ends meet.  That means reaching out and believing anyone who offers to save their homes.
Thousands of Americans have turned to the Home Affordable Modification Program, or HAMP, a federal program which offers struggling homeowners the option of mortgage modification.   However, scammers have become notorious for taking advantage of desperate homeowners.
Scams are usually pretty simple.  In return for an upfront fee, scammers (posing as foreclosure defense specialist, mortgage experts and even lawyers) claim to help homeowners fight their lenders and banks to get them out of foreclosure, typically by manipulating gaps in the law.  
The Mortgage Law Group wants homeowners to be careful when giving out your money.  It’s important to know the signs of a scam.  Commonly, scammers claim to be affiliated with HAMP, promising consumers lower monthly payments in return for up-front fee.
Such scams take place across the country and are advertised through several media outlets—internet, TV, radio, prints and even over the phone.  A consumer fraud alert noted that as a homeowner there are certain red flags to watch out for: 
If a company says they can “guarantee” a mortgage modification—red flag.  No company or person can guarantee or authorize those changes. 
Additionally, many people do not  know that the applications are free; you do not have to pay anyone to fill out an application.  You can complete it online at the Home Affordable Modification Program’s website at .
While filling out your application, it is vital to know what you are doing. The application must be completed entirely and have all the documents presented when turned in.  Seek professional advice on your situation before you begin paying for any service. 
If you think you are a victim to a mortgage modification scam you can report the case to the government.   If you want to avoid being scammed be sure to do your research.  One way to validate a law firm such as The Mortgage Law Group is by checking out the firm through the American Bar Association and the Supreme Court.  These particular institutions do not sell advertising space or charge a membership fee for a “good rating”, making them a reliable source for company background checks. 

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