Foreclosure Education

Foreclosure Scam Alerts

Foreclosure Education

As the old saying goes, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. That’s a good adage to keep in mind if you decide to seek assistance in avoiding foreclosure. There is no shortage of questionable people or companies offering to “rescue” you from foreclosure. The reality is there are no quick-fixes for a foreclosure action.

Be wary of anyone who claims he or she can “fix” the problem and always check credentials before entering into any type of legal or financial agreement. Remember, contacting your lender at the first sign of trouble is your best defense to falling victim to foreclosure scams. Review the alerts and tips below to avoid becoming the next victim.

Loan Modification Scam Alert

The Loan Modification Scam Alert is a joint campaign between government and non-government organizations designed to give homeowners the tools to protect themselves from foreclosure scam. Read the stories of those who’ve experienced scams first-hand, learn how to spot a scam and find out how to file a report if you think you have been a victim of a scam.
Learn More

Federal Trade Commission Scam Warnings

The Federal Trade Commission is one of many government agencies working to help families impacted by mortgage foreclosures. Visit the consumer protection section of the FTC website for recordings, videos and blogs regarding current foreclosure scams.
Learn More

Florida Attorney General’s Office

Florida residents may contact the Attorney General’s Office to report mortgage foreclosure scams by calling 1-866-9-NO-SCAM (1-866-966-7226).
File a Complaint

Ten Warning Signs of a Mortgage Modification Scam

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has compiled a list of warning signs to consider when approached by so-called foreclosure experts.

Pay us $1,000, and we'll save your home
Some legitimate housing counselors may charge small fees, but fees that amount to thousands of dollars are likely a sign of potential fraud — especially if they are charged up-front, before the "counselor" has done any work for you. Be wary of companies that require you to provide a cashier's check or wire transfer before they take any action on your behalf.

I guarantee I will save your home – trust me
Beware of guarantees that a person or company can stop foreclosure and allow you to remain in your house. Unrealistic promises are a sign that the person making them will not consider your particular circumstances and is unlikely to provide services that will actually help you.

Sign over your home, and we'll let you stay in it
Be very suspicious if someone offers to pay your mortgage and rent your home back to you in exchange for transferring title to your home. Signing over the deed to another person gives that person the power to evict you, raise your rent, or sell the house. Although you will no longer own your home, you still will be legally responsible for paying the mortgage on it.

Stop paying your mortgage
Do not trust anyone who tells you to stop making payments to your lender and servicer, even if that person says it will be done for you.

If your lender calls, don't talk to them
Your lender should be your first point of contact for negotiating a repayment plan, modification, or short sale. It is vital to your interests to stay in close communication with your lender and servicer, so they understand your circumstances.

Your lender never had the legal authority to make a loan
Do not listen to anyone who claims that "secret laws" or "secret information" will be used to eliminate your debt and have your mortgage contract declared invalid. These scammers use sham legal arguments to claim that you are not obligated to pay your mortgage. These arguments don't work.

Just sign this now; we'll fill in the blanks later
Take the time to read and understand anything you sign. Never let anyone else fill out paperwork for you. Don't let anyone pressure you into signing anything that you don't agree with or understand.

Call 1-800-Fed-Loan
This may be a scam. Some companies trick borrowers into believing that they are affiliated with or are approved by the government or tell you that you must pay them high fees to qualify for government loan modification programs. Keep in mind that you do not have to pay to participate in legitimate government programs. All you need to do is contact your lender to find out if you qualify.

File for bankruptcy and keep your home
Filing bankruptcy only temporarily stops foreclosure. If your mortgage payments are not made, the bankruptcy court will eventually allow your lender to foreclose on your home. Be aware that some scammers will file bankruptcy in your name, without your knowledge, to temporarily stop foreclosure and make it seem as though they have negotiated a new payment agreement with your lender.

Why haven't you replied to our offer? Do you want to live on the streets?
High-pressure tactics signal trouble. If someone continually contacts you and pressures you to work with them to stop foreclosure, do not work with that person. Legitimate housing counselors do not conduct business that way.

Source: U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.