In our last blog post, we discussed the common types of foreclosure scams that are popping up across the nation from con-artists who are attempting to cash in on the recent foreclosure crisis. If you are interested in working with foreclosure rescue companies, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) offers some helpful additional tips on avoiding foreclosure scams.
First, you should be aware that you can always work with a HUD-approved counselor on foreclosure or mortgage related issues, and they should be free. You could also consider approaching your lender for help and ask them what programs are available for assistance. They should have personnel who are aware of the options available for mortgage modification or other foreclosure alternatives.
If you decide to take advantage of a modification program, make all mortgage payments directly to your lender. Relying on someone else to send that money to the lender is taking a big risk. Also, if you are signing up for a foreclosure alternative, be aware of what you are signing. Read every single document, and don’t sign anything with errors, even if the other party promises to correct them. Get any promises offered by the program in writing – oral promises involving real estate are typically not enforceable in most states.
Many scammers are tricking people into turning over the deeds to their homes. Do not sign over your deed unless you get advice from an independent party such as an attorney or a financial advisor. If something seems suspicious about the program you are considering entering into, contact the FTC or the OCC’s Customer Assistance Group.
Facing foreclosure in New Jersey can be extremely stressful and can leave people vulnerable to scams. If you are looking at a foreclosure or a foreclosure alternative, contact NJ mortgage foreclosure avoidance attorney Robert Manchel at 866-503-5655. Talking with a knowledgeable authority on foreclosures and bankruptcies can help many consumers learn about their options.