When the threat of home foreclosure is looming, it is typically a time of upheaval and uncertainty. The complexities and stress of avoiding home foreclosure can make someone more vulnerable to scam artists. While most Florida homeowners are adept at figuring out the process, many may still need to know some basic tips for avoiding scams or falling prey to those who wish to cause further financial harm for already struggling families.
One vital tip is to know where to turn for help. Scouring the Internet can be dangerous, as scammers can adeptly appear legitimate. One warning that a site may be a scam is if money is requested up front. Charging fees before providing a mortgage modification service is not a legal practice.
There are some entities that purport to help with the loan modification process by making promises that are impossible to keep. Having another party put an application in for a modification for a fee does not increase the likelihood that a mortgage modification will be approved. One vital tip is to never sign the deed over to another person or entity or to follow the advice of a company that advises a homeowner to stop paying his or her mortgage altogether.
It can be difficult to discern between fact and fiction when a Florida homeowner is concerned about the fate of the home and when avoiding home foreclosure is the top priority. Gathering as much information as possible before making major decisions can be beneficial and ease concerns about scams. Homeowners should also investigate all of the options available to them, such as filing for bankruptcy as a means of discharging debt or pursuing a court-supervised debt reorganization plan.
Source: blogs.palmbeachpost.com, “Eight tips for Florida homeowners to avoid scams”, Kim Miller, April 30, 2014