While going through hard financial times, you may try anything to dig yourself out of a quagmire. If you face foreclosure, do you know how criminals could try to take advantage of you?
The National Foundation for Credit Counseling explores foreclosure scams. Learn the signs of an offer too good to be true.
The false intermediary
Someone may approach you about negotiating with your lender on your behalf. To save yourself from foreclosure, you pay expensive fees. The criminal could tell you not to communicate with your lender or seek credit counseling. After you pay the fees, you never see your money or the person again. Sometimes, scammers keep the ruse going for months before vanishing.
The bait and switch
With this scam, the fraudster confuses you, so you do not realize you put your home on the market. You may think you agree to a new arrangement, such as a loan, that lets you keep your home. Rather than pay off past-due home loan payments, you instead lose your home.
The rent-to-buy charade
Someone may approach you about giving up homeownership and renting your property. You think you can buy back your home after a few years through a buy-back agreement. The terms of your agreement could shoot your home’s resale price well over New Jersey’s market value. Worse, the person taking advantage of you may increase your rent. If you miss a payment, you and your family could end up homeless. Even if you keep up with payments, the harsh agreement terms could keep you from regaining ownership of your property.
You should not become a victim because you cannot keep up with your home loan. Learning about scams helps you identify true ports in the storm.