Facing Foreclosure? Watch Out For These Common Foreclosure Scams.
Although foreclosure rates have dropped significantly over the past few years there are still a large number of homeowners every month that find themselves in this situation. So even thought the numbers of foreclosures are less now it does not mean that the number of dishonest and shady people have reduced their numbers.
We work with many homeowners in the Florida area that are facing foreclosure and trying to help them resolve their foreclosure issues and they relate some of the stories of the people that they have been contacted by to us.
Just hearing these stories screams “SCAM” loud and clear, but they try to convince the homeowner that they are reputable investors that only have their best interests in mind.
Not All Cash For Houses Florida Companies Are Legit
You have probably seen those bright yellow roadside signs that say “Cash For Houses” Now or come across a website similar to ours that state similar terms. IT is true that we buys houses in Florida and in this article I want to point out how to detect potential scams and separate the legitimate we buy houses companies from the so called companies that are only looking to take advantage of a homeowner that is in a difficult and stressful situation.
Don’t get me wrong the majority of the home buying companies are legitimate and provide a great service for the people that need to sell their houses for many different reasons.
You just have to be aware of the possibility that these unscrupulous people are out there and may try to take advantage of your bad situation.
These tips will help you determine the companies to avoid and how to spot the cash for houses companies that you can trust. You can also view the Blonde Girl Home buying process to get an idea on how the process works. It is the few scammers that puts the public on guard against the legitimate companies.
Here Are 5 Common Foreclosure Scams To Look Out For.
If you’re in search of a solution to avoid foreclosure, stop the foreclosure sale or looking for foreclosure help in Florida, below are some of the so called “Solutions” to beware of.
Paying The Mortgage Payment To Them
In this scam the homeowner is instructed by the scammer to make the mortgages payments to them (instead of paying the mortgage company directly) and they will take care of “working with the bank” and making your payments for you. Whatever you decide to do always talk to your mortgage company first and get their approval in writing before you decide to change anything about the way you are handing your payments now.
In this case the scammers basically take your mortgage payments and then disappear leaving you in a worse situation than when you started.
The Mortgage Payment Scam
Some scammers have pulled a scam where they instruct the home owner to pay mortgage payments to them (rather than the bank directly) and the scammer will then “handle paying the bank”. In no circumstances should you do this unless you get your mortgage company’s approval in writing. Some of these scammers will then pocket your payments and not pay the mortgage company at all… harming your credit and causing you to be worse off then before.
Source Fannie Mae Website
The “No Professionals Needed” Scam
In this scam the homeowner is convinced to sign without the representation of a legitimate title company or real estate attorney. These types of closing are sometimes called kitchen table closings.
Although closings can be performed anywhere it is always advised to have a third party involved such as a title company or real estate attorney that can represent you in the transaction, draw up the closing documents and other required paperwork.
This assures that there is no shady dealings going on in the transaction. There are traveling title companies and Notary’s that can be the neutral third party to make everyone feel comfortable with the transaction.
Charge you large upfront fees to help you work out a solution with your lender
As stated right on the Fannie Mae site and any other major bank or mortgage company website. Foreclosure help is free. The bank does not want to take the house back, they are in the business of loaning money not owning houses. There are also nonprofit companies that will help you to work out a solution for free.
What we see a lot is that the homeowner in foreclosure is paralyzed by the unknown and will not even call the bank to see what their options are. In most cases the banks have entire departments that help homeowners work out their situations and stay in their homes and this is all free. So don’t ever give anyone any money upfront to “work with the bank” on your behalf. It’s a scam…
Signing Over The Deed
In some instances the scammers will convince the homeowner that if they sign over the deed to them they can save their house from foreclosure. This is not the case unless you are working with the mortgage company to assign your mortgage to another buyer or possibly working on a short sale with the lender. But in both cases you will be working directly with your lender and getting their approval to transfer the mortgage or forgive a part of the debt if it is a short sale. It is still in your best interest to have a trusted real estate agent or professional to guide you through this process.
Signing Over Your Ownership Unsuspectingly
In this scam the sneaky scammer will convince the homeowner that they will pay off the mortgage for them and they can make payment to them. In this scam the transfer of the ownership is hidden in the paperwork and thus the house is transferred to the scammer. In a legit transaction everything will be disclosed before the closing. This scam runs along with the other where the homeowner is told that a title company is not needed and they can handle everything. Make sure to have that neutral third party involved to keep everyone straight in the agreement.
Do Your Research Before Deciding On Working With A Local Cash For Houses Company
We are cash home buyers in the Florida market and have a large presence in the Jacksonville metro area and we talk to people every week that are in some stage of the foreclosure process. So we get first hand information directly from the homeowners.
The unfortunate thing is that a homeowner in foreclosure may have reached out for help and the so called investor they contacted happened to be less than reputable. So they were very hesitant to reach out looking for help again but luckily after they do their research they find that Blonde Girl home buyers is an honest, legitimate home buying company in the area.
If you are in the process of deciding to call a “we buy houses” type company in your area just make sure that you check to make sure they are a real company that is registered with the state and have a positive rating in the area.
When looking to sell to a local home buying company don’t just look at the price they offer you for your house. A lot of times the newer investors will offer you a high amount and then come back to you in 10 days after they realized they offered you too much and cannot close on the property. Blonde Girl Home Buyers only makes fair cash offers that will work for all parties involved and that can taken all the way through to closing.
If you are behind on mortgage payments or facing a foreclosure and looking for information feel free to give Gracie a call at Blonde Girl Home Buyers in Jacksonville Florida. We have the experience and understand the foreclosure process in Florida to help with your situation. The consultation is free and there is no obligation at all. We’ll make a fair cash offer and we can buy your house “as is” no repairs for cash. This means no mortgage approvals or jumping through hoops to meet the banks requirements.
Call Us Today or contact us through our online form.
Blonde Girl Homebuyers
3948 3rd St S # 134
Jacksonville Beach FL 32250-5847