The foreclosure crisis has led to an increase in foreclosure-related scams. If you feel you may be the target or victim of a mortgage fraud or of foreclosure rescue scam, seek help! File a complaint with the Office of the Commissioner of Financial Regulation or call toll-free: (888) 784-0136.
Fraud and Scams – Know your rights!
- Mortgage fraud can include any misrepresentation or omission of information during the mortgage process.
- You have the right to sue those who commit fraud against you during the mortgage transaction.
- Beware of situations that involve someone advertising, sending an e-mail, or coming to your door offering a "way out" or "rescuing you from foreclosure." These "rescue scams" are illegal.
- There is never a fee to get assistance or information from your lender or a HUD-approved housing counselor. Beware of any person or organization asking you to pay up-front fees in exchange for providing mortgage counseling services or modification of a delinquent loan. Do not pay-walk away.
- Be cautious of anyone who says they can “save” your home if you sign or transfer over the deed to your house. Do not sign over the deed to your property to any organization or individual unless you are working directly with your mortgage lender or attorney.
- Never submit your mortgage payments to anyone other than your mortgage lender’s approval.
Example: A person will tell you, the only way to avoid foreclosure is to sign over the deed to your home. They will say that you can remain in the home as a renter, and buy it back later. In reality, they strip your home of its equity and stop making payments. You get evicted from the property and lose your home!
SOURCE: Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation