Foreclosure scams for the past 5 years have reached record high levels.
The foreclosures are the legal process where the lender in order to recover the balance of a loan from a borrower, forces the sale of their houses. However, we have seen unscrupulous and dishonest people come out of the closet with their aim of preying on poor troubled homeowners and take advantage of their difficult times.
Thus, recently we have witnessed an increasing number of Foreclosure Scams in Palm Beach County in the recent years.
We are reliable real estate agents who have spoken to many homeowners regarding the foreclosures and worked closely with them. You will be horrified to learn some of the stories we have heard from the people on how they have been scammed from reputable ‘real estate investors’.
However, Not All “We Buy Houses” Companies Are Scams
You must have come across the website like ours and signs that reads that “We Buy Houses Palm Beach County”. It is true that there are many real estate investors that do buy houses like us, but the question is that are they reliable? To answer that you have to walk through a guide to spot the difference between the scam investors to legitimate companies with great reputation like us.
Let me acquaint you with some of the essential things to look at and how to spot reputable house buyers like us v/s potential scams in our area. We will explore how a small percentage of people are taking advantage of the homeowners in their desperate time and making money out of it.
This article is solely written as a consumer awareness guide to help you spot the scams and avoid them completely, over the ‘we buy houses’ companies that are not only reputable but are a group of home buyers who still have their sense of integrity intact.
Signs That You Are Stepping Into A Trap Of A Scam Investor
If you are in over your head and your house is up for foreclosure, but you earnestly wish to get foreclosure help in Palm Beach County, here are some of the solutions that scam investors may offer up and which should be a red flag to you.
Charge an Upfront Fee
Fannie Mae once said that help is always free. However, some ‘we buy houses’ companies will charge an upfront fee to find a solution by talking to your lender about your mortgage. This should be a warning sign to you. A reliable company like us will never charge you to talk with your lender and will also provide free counseling. You must never fall for those companies which seek compensation to provide you mortgage assistance from your lender.
Signing the Deed to Save Your House
This is another warning sign that indicates that you are surely being pulled into a trap. Some of the unsavory companies will ask you to sign a deed which essentially means that you are giving up the ownership of your house to them. Fannie Mae advises that you should never sign any deed unless you are physically selling your house to the company or working with your mortgage company to forgive your debt. In either of the options, it is still best to seek legal advice and ask the company to do everything under a reputable title company, so everything involving this paperwork is clear and legal.
Giving Ownership to Your Home Unknowingly
Many of the scammers make false promises to the owners that they will pay off their mortgage payments and ask them to sign a few documents. While the apparent clauses in the document appear in the favor of the homeowners, the scammers cunningly hide a few clauses to help their own interests. Thus, the homeowner unknowingly transfers the ownership to the company. You should be aware that a reputable company will always be transparent and will lay all the clauses on the table before asking you to sign the documents. However, it is in the best interest of yours to consult a lawyer before signing any document, even if written by a reputable company.
Persuading that you don’t need a Title Company in Selling Your Home
You need to hire the professional services of a neutral third party such as a Title Company. This is especially true if you are selling your house in a hurry or in a foreclosure. The Title Company is responsible for all the paperwork and will draw up the closing documents and help you with the closing. Using the service of the Title Company ensures that you can trust that your house selling proceedings are done in accordance with law and there is no forgery involved. However, if the company insists on “Kitchen table closing”meaning to chose the closing and to sign all the papers at home and not at the attorney’s or your title company’s office, then it should be a warning signal to you.
The Mortgage Payment Scam
The worst condition you can face is when the scam company convinces you to pay the mortgage payments to them and the scammer in turn promises to handle paying the bank. Under no circumstances, should you agree to this clause until your mortgage company approves in writing this arrangement. We have seen that often the scammers company takes payments from you and do not pay your mortgage companies, thus badly running your credit score and increases the chances of your foreclosure.
(Source: Summary of information from the Fannie Mae info site)
Do Some Research On the Company You Want To Do Business With
Since we have been working closely and helping people in foreclosures, we have seen how people have been duped by the scammers before they found us. Therefore, to all those people, we earnestly ask them to do some homework before trusting to sell their house to some unknown company. You must have hundreds of questions to ask to “we buy houses” companies which you should not hesitate to ask. The honest companies will answer your queries and make you an offer. But, often many scammers after making offers back out since they do not have enough money to close off the deal. With us, you do not have to worry because we remain true to our word. We’ve been in business many years. We make offers only to those properties we can close on.
If you need assistance in foreclosure or just want to know your options of selling your house, then you must visit your local foreclosure counseling service or browse through this website. We also deal with selling houses for cash and therefore if you need to sell your house fast, give us a call and give us all the details regarding your house and situation. We make an offer in 24 hours and will make sure to close in as little as 7 days. The best part of working with us that we do not put any pressure on our clients. You can take our offer, discuss it with your attorney, compare with other “we buy houses” companies and come to us when you are fully satisfied with the offer made. There is no compulsion and hurry as we are here to serve you.
For a Fair no obligation offer today, fill out the short form here and wait for our call. We will get back to you shortly and ask you more about your property and will make an offer today. We look forward to working with you.