The new predators have come with the proliferation of “loan modification” companies. They seem to spring up overnight…scam artists who pledge to get a mortgage loan modified. But first…the borrower, already in dire financial straits, must send anywhere from $800-$3,000 in “upfront fees”…most of which do not result in any action whatsoever that will benefit the already strapped borrower. This year the FBI expects to track “at least” 174,000 reports of suspicious activity in mortgage related fraud cases. This is a 276 percent increase over 2008.
Many of the fraudsters are former mortgage brokers, real estate agents, and pushy telemarketers. If you, or anyone that you know are considering falling prey to a “loan modification” plan that is not directly associated with the company holding the mortgage…i.e., your lender, should immediately begin a due diligence investigation of those folks who are requesting that they send money.