This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

How to Save Yourself From the Foreclosure Fraud Epidemic

NEW YORK ( BankingMyWay) -- Even though U.S. home foreclosures are in decline -- they're down almost 7% from August to September, according to RealtyTrac -- foreclosure scams are still a big threat to delinquent U.S. homeowners.

According to the U.S. Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, suspicious activity reports were way up in the first six months of 2012.

By "suspicious activity" FinCen means potential scams such as requiring homeowners to transfer the titles of their homes to foreclosure repair firms, or having consumers fork over regular monthly payments to those firms. According to FinCen, "victims may lose thousands of dollars in fabricated fees and risk losing their homes as well."

According to the agency, financial institutions reported 2,360 "foreclosure-related SARs" in the first half of 2012, and that's almost as many as the 2,782 incidents reported in all of last year. FinCen says California is far and away the state with the most reported foreclosure scam activity.

What can struggling homeowners do to minimize or even eliminate the odds of being entangled in a foreclosure fraud situation?

The Better Business Bureau has some tips:
  • Avoid any firm that guarantees it can halt the foreclosure process. In the foreclosure prevention business, there are no guarantees.
  • Steer clear of any firm that tells you not to contact your lender, lawyer or credit or housing counselor. Firms that shell out that advice know those professionals will spot a scam right away and warn you.
  • Avoid any foreclosure prevention service that wants to charge a fee before helping, especially payments by cashier's check or a wire transfer.
  • Stay away from any firm that encourages you to lease your home so you can buy it back over time.
  • Reject any firm that recommends that you make your mortgage payments directly to it, rather than your lender.
  • Avoid a foreclosure firm that demands you transfer your property deed or title to it.

The U.S government offers a hotline for victims and potential victims of foreclosure scams at 1-888-995-HOPE.

There's really no reason to fall victim to foreclosure scams. With a decent amount of due diligence, spotting a fraud situation should be a no-brainer -- and a no-win situation for potential fraud artists looking to separate you from your money.

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
AAPL $93.74 0.00%
FB $117.58 0.00%
GOOG $693.01 0.00%
TSLA $240.76 0.00%
YHOO $36.60 0.00%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,773.64 -57.12 -0.32%
S&P 500 2,065.30 -10.51 -0.51%
NASDAQ 4,775.3580 -29.9330 -0.62%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs