At CSMC Mortgage, we’re dedicated to protecting our customers, and ensuring that they do not become victims of identity theft due to common mortgage scams. That’s why we’re sharing a mortgage forbearance warning released by the Ventura County District Attorney.
Due to the COVID-19 coronavirus crisis, many people throughout America are having trouble paying their mortgages, and are looking for help through forbearance. Applications for mortgage forbearance have jumped more than 2,000% since the beginning of the crisis.
Unfortunately, scammers are taking advantage of this crisis with forbearance, loan modification and mortgage scams. So here are a few simple steps you can take to avoid these scams and stay safe!
1. Never Pay Anyone To Negotiate Your Mortgage Payment For You
First, it is illegal for any person or entity to charge an advance fee to negotiate with your lender on your behalf. If you are approached about mortgage forbearance or assistance and the person requests a fee, ignore them, and do not use their services.
2. Contact Your Lender Directly For Forbearance Help
Most lenders have implemented forbearance and loan modification plans that can help you avoid foreclosure and keep your finances in order through the COVID-19 coronavirus crisis.
For example, the CARES Act passed by Congress includes a number of helpful programs for lenders who have FHA loans from the Federal Housing Administration, including a suspension on both foreclosures and evictions for FHA-insured single-family mortgages.
Even if you don’t have an FHA loan, you can contact your lender for assistance. Your lender will be able to walk you through any programs or options they have for you to explore.
3. Never Sign A Deed Or Title For Your Home Away To Anyone
There is never any need to transfer home ownership to any other person or entity as part of a legitimate forbearance or loan relief program.
4. Do Not Pay Mortgage Payments To Anyone Other Than Your Lender
Your lender is entitled to your mortgage payments. Nobody else is. If an “expert” in forbearance or mortgages claims that you need to pay part or all of your mortgage directly to them, they are lying, and attempting to scam you.
You could end up paying them, and still owing your monthly payment to your lender, too – which could put you in a very difficult financial situation, and potentially even lead to foreclosure.
5. Be Wary Of Advertisements For Mortgage Forbearance Assistance
You should be suspicious of any mailed advertisements, telephone advertisements, or online advertisements that are advertising mortgage forbearance assistance. There is a very good chance that the ad is a scam, or is misrepresenting the services that are being offered.
As mentioned above, the best way to get help if you can’t pay your mortgage is to contact your lender immediately to explore your options for forbearance, refinancing, and/or mortgage adjustments.
Take Note Of This Mortgage Forbearance Warning – Don’t Fall Victim To Scams!
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