Program educates public on foreclosure scams

WASHINGTON – Jan. 16, 2012 – According to Loan Modification Scam Alert, a program backed by NeighborWorks America and supported by the U.S. Congress, there is a new foreclosure filing every 15 seconds in America.

NeighborWorks is working with 235 community-based affiliates to educate and protect homeowners from unethical practices. The program says it has three goals: First, alert homeowners about scams. Second, help them spot a scam before it’s too late. Third, encourage them to report scammers to the authorities. The campaign hopes to educate owners at higher risk of scams by telling real-life scam stories in fliers, postcards, door hangers, e-cards, posters, print advertising, local PSAs, events, word of mouth and social media.

Three signs of a scam

According to Loan Modification Scam Alert, foreclosure scams generally have three possible red flags:
• The company asks for a fee in advance.
• The offer comes with a guarantee that a foreclosure can be stopped or a loan modified.
• The homeowner is told to stop paying the mortgage and, in some cases, told to pay the foreclosure relief company instead.

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