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How to protect yourself from mortgage fraud

As an Illinois resident, you may be considering purchasing your first home, filing for foreclosure, refinancing or making some other major decision regarding your living situation. Whatever the case may be, dealing with home matters can be stressful and overwhelming. It can be difficult to make important decisions when your emotions are running high. During this time, however, it is important that you do not become the next victim of mortgage fraud. People may intentionally pray upon homeowners who are looking to refinance their homes, file for foreclosure or purchase a new home. In order to avoid these deviant con-artists, you must be aware of scam tactics and take precautions when dealing with financial matters regarding your home.

First, it is crucial that you question everything when making decisions on your home, according to the U.S. Department of Justice. Make sure that you fully understand the process and avoid making decisions without knowing what is going on. If you have questions regarding a process or term in the contract, be sure to ask. You may even speak to several people regarding your situation before making a decision.

People who commit mortgage fraud often advertise through mail, television or internet media. If you choose to use someone that you find through one of these sources, make sure that they are licensed, qualified, reputable and trustworthy. Be wary if loan officers ask you to pay upfront or sign a contract before they will begin working on your case. This is not normal procedure, and is outlawed in many states.

This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.


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