Around the Indianapolis real estate market and the rest of the country, homeowners are finding themselves in dire financial states regarding their homes. While some are simply struggling just to pay their mortgage, others are in deep trouble of a negative equity situation. Because some homeowners, including Indiana residents, are desperate to fix their financial trouble, they are perfect prey for the loan modification scams currently being advertised today.
The Federal Trade Commission is weighing in on this issue with their concerns. The head of the Commission recently said that they are pondering putting a ban on all payments required up front when dealing with one of these types of companies.
Officials from the government claim that those who run these loan modification scams charge upwards of $3000 in an fee upfront to help. They feel these programs being offered rarely deliver. They go so far as to say if you are required to pay such a significant fee up front, that you are encountering a major red flag.
Two companies just recently came under fire by the Federal Trade Commission for such potential loan modification scams. These companies are Infinity Group Services and Nations Housing Modification Center, both based out of California. They are being brought up on civic charges for taking money from consumers and delivering very little in return to actually assist them.
Another company potentially in the hot seat is United Credit Adjusters (operating under a program called Loss Mitigation Services) out of New Jersey.
Not only is the Federal Trade Commission looking at putting a moratorium on charging fees for loan modification services, they are also looking at regulating how these companies can promote their services. Right now, you will find a good deal of their advertising on late night television and billboards. Of particular concern are the marketing materials that look like official government publications. These promotions are fooling homeowners into thinking these programs are government-backed and therefore legitimate.
The Nations Housing Modifications Center is a particular culprit of this by producing a mailing that not only looked official but also used an address from Pennsylvania Ave. It can easily be misconstrued that these kind of publications with addresses that appear to be located near the state Capitol are real government programs designed to help out consumers. The exact opposite is sometimes actually true.
In our world of increasing international company involvement, tracking these scams may hold difficulty. It is felt that many of these operations manipulate from other countries. The tracking down of where the scams are coming from will also create a challenge.
For now, over 20 companies are in hot water with the government as they have had charges filed against them for operating loan modification scams. These 20 companies are being held accountable for having their advertisements designed to look like they are being backed by the current Obama administration and their legitimate efforts of loan modification.
The Obama administration does have a free counseling service operated through the Making Homes Affordable program which is not tied to any outside company asking for upfront fees
The effort continues as very recently twelve state attorneys conferenced with Eric Holder (US Attorney General), Shaun Donovan (Housing and Urban Development Secretary) and Timothy Geithner (Treasury Secretary) to talk over what is going on in their area regarding anti-fraud.
Indianapolis homeowners turn to loan modification programs because they are looking for options. Indianapolis REALTORS® can not only show you Indianapolis homes for sale but can partner with you as you decide whether or not its time to ease the pressure and list your home for sale.