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Real Estate Scammers Prey on Foreclosed Homeowners

If you are facing foreclosure in Florida be aware that real estate scammers prey on foreclosed homeowners so be cautious of anyone who offers to help. “A difficult national and Florida economy brings out the worst in criminals,” said Winter Park, Florida, real estate attorney Eric Lanigan of Lanigan and Lanigan, P.L.,

“No matter how challenged you feel financially, no matter how desperate you think you are, don’t turn to the wrong people for help with your property. The wide range of real estate scams has grown.

Criminals and Real Estate Scammers Prey on Foreclosed Homeowners 

“What may appear to be a government sanctioned entity, an innocent non-profit offering to advise you of the legal ramifications of a foreclosure, is generally not in your best interest.

“Why? Because only an attorney, an experienced real estate law attorney who has extensive knowledge of foreclosure law can advise you legally. Work with a licensed attorney. If you don’t see the license hanging on the wall, get out of the office.”

Beware of Free Foreclosure Advice; It May Be a Real Estate Scam

The problem is, explained Lanigan, that criminals are preying on financially devastated people who will do anything to save their home. Innocent Individuals and families are looking for advice and finding it in the wrong places. But when they listen to it, they’re taken in by the sweeping gestures suggested. There are promises made, there are false directions given.

The legal paperwork is so inept and sloppy that a courtroom would throw it out. There can be incomplete, inaccurate, completely incorrect documentation. If an individual has gone to listen to one of these fake “Help Defend Your Home From Foreclosure” places that doesn’t have any legal knowledge, expertise, let alone a law degree and license to practice, you are very likely to hurt your chance of ever keeping your home.

In fact, you may go to court against a bank that is lawyer heavy and more than ready to take your home in the foreclosure proceedings. You could lose your home with the false support given to you in some bad advice that you got from a virtual stranger at a non-licensed legal group.

Fake Consumer Help Organizations Can’t “Save Your Home”

Be wary of organizations that offer the ability to “help consumers detect foreclosure fraud.” Only a licensed and experienced Florida real estate attorney can legally provide foreclosure advice.

Look for licensed, attorneys with experience. Foreclosure law is complex. If you’re not sure if they’re a legitimate business, call the Better Business Bureau. Be wary of what you read about non-profit foreclosure support businesses online in reviews because you don’t know the source of the reviews. Many times, desperate, worried, suspicious and burned buyers go to websites for information that seem to be consumer resource websites.

They’ll offer paid services for “real” land reports. “Actual” values so you won’t get ripped off. “Our checklist” of things to look for.  “Insider buyer’s guide and tips” to finding an honest realtor. Click here to complete your order….

The more information you look for, the more fees you’re asked to pay for downloading reports that are supposed to help you.

Desperation over what to do with a home that’s under water, can lead to poor judgment. But instead of waiting until the sheriff is knocking on the door with an eviction notice, is not the answer.

“I Can Save Your Credit” Foreclosure Scams

If you see signs on the side of the highways, exits and street corners, taxis, trucks, and bus stops that say “we pay cash for your home”, “we buy homes anywhere, in any condition, at any price,” be cautious and pay attention. And, if you think you are facing a foreclosure contact an attorney with foreclosure experience.

In this scam, the scammers exclaiming “I can save your credit” whether online or in person, should be avoided. The criminal plan centers around a real estate industry “professional” that researches foreclosed properties and then approaches the homeowner.

In an illegal and false call to the homeowner, the person poses as a mortgage officer and asks to meet with the homeowner. The person is a scammer who offers to help the homeowner pay and save their credit. The homeowner is told that the “mortgage officer” feels for the situation and sees a way out with a simple switch of the property paperwork.

The homeowner, believing the scam willingly signs a series of false documents, and believes that the mortgage officer is helping by taking on the debt for a monthly payment and an interest in the property.

The homeowner is told that he can remain in the home and is given the option to buy the property back at a later date of the homeowner’s choosing. But in the meantime, the homeowner can now simply pay the “lowered mortgage payment” directly to the mortgage officer.

In some cases the situation may have turned even worse. The rescuer can get a second loan on the home having used the paperwork provided for signature by the homeowner. The officer will take the profits and disappear. In other cases they even rented the home forcing the existing resident to be evicted.

Don’t risk your home, your finances, your family security by working with non-attorneys who say that they can help you for little or no money down. Consult with real estate attorney Eric Lanigan and Roddy Lanigan for foreclosure help from real estate lawyers with experience since 1976.

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