Foreclosure Scams

By: Tina Stein
By: Tina Stein

"I got impatient. I wanted to get things resolved quick cause the foreclosure the phone calls kept coming."

The pressure to stay out of foreclosure is getting thousands of homeowners into trouble. A Machesney Park mom, who prefers to remain anonymous was two months behind on her mortgage and was willing to believe any sort of mailer offering to bail her family out.

"It says we can help say save your home. I called them and I thought why not."

She paid Florida-based Mortgage Assistance Solutions 12-hundred dollars to provide the loan needed to prevent foreclosure.

"It seemed pretty legit, it seemed fine."

But the family was never bailed out. And was summoned for the inevitable. She since got a five-hundred dollar refund. But says she wasn't helped in any way. The Illinois Attorney General's office filed a lawsuit against Mortgage Assistance Solutions and nine other mortgage companies for their requirement of upfront fees.

"Advance fee loans in the U.S. and Canada are illegal and secondly they're never gonna provide you with a loan," says Better Business Bureau Director Dennis Horton.

Horton says 90-percent of people working with such "rescue brokers" never get a loan....and only fall victim to this scheme. In fact, the BBB warns against 50 advanced fee loan operations between Rockford and Chicago. With two using Rockford addresses in their scam.

This family managed to bounce back, but others may not be as lucky, which is why it's so important to check a company's background before we hand over the cash.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development works with 23-hundred counseling agencies nationwide, who deal with foreclosure. You can also check the BBB for reliability reports.

23 News spoke with an agent at Mortgage Assistance Solutions and they say they are winding down operations and plan on closing its' doors due to stiffer legislation against loan officers.


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