You would never consider them a stupid, or even naive couple. He is a retired executive and she has run her own successful businesses over the years. The caller said he could legally get the their lender to modify their adjustable rate mortgage because, in all likelihood the bank who held the mortgage did not have the paperwork on the loan.
He said he’d done it numerous times and that his legal team were proficient at it. If they would give him authorization to talk to the bank, and $5,000 in advance fees, he would bring results.
In 2011 Mortgage Fraud made it into the Top Ten of the Better Business Bureau’s Scams list. With $32 billion worth of Adjustable Rate Mortgages defaulting last October it will probably remain in the top ten this year.
You don’t have to be dumb or naive to get scammed, you only have to be stressed and, in a weak moment, have a caller convince you that they can help.
The couple got several follow up calls from this person. They couldn’t make up their minds. Something didn’t feel right, but the thought of a looming mortgage adjustment swayed things heavily in favor going ahead with it.
Fortunately they did some research. They could not find the caller’s name or his firm anywhere on the web even though he’d mentioned a website. They also spoke with their the Realtor, who warned them that it had all the markings of a scam.
The next time the caller contacted them they told him how they could not find his company on the internet, and that their Realtor had warned them about fraud. He had only one word for them, “Bye”. Even then part of them still wanted to believe him. That is what makes scams so dangerous–you want to believe.
If your mortgage has adjusted outside of your reach and you don’t know what to do, contact me today for a private consultation at 707.829.7493.