Five Scams A Homeowner Should Always Be On The Lookout For
Owning a home is a big responsibility and a big financial burden. It can be hard enough on its own for a lot of people to deal with. You certainly don’t need to have to deal with the risk of getting caught up in a scam. Unfortunately, it happens to thousands of homeowners every year. Being aware of the risk is the best defense you have, so here are some of the scams to keep your eyes out for.
The renovation scammers
There are a lot of reasons and ways people might want to change their home. From getting a new bathroom fitted to adding an extra layer of security to their home. When you’re choosing people to work on your home, be very careful. If someone is trying to pressure you into a limited time offer, don’t buy into it. Don’t sign anything before you’ve read it. While you might think you’re signing up for a cheap renovation or a one-time security fix, you could be signing up for a much longer deal.
Foreclosure rescue scams
There are scams that are even more insidious than trying to get you to sign up to a plan that’s not in your best interest. People going through foreclosure are already financially vulnerable. Yet there are those who will offer rescue plans, like buying the home and renting it out to you. However, as http://www.cogburnlaw.com states, the rental plans are almost always a lot higher than you can handle. Instead of getting rid of debt, you might be shifting it to an even more unscrupulous debtor.
Loan modification scams
There are a lot of trustworthy legal advisors who can genuinely help you modify your loans. It’s an effective way for homeowners to reduce the payments they have to make on their home. But if your loan modifiers are asking you to pay lump sums up front or pay your rent towards them instead, they are likely not the help you’re looking for. Instead, they’re scam-artists, praying on your hopes of making your situation financially livable.
Identity theft and fraud
One of the most common kinds of fraud today is regarding your identity. Identity fraudsters might use your accounts or even your insurance, putting you in a much worse financial situation. Be careful about where you put your details online and don’t share information with people unless you know them. In your home, make sure that you’re shredding any evidence of financial or personal details. A lot of fraudsters are more than happy to go trash diving for their ill-gotten gains.
Homeowner’s association fraud
Lots of people join homeowner’s associations when they move into a new home. If you do join an HOA, however, you need to pay close attention to them. Many HOAs have been implicated in scams run by insiders using it for their own gain. Look at sites like http://www.scambusters.org/hoascams.html to see the kind of things you should be keeping an eye out for.
Most scams target the most vulnerable amongst us. When you’re in financial trouble, you need to be particularly aware of any offers coming your way. If it sounds too good to be true, it likely is.