By Ryan Jackson
Unethical tactics used by banks and lender mortgage servicing companies to get homeowners to leave their homes are still being used, despite new guidelines issued to banks as a result of the $25 billion agreement between the nation’s largest five lenders and state attorney generals, according to the founder of an online foreclosure services firm.
“The biggest disadvantage that a homeowner has in a foreclosure situation is lack of knowledge,” said Kyle Ransom, who started Go Fight Foreclosure dot com. “It is important that homeowners learn how to fight foreclosure by challenging the mortgage lenders authority to foreclose on them, which many times can result in the mortgage lender working with the homeowner and not foreclosing.”
Ransom, who was a mortgage broker 16 years before launching the website to help troubled homeowners says that most lenders “don’t play fair” in the foreclosure process and use shark attorneys to scare homeowners.
Underhanded foreclosure tactics that Ransom says lenders use that work to make the homeowner leave without challenging foreclosure filings include changing locks on empty homes, cancelling homeowners insurance and offering mortgage borrowers a deed in lieu of foreclosure rather than a mortgage modification.
Banks sometimes send homeowners who are in default of mortgages a letter in the mail or contact them by phone, stressing that they have learned the house is empty and they are planning to change the locks to secure the property when the home is actually occupied by the homeowner.
Lenders also offer a deed in lieu of foreclosure, especially when missing documents can not be found to gain authority to foreclose on the property. This allows the bank to take back the house without having to formally foreclose on a home.