The other day one of my clients in the midst of foreclosure received a call from someone claiming to be with “Trustee Services.” They noted that her house was up for sale and told her that they could help her. Knowing that she was already represented by an attorney, she grew skeptical and gave me a call immediately.
Following up on this call, it turns out that the “Trustee” was nothing more than a third party agency based out of New York. They were a private company looking to capitalize on my client with a “guarantee” that it could stop the foreclosure process. It wasn’t clear whether they were attorneys or not. Luckily, my client was smart enough to avoid this trap.
The “Trustee” was able to find out that my client was in foreclosure as there are web sites which reveal when trustee sales take place. Unfortunately, these sites are used by vultures wishing to prey on homeowners fighting to stay in their home.
Foreclosure is a stressful time and many homeowners fall prey to third parties that will talk of guarantees and acting in their best interest. Yet, most of these companies are only seeking to make a quick buck leaving the homeowner with the same problems.
In Washington, the Foreclosure Fairness Program helps homeowners behind in their mortgage payments to have a fair shot at getting back to even. Only an attorney or a qualified housing counselor can refer a homeowner to this and its mediation program. The program is state run through the Washington State Department of Commerce.
If you are in the foreclosure process, you should consult with a housing counselor or an attorney familiar with the Foreclosure Fairness Program.