Sunday, January 28, 2007

How people's credit can be ruined by a mortgage fraudster

The terms mortgage fraud and identity theft keeping popping up in the same stories. Hard to believe that someone could buy real estate with another person's identity, but it seems to be happening more and more often.

Another good argument that people should review their credit report on a regular basis.

Before getting involved in a real estate deal that might be "too good to be true," it might be a good idea to educate yourself and make sure you've done all your homework.

USA Today interviewed a convicted fraudster - who openly talks about how he defrauded a lot of people, including senior citizens (he considers them lucrative targets).

From straw buying -- where people are conned into letting their names and credit be used to buy properties to people having their homes stolen from them -- the convicted real estate fraudster (Brent Barber) gives some interesting insight into the "seedy" world of mortgage fraud.

USA Today story, here.

And in another story, a former nun had her identity stolen and used to buy properties (she almost lost her own house).

This telling story was written by Michelle McPhee, who is a Police Bureau Chief and reporter for the Boston Herald.

Interesting read, here.

Mortgage fraud is a crime that by recent estimates costs over $1 billion a year in the United States. Rachel Dollar, an attorney and broker, who is an expert in mortgage fraud does an interesting blog for anyone, who wants to become more educated in the subject, here.

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