My top 10 tips to spot "Predatory Investors" and "Misleading Scams"
There are many companies and individuals in Michigan that promise that "I Buy Houses" or "I Stop Foreclosures". Let's take a look at the ones to avoid:
Many of these companies are more interested in taking your money and possibly not doing one thing to help you. My company helps people in Foreclosure situations - just like yours.
You are not alone in this situation. Don't feel that you are - we can help.
You need to know all the facts about foreclosure. Here are some questions to ask when you are face to face with a company, individual or "professional" who will claim to help. For a complete list of all questions to ask anyone offering to "help you", take a look at our Action Steps page.
Here are my Top Tips and Questions to ask:
- There are many companies and people who claim "We Buy Houses" and who are "Investors" and "want to help" with your foreclosure situation - just look at the stack of mail you've been getting lately. Are they qualified to help? Ask to see their testimonials - we have many - click here.
- Most of these folks have gone to a seminar or bought an "investor" kit off of eBay or from a late-night TV infomercial. They are far from "expert" status.
Foreclosures are all our team does - 40-60 hrs a week. Do we have the experience you should be looking for? I think we do - and we can prove it to you - contact us - click here.
- Be aware that some "professionals", who you would think could help and should be well-informed in foreclosures, are not. Some of these professionals can include: Appraisers, Attorneys, Insurance Agents, Mortgage Brokers or Lenders and potentially-misleading, fake "Counseling" or "Mediation" Agencies. I am not saying you won't find some competence in these fields, but generally speaking, you need a specialist. Don't let these folks intimidate you. Check their qualifications (see below) to be sure they meet up to your standards. Get testimonials and referrals! Click here for ours.
- Can the person who is sitting across the table from you make a legitimate offer to simply buy your house for cash from you or the bank? Where will they get the funds? Do they have to borrow the funds from somewhere - or do they truly have cash?
- Some "investors" have no cash and can't get a loan; they want to "Buy" it they way the DVD has taught them - with some alternative means - are you good with that?
It is critically important for you to understand that all Investors are NOT alike here's why.
Print this out and take these questions with you when you meet with them.
Do NOT work with any Investor, Realtor®, "Expert" or even an Attorney unless they can satisfactorily answer the following 10 questions:
- Are you a member of a national association of investors? For example, only members of the Association of Real Estate Investment Professionals (like us) abide by this Association's strict Code of Professional Ethics - click here.
- Are you going to charge me for something I could easily do myself (like negotiations with the lender).
- Are you an approved investor with my lender?
- Have you been helping people stop foreclosure for at least three full years? It takes more than a year or two to get a "Masters Degree". You don't want a rookie, do you? Ask them how many people they and their company have helped in successfully stopping foreclosures. You need real numbers here.
- Do you invest in continued education seminars, events and meetings? We do - in fact we've spent over $100,000 in education and legal advice. Do you think that makes us a little more "in the know", "on the cutting edge" and "on top of our game"? You bet it does.
- How did you learn to do what you do?
- Do you have a complete team of people, all with different specialties? Stopping a foreclosure is a team sport. Sure, it can be done solo, but if you want the best chances of success, you'll need to be assured that they have: Negotiation Experts, Attorneys, Closing Specialists, Marketers, Top Notch Realtors®, a full-fledged Repair Team, National Coaches (even Tiger Woods has a coach) and most importantly, a "Point Person". No single person can do all of this effectively. Ask them who is on their team.
- Do you have a designated Point Person to work with me? This is the guy/gal who runs the show. She will be your main contact so you need to be comfortable with him or her. She needs to be understanding of your situation (not crude, abrasive or insincere) and accountable for the results (no excuses). Finally you need to know you can contact her and if you can't get them "live", that you'll get a response back in a reasonable about of time. In all foreclosures, time is your worst enemy; don't let some company make matters worse. Find out who the point person is and how soon they can start working with you.
- Can you help me improve my credit so I can move on? Ask them if they can provide you with a credit repair solution to improve your credit after they stop the foreclosure, or are you on your own afterwards? We help people clean up after the mess Click here.
- Are you familiar with the foreclosure process in Michigan? Every state is different. In Michigan, there isn't much time between the time a lender starts the foreclosure process and when the sheriff sale (foreclosure auction) takes place. You want to work with someone who is aware of this and makes good use of the time. Michigan is the only state we work in.
How would you like this weight off your shoulders - so you can back to better times, contact us - we are here to help you in this uncomfortable situation. Remember, you don't have to go this alone.
Joel Zieve, Senior Specialist
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