Friday, December 28, 2007

Beware of Mortgage Tree Lending

San Jose Better Business Bureau is warning borrowers not to do business with a company called Mortgage Tree Lending. The company claims to be from San Jose but they are actually located in Canada. This company steals money from clients through a classic advance-fee scam. Preying on desperate borrowers, the company promises to "secure" a loan if the borrower sends a "Loan Insurance Premium". The premium, typically 10 to 20 percent of the amount the client wishes to borrow, is sent to an address in Ontario, Canada. Needless to say, the loan never comes through and the funds are never returned.

Legitimate lenders often charge fees for processing, appraisal, etc. but these fees are usually deducted from the loan amount. But honest lenders do not guarantee loan before all investigations are completed, and they do not require up-front payment for this approval. These advance fee loan scams are illegal in both the US and Canada. Below are some signs that the “Lender” is a scammer:

Pressures you to act immediately.
Guarantee loans, even if you have bad credit, no credit or a bankruptcy
Refuses to provide its street address location.
Demands that you wire money, rather than use a credit card or check, before you have a loan offer confirmed in writing.
Written communications contains typos and grammatical errors.
When you telephone, no one is ever "in"; your calls are not returned, or the voicemail box is always "full".

If you think you have fallen prey to lending scam, call your Better Business Bureau to file a complaint.

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