Jul 20, 2012 8:00 PM
TUCSON - If you've been tempted to get help with lowering your mortgage rate we have an important message.
The News 4 Tucson Investigators teamed up with the Better Business Bureau of Southern Arizona for a consumer alert which could impact you just like it did another homeowner who's now out $1,600.
"I wrote them a check and the next day I brought them the rest of the money," says Rosario Davenport."
Rosario shelled out $1,600 for help in getting her mortgage lowered to a more manageable amount. The BBB got several complaints about the same, company which changed names at least once, Rosario contacted; La Placita Multi Services and La Plaz Source LLC.
"Basically they're taking people that are behind on their mortgages, in danger of losing their house and they're telling them they can help save their house," says Nick LaFleur with the B.B.B.
After several months, Rosario saw no change in her mortgage payment. She started making calls but tells us all she got was the run around. Then Rosario paid the company a visit.
"Because they had copies of income tax and everything and I just wanted back. When I went there it was closed."
The Investigators also checked these locations at 22nd St. near Alvernon and Broadway near Campbell. Both locations were vacant. We made several phone calls to every number associated with the two companies. Those numbers are no longer in service
Charging an upfront fee is against the law but some companies find a way around that.
"Basically what they're doing is saying is the upfront fee is actually for a software package which is a clever way a lot of loan modifiers get around that," explains LaFleur.
LaFleur says companies like this thrive on people's anxiety. It's important to never pay upfront fees for loan modification. Also never divert your mortgage payment to a company that isn't the legit holder of the loan.