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Six Tips To Help Companies Mitigate Mortgage Fraud Risk

Apr 8, 2008
Mortgage fraud is one of the fasting growing financial crimes in US history. Techniques to commit mortgage fraud have grown more sophisticated, resulting in more advanced counter techniques to combat mortgage fraud. In 2005 the FBI reported over one billion dollars in property and loans were lost due to mortgage fraud.

Too often the signs of mortgage fraud for profit or mortgage fraud for property are difficult to spot. Many experts agree that the public is ill-informed of potential mortgage fraud scams, making education and documentation efforts even more crucial. The below six steps are basic steps for companies to take to minimize the risk of becoming a victim of mortgage fraud:

1. Be cautious of property brokers insistent that buyers use a specific lender.

2. Ensure you receive copies of signed documents

3. Hire third-party appraisers.

4. Get referrals for mortgage and real estate professionals with an established record.

5. Never sign documents that have missing information.

6. Take advantage of professional services that report on mortgage fraud and collaborate with the federal government.

By investing your time and being diligent, you will mitigate your business's risk of become a victim of mortgage fraud. Protecting against mortgage fraud starts with you. If your instincts make you suspicious, follow them.

Maintain Good Records:

In the early stages of the mortgage loan application process it is important for the consumer to get referred to an established professional. Consumers should remember when asked for a signature, never sign documents that are incomplete. In addition, the consumer should receive a copy of documents that are signed. Maintaining good records of conversations, contact information and documents exchanged is important.

Third-Party Appraisers:

Just like it is important to be cautious of property brokers that are specific of using a particular lender so too can a mortgage fraud risk be found when not using a third-party appraiser. The appraisal process if neglected can leave you vulnerable to become a victim of mortgage fraud. Appraisal fraud is often encountered when flipping properties. In these situations an unscrupulous appraiser appraises the property at a much higher value. At which point the buyer resells the property quickly for a maximum profit. To reduce your vulnerability for appraisal fraud, utilize a third party appraiser that is licensed properly and verify the appraiser's license. Online monitoring systems now exist for appraiser license verification.

Mortgage Fraud Professional Services Reports:

Technology can play a complementary role to your efforts to find potential mortgage fraud patterns. Mortgage database software can also help uncover mortgage fraud patterns. A mortgage fraud report is an example of mortgage database software in action. These reports are professional services reports that can be beneficial for mortgage industry professionals. National mortgage fraud databases can help diligent mortgage industry professionals better protect against the risk of mortgage fraud.

Future Considerations for Mortgage Fraud:

When mortgage fraud occurs it is far reaching and impacts the real estate industry and the overall economy. The above were tips and considerations for current issues within the mortgage fraud industry. What will be the future significance of mortgage fraud, loan fraud, appraisal fraud, mortgage lending fraud, and mortgage database software onto the mortgage and real estate industry?
About the Author
Michelle Thiel is an advocate for the information industry with an interest in mortgage fraud, loan fraud, appraisal fraud, appraiser license verification, and mortgage database software.
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