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Home > Ask The Get Out of Debt Experts > Modification Review Board Wants to Sell Me Advance Fee Loan Modification Help. – Danielle

Modification Review Board Wants to Sell Me Advance Fee Loan Modification Help. – Danielle

“Dear Steve,

I have been looking into the Making Home Affordable Program. I found some companies offering assistance and asked for call backs. I have also been reading some of what they are allowed to do, not do, offer or not offer.

I got a call back today from “the Modification Review Board.” I am writing you tonight after seeing some activity on your site about this company as well as ” Preferred Law of Sandy Utah,” and felt I should write you.

I haven’t been scammed by them, but I think they tried.

According to the Federal Trade Commission’s Mortgage Assistance Relief Services Rule, “makes it illegal for companies to collect any fees until a homeowner has actually received an offer of relief from his or her lender and accepted it. That means even if you agree to have a company help you, you don’t have to pay until it gets you the result you want.” From what I read their is an exclusion…. Attorney’s supplying the relief.

This brings me to the Modification Review Board. When I spoke to them, I asked them about fee’s. They told me it was $3,900. Installments of $600. I asked her if that was put in an escrow account. NO. I asked her about the new Rule about taking money and she said that the Modification Review Board was a non profit and it was the Preferred Law’s legal fee’s I would be paying. They were the Atty’s on the case and the Mod Review Board are the ones drawing up the paperwork….

They told me what my payments would be, not to make my mortgage payments because they would protect me by filing the paperwork preventing them from penalizing me or contacting me during the process. Their were only 2 scenario’s. Worst being my Interest rate would be 3.5%, the best scenario would be 2%.

She wanted to send me some paperwork, so I gave her my work email address, which happens to be at the State’s Superior Court Criminal Division. LOL I got a short application to fill out and about thirty pages of other peoples letters (first names blacked out) and;approval letters. The funny thing is, none of them had any information about Preferred Law or Mod Rev Board.

They promised a lot, gave a lot of bad advise and I just thought I’d like to share what they had to say. The Federal Trade Commission gives a lot of good advise and also explains the new Rule regarding “Non Attorney’s” and the payment process.

I guess the one question I would have is, am I reading the exclusions properly and is it ok to give literal Atty’s money up front when trying to get assistance with the Making Home Affordable Programs? I plan to look in my town or better yet ask an Atty at work who they would recommend! Heck with this internet relief searches

Thanks, I’m glad I found you tonight!


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Dear Danielle,

Before you pay anyone for help you should investigate the free mortgage assistance that is available through a HUD Housing Counselor. There counselors are compensated by the government and their services are free. in fact that’s the same advice the Making Home Affordable program offers as well. – Source

If Modification Review Board didn’t share that with you as well, makes me wonder why.

Before you sign on the line with Modification Review Board I’d ask them to put their refund policy in writing and to share with you official statistics on their success rates. What they sent you in no way represents their actual performance.

You can also use the links below.

Mortgage Help

Be sure to first read How Not to Get Scammed by a Mortgage Loan Modification Company.

Debt-to-Income Calculator

First you’ll need to determine your current debt-to-income ratio. The target debt-to-income ratio under the Home Affordable Modification program is 31%. Use this free online DTI calculator.

Mortgage Modification Calculator

The mortgage modification eligibility calculator will ask you several questions and then show you which programs you may be eligible for.

The free mortgage modification calculator can be found here.

Free Mortgage Modification Help and Counseling

If you have questions about the process or eligibility you can call 888-995-4673 and get connected with an mortgage modification adviser for free. This help is provided by government subsidized HUD Housing Counselors and they can be a big help in navigating the modification process.

In order to assist you, the housing expert will need to gather some information from you. Have the following documents handy:

  • Information about your first mortgage, such as your monthly mortgage statement.
  • Information about any second mortgage or home equity line of credit on the house.
  • Information about the monthly gross (before tax) income of all household members contributing to pay the mortgage, including recent pay stubs if you receive them or documentation of income you receive from other sources.
  • Information about your savings and other assets.
  • Account balances and minimum monthly payments due on all of your credit cards.
  • Account balances and monthly payments on all your other debts such as student loans and car loans.
  • Your most recent income tax return.
  • It may also be helpful to have: A letter describing any circumstances that caused your income to be reduced or expenses to be increased (job loss, divorce, illness, etc.), if applicable.

You can also get free help and housing counseling from a local HUD approved counselor. You can find your local free housing counselor, here.

Contact Your Mortgage Company

Not sure if your mortgage company offers modification programs? Not all do. You can contact your mortgage company to ask them about mortgage modification programs you might be eligible for. Click here to find your mortgage company.

NPV Calculator

Want to know the net present value (NPV) of your home for the mortgage modification process? No problem, use the free NPV calculator to find out. The NPV calculator is right here.

The calculator can be used by homeowners who have been denied a HAMP modification because of their NPV result or can also be used by homeowners prior to applying for a HAMP modification to help them better understand the NPV evaluation.

No Advance Fees

The Federal Trade Commission has a Mortgage Assistance Relief Services Rule which prohibits advance fees for mortgage rescue services or mortgage modification help.

Please post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.

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About Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode
Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
  • Mary

    Congratulation to you Danielle for not getting scammed!

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