Loan Modification Scam
Also Doing Business As:
- Federal Counseling
August 15, 2014
The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) has received a complaint from a Washington State housing counselor whose clients are being barraged with calls by salespeople from “Federal Marketplace” in Washington, DC offering unrealistic loan modification terms. The company, which is not registered with the National Mortgage Licensing System (NMLS), was advertising on its website that it provides the lowest interest rates and was endorsed by both Consumer Reports and the Ellen DeGeneres Show. All of those claims are false.
The company is not licensed by the Department of Financial Institutions as a Mortgage Broker or Consumer Loan company, and is registered with the Washington Secretary of State, Department of Revenue or Washington Business Licensing Service. The company failed to respond to the Department’s requests for information about their services, and appears to be a completely fraudulent operation.
DFI strongly recommends that consumers deal only with those lenders that are properly licensed to conduct business. Consumers can determine whether lenders are properly licensed using the “Verify a License” feature on the DFI’s website at www.dfi.wa.gov/consumers/findcompany.htm.
Washington State Residents – If you are a Washington resident and dealt with Federal Mortgage Marketplace, or are suspicious of unlicensed activity by another lender, please contact the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions at 1-877-RING-DFI (746-4334), or online at www.dfi.wa.gov.
If you are a resident of another state, find the regulator in your home state.
If you feel you have been the victim of a loan scam please also contact the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-FTC-HELP (382-4357) or online at www.ftc.gov; or contact the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (855) 411-CFPB or online at www.consumerfinance.gov. Because the scammers may have access to bank account information and social security numbers, victims should consider themselves victims of identity theft and take appropriate precautions. The Federal Trade Commission has information for victims of identity theft available online at www.ftc.gov.
If you feel you have been the victim of a loan scam involving the Internet please also contact the Internet Crime Complaint Center online at www.ic3.gov.
If you feel you have been the victim of a loan scam and are concerned about your personal financial information, contact your banking institution, and the three major credit bureaus.