The current mortgage crisis has particularly hurt many homeowners in southern California and the Coachella Valley. Loan defaults and foreclosures are at record levels. This has had serious impact on many aspects of the local economy. Many homeowners need advice or counseling on how to analyze their own situation and the best strategy to deal with banks or mortgage companies when they fall behind on mortgage payments. At the same time, there are a number of predatory con-artists targeting desperate homeowners (especially in California, Nevada and Arizona) in an effort to get money. Homeowners often get unsolicited calls or respond to advertisements that offer to solve their mortgage problems for an up-front fee. Some of these even use the name of a respected or legitimate local organization to gain the person’s trust. Owners should be very cautious before giving money to anyone offering to “resolve your mortgage problems”, “lower your mortgage payments” or “save your home”.
In an effort to protect homeowners from fraud by these con-artists a number of non-profit organizations have been established to help troubled owners to understand their position and how to best deal with their mortgage holder. The situation is too complex to address every potential situation or every potential alternative here, but these are some of the legitimate non-profit groups that can give advice or assist you.
Homeownership Education Learning Program (HELP)
Fair Housing Council of Riverside County Inc (has assistance advisors to help deal with mortgage foreclosures or short sales).
Coachella Valley Housing Coalition (non-profit credit and foreclosure counseling)