News 12 at 6 o'clock, August 17, 2007
Going through foreclosure can be a nightmare. But that nightmare can only get worse if you're duped into a scam that's disguised as a helping hand.
These companies promise to help save you from foreclosure, but the Better Business Bureau says many of them are just trying to put you deeper in debt than you already are.
Tonya and Alphonsa Reeves have been living with they hope would just be a bad dream.
"She said Mrs. Reeves, are you aware your house is in foreclosure?" Tonya said.
"I couldn't believe that." Alphonsa said.
But believe it they must, because it's true. And that means they had to act fast. They got a flyer in the mail from a company promising to get them out of foreclosure.
We call these guys, they say no problem. They do it all the time." Alphonsa said.
They ended up wiring several hundred dollars. Everything sounded good, and then things took a turn for the worse.
"They would give us the run-around." Tonya said.
So they moved on, the next company was called Stay Home U.S.A. This company promised a 100% guarantee that they too could get them out of foreclosure.
"We were in dire straits." Tonya said.
They made the calls and wired the money. The results were the same. Nothing happened and that means the Reeves and their 4 kids were still in danger of being homeless.
The Better Business Bureau says it is seeing a rise in foreclosure rescue scams. People get false promises of saving their house and making everything ok after paying a lot money they'll never see again.
No one is saying the Reeves are victims of a scam, but what's happened to them is just making their nightmare worse.
"I don't know. We got nowhere to go. 4 kids. It's hard to find somewhere to go. There's no money for a down payment on a house." Alphonsa said.
We did call both companies to try and figure out what happened. Stay Home U.S.A. did not return repeated phone calls. The other company promised an immediate refund and apologized for any misunderstanding.
If you're in foreclosure, contact the better business bureau before paying or signing anything. You can do that by going to http://www.bbb.org