Mortgage fraud: FBI says home-loan scams still widespread

WHAT: The FBI’s annual report on mortgage fraud said that even in today’s depressed housing market, fraudulent home financing remains prevalent, with perpetrators motivated by high profits and little risk of getting caught.

WHO: The crimes are committed by licensed and unlicensed brokers, loan officers, real estate agents, appraisers and other insiders using their expertise to exploit market loopholes. Organized crime groups are also involved.

HOW: Common schemes involve falsifying financial information to qualify ineligible homebuyers. Dishonest appraisals are used for selling homes at excessive prices. Get-rich-quick scams sell investors unprofitable property.

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