Last month, title insurance companies in Florida were challenged to safeguard against potential mortgage fraud, as counterfeit Bank of America short sale approval letters were being issued to soon-to-be homebuyers across the state. The forged letters used the bank’s logo as well as language comparable to what the company normally issues in its statements and notices; the scam resulted in an estimated $10 million in losses.
Bank of America responded quickly, however, and title insurance companies cooperated, verifying letters by calling an automated number. The bank was willing and amenable to confirming approval letters, following the motto “it’s better to be safe than sorry.”
The fraudulent activity caused homebuyers to purchase properties they mistakenly thought had clear titles, but in reality were devalued and subject to high-cost liens.
In order to prevent similar embezzlement, real estate agents, title companies, and owners are encouraged to follow through with the negotiator in order to verify that the approval letter is authentic.
At Colony Title, we go above and beyond our customers’ expectations in conducting thorough title searches and securing title insurance. To prohibit against fraud when closing on your home – whether you’re looking into purchasing a foreclosure or otherwise – contact the experts at Colony Title Group. Our team will offer you peace of mind and ensure avoidance of title defects and costly claims.
About Colony Title Associates:
Founded in 1995, Colony Title Group handles in excess of 2000 real estate closings per year in the central Maryland area. The founder Tee Tillman has over 23 years experience in the title and real estate law fields. Colony handles closings for several lenders, including banks, credit unions and mortgage brokers. Colony is the preferred choice for many real estate brokers in the area.