Foreclosure and Tenants Rights
First Baptist Community Development Corp., located in Franklin Township in Somerset County, runs the Housing Assistance & Recovery Program (HARP) and is also approved to provide mediation through the New Jersey Foreclosure Mediation Program. For information, call 732-247-0444, ext. 1016, or go to http://fbcdc.com/FPP/fpp.htm.
For homeowners who simply want help with budgeting or to be educated about how to maintain homeownership in the midst of a difficult economy, SCCOAH offers free housing counseling and homeowner education classes. You can reach them at 908-704-8901 or go to http://sccoah.org.
- What's New: The Somerset County Division of Consumer Protection has brochures available in English and Spanish outlining the N.J. Judiciary's free Foreclosure Mediation Program.
- Foreclosure Fast Facts: A 2-page listing of assistance, numbers to call, and general assistance, including counseling agencies experienced in foreclosure:
- Materials and sources of information on buying a home, mortgage assistance and foreclosure, designed especially for Mayors:
- The NJ HOPE (Home Ownership Preservation Effort) website provides information about resources that are available for homeowners who are delinquent in their mortgage payments, need counseling or have questions:
- The Rights of Tenants During Foreclosure
WARMING TO HOMEOWNERS ON SCAMS
In New Jersey, scammers have sent mailers offering residents a secondary stimulus check from the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Respondents are then asked to call a toll-free number and pressured to buy a kit to purchase foreclosed properties.
Other examples of recent scams include an e-mail message asking for bank-account information so that stimulus funds can be deposited, but instead money is withdrawn from bank accounts; requests to verify information by going to a particular Web site and then malicious software or spyware is downloaded; and deceptive Web sites with images of government officials to make the sites look legitimate. All these methods lure people into providing personal information, thereby possibly subjecting them to identity theft.
Additionally, some sites ask for a minimal sum of money to receive a list of economic stimulus grants. As a result, scammers will either use consumer’s credit-card numbers for personal use or ensnare people into agreements that will cost thousands of dollars if they cancel.
For more information about economic stimulus package scams, visit the Federal Trade Commission Web site at www.ftc.gov/opa/2009/03/stimulusscam.shtm.