A Personal Finance Blog for Malaysian: Mortgage Scams All Malaysians Need To Be Aware Of

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Mortgage Scams All Malaysians Need To Be Aware Of

Buying a property and securing a mortgage is one of the biggest things you’ll ever do. House prices in Malaysia are 4.4 times the median income of a Malaysian family, meaning many are securing high mortgages in order to get on the property ladder. Therefore, the last thing you want to be hit by as you’re preparing for one of the happiest times in your life is a mortgage scam. So, whether you’re purchasing home insurance online, shopping for furniture or checking your emails, it’s important to be aware of scammers trying to target you and your future home. 

Common mortgage scams

Malaysians under 30 years of age are most at risk of falling foul to an online scam, therefore it’s vital to be on your guard when applying for a mortgage.Land scams are on the risein Malaysia, so if you’re purchasing a property with adjoining land make sure that everything is above board and has an individual grant, otherwise, you could find yourself in trouble with your mortgage lender.

You’d expect lawyers to be trustworthy citizens, however they can - and do - commit fraud. A local lawyer is currently under investigation for manipulating sale prices and purchase agreements on loan agreement paperwork. He is believed to have kept the money loaned and to have told his clients their loans had been declined. This further facilitates the need for borrowers to be cautious of all those they have dealings with when purchasing a mortgage and to check everyone out as thoroughly as they can.

Case study

In one local fraudulent case, the scammer acted as a freelance real estate agent and gained the trust of a newly appointed Bank of Arendelle panel member. The fraudster convinced his victim that she was better off if he delivered and collected all her mortgage paperwork. However, the paperwork was fraudulent. The end result of the scam was the purchaser defaulted on the loan sum.

Reverse mortgage scams
It’s not just youngsters who are at risk of mortgage fraud either. Reverse mortgages were introduced to benefit the ageing population, however, scammers have used this type of mortgage to their advantage to fleece the elderly out of the money and even their homes. Some of the most common reverse mortgage scams include fraudsters selling seniors products they don’t require or want and deceiving those whose homes are at risk of foreclosure.

Mortgage fraud is just one of the many types of fraud that Malaysians need to keep an eye out for. However, due to the nature of the crimes, the money involved and the possible implications, it’s one type of fraud which often hits harder than most.

Guest Post by
Chrissy Jones

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