When you need money, all quick options may seem good and some sweet incentives get offered. But you might want to ask if you should borrow from these lenders who appear a list of subpoenas issued by New York State’s Financial Services Department (DFS)
Benjamin M. Lawsky, Superintendent of Financial Services, launched an investigation into possible predatory lending practices by companies that offer short-term, high-interest loans.
Borrowers generally secure these loans with a home or other real estate. The industry calls the practice hard money lending and often the lenders will give you the money without checking whether you can repay, or the likelihood that you may default.
The DFS investigation wants to find out if some lenders intentionally structure loans so that people default. When that happens, the lender ends up with the property.
Lawsky said, “While many hard money lenders may be engaged in legitimate financial activities, certain unscrupulous companies appear to be taking advantage of borrowers in tough financial straits by making loans that are designed to fail. Preying on consumers who are in distress is unacceptable in any form, but these types of ‘loan to own’ schemes are simply unconscionable. We will vigorously investigate any lender that is trying to push a borrower over the foreclosure cliff.”
The DFS investigation aims to find out if companies structure hard money loans with high interest rates, upfront fees, and enormous balloon payments at the end of the loan’s term—so that borrowers are driven into default.
Some borrowers complained that the lender required them to sign a deed in lieu of foreclosure at loan origination. That allows the lender to skirt the foreclosure process and take possession of the property as soon as you miss a single payment.
DFS subpoenaed nine companies and points out that, “A subpoena is a demand for documents and is not itself an indication of specific wrongdoing within a particular company.”
- Alston Ferris Capital Partners (New York City)
- IAS Group, LLC (Nassau County)
- Liberty Lending Group (Suffolk County)
- Manitoli LLC (Putnam County)
- Mercier Realty, Inc. (Monroe County)
- Meritt Funding, Inc. (Westchester County)
- PMG Lending Group (Erie County)
- Quick Funding, LLC (Nassau County)
- Rushmore Capital Partners (New York City)
The DFS wants additional information about your experiences. If a hard lender victimized you, contact the Department of Financial Services at (800) 342-3736 or online at http://www.dfs.ny.gov/consumer/fileacomplaint.htm.
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