Behind on your mortgage? Avoid so-called rescue scams. Free help is available right here in Westchester

July 21, 2009

WHITE PLAINS: As foreclosure proceedings continue to be filed in growing numbers across the nation, Westchester County has not escaped the foreclosure crisis.  “Local homeowners are struggling with mortgage payments,” stated Westchester County Clerk Timothy C. Idoni who oversees the office where foreclosure actions are filed. 

“Homeowners became hopeful when they heard that federal stimulus funds were available to address the foreclosure crisis,” shared Idoni.  “And scam artists have taken advantage of that hope and our local homeowners.” 

Idoni offers the following advice to homeowners who are behind on their mortgage payments:

Don’t believe anyone claiming they can save your home with promises of “rescue” loan modifications and refinancing in exchange for a fee upfront.

Don’t be fooled by “official looking” mailings addressed to you that may have information about your particular mortgage loan and claim that you have been pre-approved for a modification.  

Beware of anyone trying to convince you to sign or transfer over the deed to your home. 

Never make a mortgage payment to anyone other than your lender or mortgage company without their approval.

Homeowners in Westchester County don’t have to look far to get help.  Seek assistance from your lender or a free HUD-approved housing counselor such as Westchester Residential Opportunities (WRO), a non-profit housing agency with offices in White Plains and Mount Vernon. Call a trained counselor at 428-4507 or visit to see how they can help.

The Office of the Westchester County Clerk is located at 110 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in White Plains and is open between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays.  For more information, call 995-3070 or visit our website