Homes & Mortgages

Alert for Spanish-speaking victims of a mortgage relief scam

Over the summer, we told you about a mortgage relief scam that defrauded homeowners in financial distress. The case especially affected Spanish-speaking homeowners in Southern California. According to the FTC, Brookstone Law and Advantis Law firms convinced homeowners to make an upfront payment to join a mortgage lawsuit against banks and lenders, supposedly to help them avoid foreclosure, get rid of their mortgages, or get money from their lenders.

Empowering Latinos to know their rights and avoid scams

Hispanic Heritage Month is a time to celebrate the contributions so many Latinos have made throughout history. It’s also a time for us to celebrate you for the vital role you’ve played in helping Latino communities avoid scams.

Hispanic Heritage Month badge

Surviving a flood — Dealing with the aftermath

Once the floodwaters have receded, it’s time to take stock and develop a recovery plan. It can seem overwhelming. Here are a few tips and links to resources to help make the task less burdensome.

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Homes & Mortgages

Exposing a mortgage relief scheme’s empty promises

If you’re struggling to pay your mortgage, you might look for financial relief to help keep the roof over your head. Do you turn to your bank or mortgage lender for help? Maybe you got a mailer promising mortgage relief – via a lawsuit against banks and lenders? If you’ve thought about the last option, watch out for empty promises.

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Homes & Mortgages

Combating Fraud in African-American and Latino Communities

When we say we’re fighting fraud in every community here at the FTC, we mean it. We’re bringing cases and reaching out to diverse segments of the population: servicemembers and veterans, older adults, Asian Americans, Native Americans, the disability community, LGBT individuals and groups – and African American and Latino communities.

Efficient bulbs light the way

When’s the last time you spent your commute in a horse-drawn carriage? Or calculated a bill on an abacus? This Earth Day, we can reflect on another old-tech consumer item that’s falling out of use: old-fashioned, low-efficiency, incandescent light bulbs. New LED and CFL bulbs last much longer and use less energy – which saves you money on your monthly bill.

Want a one-minute refresher about the Lighting Facts label? Here’s our video.

Video about lumens

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Homes & Mortgages

Financial literacy for every generation

April is Financial Literacy Month. And whether you’re a young adult or someone a bit older, the FTC has a library of free consumer materials to help you make the most of your money and avoid costly scams.

The FTC’s best of 2015

Here at the FTC, we spend most of our time working to protect your consumer rights and promote fair competition among companies. We conduct investigations, bring cases, give people tips and advice, help businesses comply with the law, and advocate for consumer-friendly policies around the world.

Every once in a while, we take a moment to measure our impact and consider what we’ve accomplished. That lets us explain our approach to people and companies that want to know, and helps us plan for the future.

In that spirit, today we released the FTC’s Annual Highlights for 2015.

Image of FTC's Annual highlights

Scammers phish for mortgage closing costs

Buying a home is exciting. You saved for the down payment, scheduled the move, and are dreaming of planting new roots. Closing is right around the corner… unless a scammer gets your settlement fees first.

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Homes & Mortgages

Celebrating Women’s History Month at the FTC

The consumer movement, trust-busting, the women’s movement, and the work of the FTC have traveled parallel (and often intersecting) paths. Women’s History Month offers us a chance to consider the contribution women have made to the mission of the FTC and the unprecedented moment in women’s history we’re witnessing at the FTC today.