Weatherford Democrat

Viewpoints

December 3, 2012

COLUMN: Veteran's Corner

— As more veterans begin to purchase new homes, an alarming trend by mortgage lenders and brokers continue, as they take unfair advantage of veterans with misleading advertisements.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in partnership with the Federal Trade Commission is issuing warning letters to approximately a dozen lenders and brokers advising them to clean up these misleading advertisements. The CFPB has begun formal investigations of six companies that have committed more serious violations of the law. The CFPB and FTC share enforcement authority and are particularly focused on ads targeting older Americans and veterans.

Actions stem from a joint “sweep,” a review conducted by the CFPB and the FTC of about 800 randomly selected mortgage related ads across the country, including ads for mortgage loans, refinancing and reverse mortgages. The agencies looked at public facing ads in newspapers, on the Internet and from mail solicitations. The CFPB is looking for potential violations of the 2011 Mortgage and Practices Advertising Rule, which prohibits claims that mislead in regards to interest rates, fees, costs, loan payments and the amount of cash or credit available to the veteran.

The FTC, meanwhile, is examining ads by home builders, realtors  and lead generators. The FTC is issuing its own warning letters to about a dozen companies and continuing with its own investigations of even more companies. A copy of the FTC’s press release is available at www.ftc.gov/opa/index.shtml.

The “sweep” identified problems such as misrepresentation about government affiliations, by using official looking seals, logos, or having characteristics that may be interpreted as indicating a government affiliation. Some ads promote low rates that mislead veterans about the terms of the loan. Also, reverse mortgage claims, that a veteran will have no payments, even though with a reverse mortgage loan, they must make monthly or other periodic tax or insurance payments or risk default if the payment isn’t made.   

These warning letters being sent, are advising veterans that the identified lenders may be violating federal laws and that they should carefully review all the information. Warning letters from the CFPB to veterans and servicemembers can be found at http://files.consumerfinance.gov/f/201211_cfpb_generic_warning_letter_veterans.pdf. Taking a little time and carefully investigating your options will help avoid this dilemma.

Hope everyone enjoyed a bountiful Thanksgiving with loved ones.

AMVETS welcomes new members, Zack McClary, Mike Brown, Doc Roberts, Melody Gersbach, Delores diPritore, Kent Olson, Earl Bryan, James Sain, Dennis Robertson, John Cox, John Bob Waldrup, Matt James, Ronnie Walker, Mary Devitt, Stephen Bessent, Robin Dempsey, Sandra Banks and Wesley Banks, all joining Veterans Day weekend.

Reach Jim Vines at jim.helpingveterans@gmail.com.

1
Text Only
Viewpoints
  • 0912 one bday wm j kelly 2013 mug.jpg KELLY: What do you think?

    Not much is known about this Joseph’s life. The one thing I know for sure is that he was a very brave man.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hamilton, Lee.jpg HAMILTON: Government as innovator? You bet!

    Five years ago, the federal government spent $169 billion to fund basic research and development. This fiscal year, it’s down to $134 billion.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Showing respect

    My sister Robbie Benton’s funeral was Friday afternoon at White’s Funeral Home. The gravesite was outside of Mineral Wells. The respect shown by the good folks of Parker County and the surrounding area was overwhelming.

    April 17, 2014

  • larry jones cropped:color NOW HEAR THIS: Going on a wild goose chase

    In recent years I’ve written quite a bit about the introduction and negative consequences of non-native or invasive species. Fire ants, killer bees, English sparrows, Asian carp, feral hogs and others too numerous to list have forever changed our local ecosystem.

    April 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: TV offers

    Have you seen those TV offers where they give a price for one product and then offer a second like items for-free? All you have to do is pay a separate shipping and handling charge for the “free” items.

    April 13, 2014

  • John Paul Carter-color.jpg NOTES FROM THE JOURNEY: What’s in a name?

    Names are important. When my son, Rush, (who’s named after my father) and his wife, Vanessa, were expecting their third daughter, I gave up on having a male namesake and suggested, in jest, they call her “Johnnie Pauline.”

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • tiscione, lou.jpg TISCIONE: The Christian and the government

    The church in the Old Testament lived under a theocracy. That is, both the church and state were one. God anointed kings. Civil laws and religious laws were one and the same.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • larry jones cropped:color NOW HEAR THIS: Getting in the chicken business

    Anyone who is my age or older has heard the famous quote, “A chicken in every pot.” It is normally attributed to Herbert Hoover during his 1928 presidential bid.

    April 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • VIEWPOINT: Obsessed with sports

    I remember reading a synopsis of the five reasons for the “Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire” by Edward Gibbon in which he listed the Romans’ obsession with sports at the coliseum as a cause of the fall of the empire.

    April 6, 2014

  • 0912 one bday wm j kelly 2013 mug.jpg KELLY: What do you think?

    On March 21, this paper published an article about a six-month drug trafficking investigation involving 12 people. On the front page was a photo of the 12 people involved. The use of drugs had made them a sorry-looking bunch. The look in their eyes was particularly disturbing.

    April 4, 2014 1 Photo

Must Read
Top News
House Ads
AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case