FBI warns seniors to beware of reverse mortgage scams

The FBI is warning senior citizens to protect themselves with reverse mortgage deals on the sharp increase and the number of scams increasing along with them. Since 1999, reverse mortgages have increased by 1,300%, the FBI said.

Reverse mortgages, also called Home Equity Conversion Mortgages, are intended to allow homeowners over the age of 62 to get equity from their homes without having to make monthly payments. But scam artists have come up with a series of ploys to drain the equity and take the money.

Scammers use churches, seminars and a variety of forms of advertising to target seniors. AARP offers a lot of helpful information about reverse mortgages.