With the arrival of summertime comes a flock of financial flim-flammers and Iowans need to be on-guard whenever they open the mail, open the door or pick up the phone. Becky Rogers-Neese, a vice president of Valley Bank in Davenport, says scams range from home refinancing to car loans to window replacement. Rogers-Neese says go to more than one lender and compare rates and programs to make an informed decision before signing anything. She says predatory lending is any loan that carries exorbitant interest rates or illegal restrictions. The best defense, Rogers-Neese says, is educating yourself prior to signing a contract.Other suggestions include: read between the lines and read all of the fine print. Check references. Check with the Better Business Bureau. Rogers-Neese says when in doubt about something, ask.She says if you have signed a contract where your home is offered as security, you may change your mind and rescind the agreement within three days of signing. Also, if you feel you’ve been a victim of predatory lending, let others know. Contact the Iowa Attorney General’s Office, the Federal Trade Commission, Better Business Bureau and others to report being ripped off.
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