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NO SECURITY. You thought it was secured, but you find out it was not. Buy title insurance or insist that existing title insurance be assigned.

DEFECTIVE MORTGAGE. The husband and wife owned the property, but only the husband signed the mortgage. Solution: Buy Title Insurance and review the deed and mortgage before you buy.

FAKE NOTE. Does this person really exist? Find out who is supposed to be paying on the note and talk to them before you buy the note.

ALTERED APPRAISAL. It turns out that they changed the appraisal number and there is no equity in the property to support the loan. Ask for an independent verification or review.

ILLEGAL LOAN. The loan violates local usury rules to a homeowner. Look for disclosure statement and representations that the loan was legally originated.

UNENFORCEABLE DOCUMENTS.  Because a key phrase is missing, if you enforce the note, the borrower can get all of his or her money back. Learn the business procedure and documents, or have your documents reviewed by a specialist.

NO ATTORNEY’S FEES OR COLLECTION COSTS. The note fails to state that you get attorney’s fees and collection costs if you have to enforce it. Review notes for other key phrases, e.g. late payment fee, due-on-sale, etc.

NO ASSETS. It turns out that your borrowers have no assets or their assets are protected from you. Get a verified financial statement and ask the borrowers in detail about assets. Otherwise, just rely on your security.

SUPERIOR LIENS UNPAID. You have good security, but get wiped out by a foreclosure of the senior note holder. Have a law passed that requires subordinate lien notification in the event of foreclosure, such as the request for notice of default in California.

UNDISCLOSED PRIOR LOAN. You thought you had a first mortgage, but you actually have a second. Get title insurance and representation from the borrower and note seller.

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