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WASHINGTON-A Spanish-language version of a brochure alerting consumer to potential borrowing pitfalls is now available from the federal Interagency Task Force on Fair Lending, which includes NCUA. Utilizar su hogar como garanta para un prstamo es arriesgado (Putting Your Home on the Loan Line Is Risky Business) explains the importance of shopping around for interest rates, points and fees on a loan and provides tips for getting the best possible financing. Borrowing from an unscrupulous lender, particularly one offering high-cost loans using the home as collateral, could cause the borrower to lose their home and money. These predatory lenders tend to target homeowners, including the elderly, with low incomes or credit problems through deception or by giving them loans they cannot repay. Prior to signing a contract, the brochure urges consumers to: * Think about their financing options * Do their homework * Think twice before they sign a loan contract * Know that they have rights under the law The brochure stated that housing counseling or social service programs may be available to many consumers as an alternative. It also includes a shopping checklist. The brochure explains that consumers have three days to cancel, in writing, a refinancing, second mortgage, or other loan with the home as security, without penalty. If the period has expired but the consumer feels they have been misled, it recommends calling the state or local bar association, consumer protection agency, or fair housing or housing counseling agency. The Interagency Task Force includes NCUA, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Department of Justice, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Federal Housing Finance Board, Federal Reserve Board, Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, and Office of Thrift Supervision.

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