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Showing 1-10 of 23 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 67 reviews
on November 20, 2009
As a small businessman and even smaller real estate investor,a licensed R.E.Broker and General Contractor,I wholeheartedly recommend Homebuyers Beware to all home buyers,first timers and seasoned investors alike.

I read Carolyn Warren's first book,Mortgage Rip-Offs,a few months ago and liked it so much I contacted her for consultation re:refinancing of my properties.Eventhough I bought my first home over 30 years ago and many since,I must confess I know NOTHING about yield spread premium and the way brokers/lenders use YSP to add income to themself before reading that book.The YSP information alone was worth thousand times the cost of the book(approx.$13 from AMAZON.COM)because I know absolutely, definitely that the brokers' additional income must come only from one source : borrowers like you and me.

There were other important information for ALL mortgage seekers in the first book :how to negotiate for lower fees and rates,whether to pay point,how and what to do with junk fees etc.All those and more were explained and clarified further in Carolyn's second book,Homebuyers Beware.

In her new book,Carolyn takes her readers to the real estate mortgage market situation today.This is most important due to the fact that rules for qualifying for new and refi mortgages changed substantially in the last 2 years it's like we're looking at 2 different creatures altogather :

---no more easy no loan docs. loan,no more easy qualifying loans
---good credit is a must.So are substantial down payment required in most cases
---W-2,income tax returns and bank staments are all standard required docs.
---etc.,etc

Carolyn explained all of the above in practical details,with intended benefit for the consumers.Even for readers who've no credit,with bankruptcy/shortsale in their credit report or who want to repudiate bad info. in his/her credit files.The book is,like her first book,very easy to read and full of helpfull pointers that can be used to save unnecessary fees/chrges made by lenders/brokers.

This book will save you many,many times the price you pay for it.
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on July 5, 2012
The mortgage business has always been a black box to me. I know money is being made, and I am OK with that. But, I am NOT OK with egregious sums based on dishonest practices. I have always been suspicious of the industry as it has historically not been transparent. I have a few investment properties and believe I have been cheated in the past in spite of reading a few books on the topic and having good credit. In preparation for my latest real estate purchase, I decided to really get to the heart of understanding of how this business works.

I stumbled upon Mortgage Rip-Offs and Money Savers on Amazon. I read through it in a couple of days, and it was awesome! This book gives you an inside look into the mortgage industry and all the tricks of the trade. Importantly, Carolyn provides readers a road map for the process and an understanding of all the jargon, so loan officers know they're working with someone who understands their business. After Mortgage Rip-Offs, I found out that she wrote Homebuyers Beware. I got that immediately and read that in a day. This book explains yield spread premium in greater detail so you can understand the nuances better. I highly recommend reading both books. I also recommend using her GFE review service. Go to[...]. I spent $55 and 30 min on the phone with her today to review 3 GFEs, and she gave me great advice. Read these books, and you'll have confidence when dealing with loan officers and will likely save yourself a bunch of money in the process!
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on January 18, 2013
This book is so good! I must have read this book and the other book she wrote (mortgage rip offs) about 3 times before I actually went to buy a home... I also had a consult with her which was the utmost helpful... I recommend that you read her books and then go to her website ask carolyn warren.com and then get a consult with her... she was so nice and helpful... and she really helped me to sleep at night.. because I knew that I was getting a good deal and not being swindled...
She took her time with me and explained it all... I felt so nervous talking to her on the phone because I read both her books and to get to talk to her... was really coo!! I was star struck! I am a big fan of hers for many years and I think she is just a wonderful author and person!
Can't wait for her to write another book... as her books are page turners! You will learn a lot if you don't know anything about loans... This book will teach you...!
I am a first time homebuyer.. and while much of the loan process is confusing... this book will make sense of it... but read the books and then have a consult with her... it is truly an all encompassing experience!
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on April 4, 2011
I am such a big, big fun of Ms Carolyn Warren. I just finished reading this book, and I can now confidently say that I feel more comfortable with the idea and process of homeownership. I purchased and read her first book (Mortgage Rip-Offs) out of pure positive serendipity, while looking for something else here on Amazon. Essentially, I knew absolutely zero about homeownership, mortgages or real estate. Inability to relate, confusing calculated procedures, speculative propensity, a multitude of Rip-off stories in the news, all of this simply discouraged me from even paying much attention to this field. So I avoided anything to do with it.

Carolyn generosity in deciding to commit this salutary information to published paper has helped lift the mystery for me. I now have developed a serious understanding of the idea of homeownership. Particularly the right steps to take to avoid being taken advantage of.
I unrestrictedly recommend Homebuyers Beware to all home buyers, novice first timers or seasoned investors. I have never bought a home but I feel like I can do it now, thanks to the wisdom acquired from Carolyn. I wrote her an Email to relate my appreciation to her for this great service to us all.

Every page has powerful nuggets of knowledge that I was chronically naive about, but I came away with Four major light-bulbs out of this book:

1) The right way to take care of my/your Credit Score & ID integrity prior to thinking about purchasing a home (Chap. 01 thru 07.)

2) Develop a keen step-by-step knowledge of the buying process & the difference between the major actors i.e. Brokers, Bankers, Lenders, securitization, the folly of procrastination... (Chapter 08 thru 10.)

3) Develop a visceral understanding of what a Good Faith Estimate is, navigating the fees puzzle-work, how/when to shop around for the right GFE, and how to make the final determination as to which one would be the best GFE for my/your circumstances.
(Chapter 11-14)

4) What is a YSP? (Well, buy this fabulous book, and read it).Trust me, this nugget alone and the GFE(s), are worth your decision, time, and will ultimately pay for the book many times over, should you get out there to hunt for a Home. (Chapter 15 thru the End.)

Finally, Ms Carolyn Warren, should you happen to read this review, let me simply say thank you again from the bottom of my heart. More people like you around would make the word a whale of a lot more fun and trustworthy.
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on December 29, 2010
You and I need a tax expert to "walk us" through the mine field of terms in trying to explain and decipher the myriad of new laws and to help us in saving money on our taxes. Similarly, we need some one who tells us the truth (some times without sugar coating) about the process and pit falls of getting a mortgage. One thing to note here is that it is not "information" that is missing for most of us but what is missing is an unbiased but experienced person (mentor) who is qualified to give out the advice. If your idea is to bank on someone else's experience to get further, buying her book would be a great investment.

I read Carolyn Warren's first book,Mortgage Rip-Offs,a few months ago and liked it. It introduced me to the world of mortgages. This book walked me through the process of pre-qualification, how to filter out the bad lenders from the good ones, pre-approval and finally getting and closing the loan... but what was missing was the most up-to-date information and it appeared as if she heard my inner thoughts.. she decided to update the information in her 2nd book but that does not mean that the first one is not needed any more.. but the first one actually lays a very good foundation for a mortgage novice like me.

I bought her 2nd book "Homebuyers Beware: Who's Ripping You Off Now?--What You Must Know About the New Rules of Mortgage and Credit" and this one can easily be regarded as the "Bible" for first time mortgage seekers. I would be completely in dark of the new mortgage lending rules but for this book. Do yourself a favor and buy both the books. You will thank your luck that you stumbled upon this book and it's earlier version. Good luck.

I want to thank Carolyn for referring me to a realtor in the place where I live.. I am currently working with this realtor and she is a great human being.
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on August 22, 2013
We first purchased the Homebuyers Beware & Mortgage Ripoffs set years ago when we decided to start saving for a down payment on our first home. After reading the books we felt the strong urge to share it with friends who then passed along to their friends; they loved the books! Fast forward years later we finally accumulated enough for a down payment but we knew we couldn't do this alone. We bought Carolyn's Homebuyers Beware e-book for $9.99 it just saved us from a $30K mistake! Read the book and contact Carolyn directly and use the service she provides. You can't have too many people in your corner when there are $$$ involved. Carolyn is very professional and has amazing response times via email. Highly recommended.
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on September 21, 2010
Good book so far, but mainly wanted to warn people that the seller is selling just the introduction and the first chapter for $2.39. I was surprised at the price, thinking it was for the whole book, and clicked on it away. My mistake. The book stops at the end of page 19, at the end of the first chapter. Amazon was gracious enough to quickly give a refund, so that I could buy the whole book. However, this practice doesn't make sense to me. Who sells their introduction and their first chapter for 25% (including tax) of the price of the book, and especially when there is a free kindle download of the introduction? You're paying 25% of the price of the book for pages 7-19, which comes out to around 5% of the book. It's like watching 5 minutes of a movie and paying $2.50 on a movie ticket priced at $10. What is the seller thinking?
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on January 21, 2011
We were in the process of moving to CA and needed to sell our home in TX and buy another in CA. Even though this wasn't going to be our first time buying a home, it was going to be a whole different world with what just happened with the real estate market. I am so glad I bought this book! I bought the Kindle version and finished it in 1 night. The next day I made my husband read it too. It is so full of information. She spells out all the tricks (used by unscrupulous brokers) and tips (to help you save time and money).

I contacted Carolyn Warren several times to ask her questions and each time she has been gracious and prompt with her responses. She is truly a homebuyer's advocate. I would recommend her book to anyone (first or second time buyer)who is thinking about buying or refinancing a home because the market is changing and you will need to know what the insiders know.
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on March 5, 2010
I bought this book together with Mortgage Rip-Offs and Money Savers. We are going to be buying our first home in June and knew nothing at all about the process. The book contains information and explanations that I didn't expect to see - for example the section on why you need Agent Representation. I'd never even heard of a buyer's agent before this, and it made me realize just how silly it is to call the realtor listed on a For Sale sign! The book is also very up to date and therefore addresses some of the issues that have cropped up recently in the mortgage industry.

I even emailed Ms. Warren to ask a question about married couples having different credit scores, and she answered me within 6 hours! She is very helpful and sincere.

I have little doubt that I would have been fleeced but good without reading this book. Having read it, I feel that I am properly educated and armed for when we go house-hunting. I'd recommend this book to anyone planning a home purchase or refinance.
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on August 21, 2012
The author does a great job of educating the reader in mortgage fundmentals: how they work, the different types, and tradeoffs between them. She outlines exactly how to acquire the best loan possible by adopting her approach to mortgage shopping. Part of getting the best loan is improving your credit score. She provides tips to improve your score so you can position yoursef to get a great deal. The book is very informative, but it can't cover every situation. When I emailed her (her web page is in the book), not only did she go out of her way to answer my quesions, she was very responsive and helpful.
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