Scott Veerkamp: Deceptive Advertising

In doing some research on the Code of Ethics, I found the following
information listed on the RE/MAX International website: “The REALTOR
you hire adheres to a strict Code of Ethics and professionalism while
protecting ownership of property.” “In the U.S., all of our agents
are members of their local REALTOR board and uphold the associated
strict Code of Ethics.”

Please be advised that I am providing evidence of “Bait and Switch”
advertising on behalf of Scott Veerkamp and his organization. Scott
and his company ran the following advertisement in Christian Phone
Book: “We will do our very best to help you get the lowest interest
rates possible at the lowest possible price.”

Upon review, you will see two examples of “Bait and Switch”
advertising in this message. Please take time to review the following

Example #1: A $4,799 Yield Spread Premium does NOT represent “the
lowest possible interest rate.” Again, I refer you to the Center for
Responsible Lending and their definition of Yield Spread Premium: “A
YSP is a cash bonus that a broker receives from a lender for placing
borrowers in a loan with a HIGHER interest rate than the lender would
accept. The higher the interest rate, the higher the premium received
by the broker.” “The effect of YSP is to steal equity from struggling

Example #2: A $960 application fee does NOT represent the “lowest
possible price.” As discussed earlier, the National Association of
Mortgage Brokers says it is not necessary to pay an application fee.
Therefore, “the lowest possible price” for an application fee is ZERO.

With regard to advertising, the Better Business Bureau defines “Bait
and Switch” in the following manner: “A “bait” offer is an alluring
but insincere offer to sell a product or service which the advertiser
does not intend to sell. Its purpose is to SWITCH consumers from
buying the advertised merchandise or service, in order to sell
something else, usually at a HIGHER price or on a basis more
advantageous to the advertiser.”

After reading this description, it is evident Scott Veerkamp meets all
of the requirements for “Bait and Switch” advertising. Here are 4 key
points to review: 1. Obviously, Scott was not sincere about offering
“the lowest possible interest rate” or “the lowest possible price” to
his clients. 2. He simply used these statements as “bait.” 3. In the
next step, Scott “switches” his clients to Yield Spread Premium and
junk fees. 4. Clearly, these HIGHER fees are more advantageous to the

In doing some additional research on the Code of Ethics, I found the
following information listed on the Metropolitan Indianapolis Board of
Realtors website: 1. “REALTORS shall be careful at all times to
present a true picture in their advertising and their representations
to the public.” 2. “The Code of Ethics is a promise to the public
that when dealing with a real estate agent who is a REALTOR, they can
expect honest and ethical treatment in all transaction- related
matters.” 3. “Only REALTORS pledge to abide by the Code of Ethics,
and only REALTORS are held accountable for their ethical behavior.”

Previously, Scott Veerkamp deliberately misled the public when he
presented the following statement on one of his websites: “As a
Christian business owner, it truly is the desire of my heart to not be
a “Superstar,” but rather a “Super Servant” with the hope of achieving
excellence by keeping the interest of my clients above all else.”

Please note: Yield Spread Premium and Junk Fees represent the extreme
opposite of the statement listed above. In fact, Predatory Lending
puts the public at risk for serious financial harm. Unfortunately,
this is the same public Scott Veerkamp claims to be “Serving.”

This post was submitted by Jim Bruggenschmidt.

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