Home owners experiencing mortgage stress should be wary of a new breed of online entrepreneurs who are offering quick money for homes.

For instance, Express Homebuyers, advertises on its website for houses where owners are behind in repayments, facing repossession, or need debt relief. It offers online quotes and promises owners the sales take “days, not months”. The proceeds, it says, are “free” of the selling fees normally paid to real-estate agents.

But the federal Government is concerned the new trend could lead to sharks exploiting vulnerable homeowners who are under pressure, resulting in sales at below market value.

Clearly, such organizations are targeting the most vulnerable – people struggling to make ends meet. Their website targets people behind in their repayments, people who have lost jobs and people getting a divorce.

Express Homebuyers even go one step further offering $1000 for tip-offs on potential sales.

Marquette Turner advise anyone who is struggling to first contact their mortgage provider or speak with not-for-profit advisory organizations.

Express Homebuyers carries the same name as a US company that operates a similar scheme and has profited from the meltdown in the American housing market resulting from the sub-prime mortgage crisis.

It says it acts on behalf of a network of private investors and is seeking homes in the Sydney region, the Blue Mountains and Central Coast.

“The Express Homebuyers way is to give you a fast house sale with no hassles so that you can move on with your life,” the company says. It offers a post office box in St Ives as its address

Home repossessions in Sydney have more than doubled in the past three years to more than 3500 a year, according to Supreme Court figures.

Simon Turner