While it is illegal to pay kickbacks to certain mortgage originators, title companies and other services connected to a real estate deal, that doesn’t stop people and companies from taking action in the “grey” area of illegal kickbacks.
Just recently, Prospect Mortgage agreed to a settlement with HUD to repay alleged illegal kickbacks. The company built a large network of “affiliates” to facilitate (allegedly) the transactions and avoid the direct kickbacks known to be illegal.
It just goes to show that no matter how many laws, statutes or ethical principles come in to play, there will always be highly intelligent cons played against the system. In the end, it always comes down to buyer (or end user) beware.
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