Another Scam:' Contracts for deed are making a comeback. They are increasingly being used by investment firms that have bought thousands of foreclosed homes and want to sell them to lower-income buyers “as is.” Contracts for deed are similar in some ways to the subprime lending that contributed to the housing bust in this century. Investors in these contracts include some of the Wall Street players who inflated the mortgage bubble. Contracts for deed make gouging possible, because unlike traditional mortgages, there is no appraisal or inspection to ensure that the loan amount is reasonable. They also let an investor swiftly evict buyers for missed payments, rather than giving them time to catch up, as required under a mortgage. And they usually require the buyer to pay hefty upfront fees. Unlike a rental security deposit, however, the fee is almost never refundable.