Q: Is there a website where you can pay to have your mortgage papers reviewed before closing so you can make sure you’re not getting ripped off? Thank you.

A: Not that I know of. But most attorneys will agree to do it for an hourly fee — and it shouldn’t take more than an hour or so for an experienced real estate attorney to make sure you’re not getting scammed, assuming you have no problems with the paperwork.

But the time to have your deal reviewed is before you sign the papers. Once you sign the mortgage documentation, you’re obligated to go through with the deal. (There is a 3-day right of rescission for those refinancing their primary residence, but it’s better to be sure you want to do the deal before you sign on the dotted line.)

By the way, many people are scammed way earlier than the time they get to the closing to sign papers. While there are times that consumers have arrived at the closing table only to find that the terms of the loan they wanted have change for the worse, many more people agree to pay for excessive fees, higher than market interest rates, and other excessive costs when they first meet with a mortgage broker or lender.

Much of the loan documentation for residential loans is generally standardized across the country. But while the documents may be the same, the loan terms can vary from lender to lender. You should make sure you understand the terms of the loan you are applying for and then make sure that those same terms are reflected in the mortgage documents you’re supposed to sign at your loan closing.

Dec. 30, 2008.