Published On: Tue, Jan 1st, 2019

4 Property Frauds You Need to Know While Buying a Real Estate Property

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Buying a new property is extremely tough. Recently, a sudden rise in the scams and frauds people facing while buying the real estate has been seen. Due to these frauds, many people have lost their life savings that have made buying the property more difficult and full of confusion.

In the era of science and technology, the lives of the people have become very easy. At the same time, there are wide opportunities for scammers to cheat. When it comes to buying a property, several steps can be taken to avoid the scam.

The fraud and scam can be expected at any level in the real estate market. The biggest scam in property dealing is usually the agent. Both buyer and seller should get the services of the agent who is registered with real estate agency affairs board. In some states, the agent is also required to have a certificate to be regarded as an authentic agent.

Try getting the service of certified agents for avoiding frauds as much as possible. As a matter of fact, it is completely illegal for an agent to work as a professional agent if he does not have the certificate. In the USA, the agents’ certificates are given more importance. It is obligatory for the agents to have a certificate. California, Los Angeles, Fort Worth Realtor are working as a bridge between the seller and buyers.

The certificate is issued to the agent for only one year which indicates that the agent is allowed to practice his job as a licensed agent for one year. Here are some frauds associated with selling and purchase of real estate property:

           Emails Related Fraud

The scammers often hack the email address of the agents of lawyers and then use that email to contact the buyers to trick them by asking them to wire them the money to be transferred. The buyer then transfers the money to their account instead of the account of appropriate parties. The scammers make use of generic email address where the buyer can send the money without a money trail.

In order to avoid this fraud, all you need to do is contacting the seller on the phone for email verification. Moreover, the seller should inform the buyer in person about the changes in the payment details whenever it is needed. It should be kept in mind that email is not a substantial way to make contact with each other as the scammers can hack it.

Another way to protect yourself from intercepted emails is to read the instructions and payment details carefully. It should also be ensured that the trusted parties have provided the bank details. If the seller changes the bank, the buyer should get the verification phone call from the bank in question.

Sometimes, you are even not able to see the email address because the criminal hides it while you send the message to it. Such scammers usually use free email servers and often use random letters in email Id so that they cannot be tracked by anyone easily.

1.  Scammers Pretending to Be the Buyers

Another technique used by the fraudsters to trick the people is to approach the seller and act like a buyer. When the seller shows his willingness to sell the property to them, they ask him to sign some documents needed by them for approval of bank loan. Often, the seller does not show a keen interest in reading the document and signs it. In some situations, it is found that the first buyer was marketing the property on different websites.

He was selling the property of the seller as an agent, and someone also transfers the money to the bank account of the supposed agent. To avoid this fraud, you should also ensure that you check the documents and also get them verified.

house keys

2.  Fraudsters Stealing the Identity

Stealing the identity is one of the most widely used tricks for emptying the bank account and obtaining the credit card details. Some scammers also get a home loan on the basis of stolen identity.

The criminals involved in such activity ensure that the detection of fraud gets delayed that will consequently cause the unpaid bills to mount. In this process, the criminals usually use the false documents in order to pose as a registered person and owner of the property who can get even mortgage on the stolen identity.

3.  Scammers Deceiving the Seller by Telling High Price

The criminals often pose them themselves as a buyer and offer a high price to the seller for buying the property while the fake buyer has no intention to buy the property. The criminal then signs the agreement with the seller that binds the seller not to sell the property to anyone but the fake buyer.

This agreement is signed usually for a specific time period. When that period ends, the buyer asks the seller to extend the deadline. In the meanwhile, the seller keeps paying the tax, insurance amount and the utility bills of the property. After some time, the buyer comes back and asks the seller to reduce the price of the property as it is not possible to purchase on the above-market sale price.

The seller has to sell the property in some cases because the fake buyer threatens the seller to cancel the agreement if he does not reduce the price. In this way, the scammer purchases the property at a very low price. The best way to avoid this fraud is to be informed about the property prices prevailing in the market. If someone offers you high price than the market value of the real estate, this should raise your concern about the matter.

Some scammers also ask you to pay the minor amount such as security deposits etc. for initiating the deal. You should be careful while making the payment because such scammers are very hard to trace.

4.  How to Protect Yourself in General?

  1. The fake agents will never let you see the property you want to purchase. They make different excuses and ask you to pay first and then to show you the property. Remember that the real agents will never do such things. They will always make time for their clients as it is their job to show the property to their clients and let them be completely satisfied before making the payment.

Keep that in mind if the agent is making excuses for not showing you the property, he might not have access to the property he is trying to sell. Remember that he will keep making excuses until he gets a smarter way to get you to make the payment in any case.

  1. The fake seller always pushes the buyer to buy the property. The scammer will always try to make you willing to buy the property. Some sellers also use the different smart tactic to push you for buying the property as soon as possible. You should never be panic. Make time and think about why the seller is pushing you. These smart sellers often push the buyer to purchase the property. They play a trick without getting caught. It is better to not deal with such sellers who try to put pressure on you for buying the property sold by them.

Some sellers or landlord also push the buyer to test the property and also show a great disappointment when you refuse to buy their property.

  1. Another type of fraud that victimizes a number of people are the fraud of people residing overseas wanting to buy the property unseen. The people who want to buy the property in actual are interested in seeing the property before making any investment. Never trust the person who does not show any interest in the property and willing to buy it at any cost. Make sure that you conduct the international inquiries because the fraudsters residing in other countries are very difficult to trace. Foreigners who don’t care to see the property are more likely to cheat you.
  2. The fake seller will always ask you to wire the money instead of sending it through the bank. It should be kept in mind that the money which is wired is not easily traceable and it reaches the intended person sooner. The person taking the wired money will never be tracked as his payment details are not being monitored at any level. You should never send the money to those people who ask you to wire it.
  3. If there is any bargain available online, make sure that you contact the real estate agency to check its authenticity. There is a contact number and email address given below the bargain which should not be contacted. Always try to find the contact details of the right person and ask the receptionist to give you the number of the agent or the real owner of the property.

SMT Newsroom



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