How to avoid real estate scams?
Whether you are looking to buy or rent a home or you are selling your own, you want to avoid real estate scams. Real estate is a field where scams are very common because it is very profitable. And if you aren’t aware of these scams, you might get yourself in a lot of complicated and messy situations. Getting scammed is the worst thing that can happen to you in the field of real estate. That is why we decided to help you by explaining how you can avoid real estate scams and telling you a bit more about these scams.
Most common real estate scams
We will start this off by telling you about some of the most common real estate scams out there. There are many of them but it is simply impossible to write them all down.
- Fake listings
If you are searching to buy or rent a home you have probably come across a few of these fake listings. You might have even clicked on one or two. It’s pure luck that you didn’t fall for them. But many people did. What are these fake listings and how to spot them? Fake listings are made to blend in with other listings, the real ones. They have pictures, descriptions, phone numbers. Everything a real listing has to best present a home and sell it fast. So how can you know if it’s fake?
For starters, these listings are usually posted by an individual. So, a home is sold or rented without a real estate agent. To catch your attention, the price is usually a lot lower than the prices of other homes in that neighborhood. The person selling or renting the home will most likely want you to communicate over messages or e-mail. What they will do is request a certain amount of money from you as a ‘reservation’ for the home you are interested in. By the time your money is in their hands, the listing will be gone but so will the phone numbers, emails, and any other information that was displayed. Dealing with property is serious business with a lot of money involved and if you decide to sell your home privately make sure you know how to do it properly.
You have to be careful when looking at online listings.
- Fake real estate agents
This is scary to hear but some people have been caught pretending to be real estate agents without any licenses. These fake real estate agents pretended to sell people’s homes. And it worked out for them. How? What they actually did was pretend that the house is impossible to sell because the ‘price is too high’ so the owners had to lower the prices. Once the price was low enough and couldn’t go lower, the ‘buyers’ will start to call. These aren’t actual buyers but people in a deal with the fake real estate agents. Once they buy the house they sell it for much more money. As you can see these people are very creative and they know how to trick you. That is why you need to know exactly how much is your home worth.
Beware of fake real estate agents.
- Fake moving companies
Fake moving companies are on the rise, yes. You have to be very careful. We have to mention this because it is in close relation with the real estate industry yet not many people talk about this. As you can probably imagine, these fake moving companies steal your belongings. They usually do long-distance relocations. Their prices are usually very low. Too good to be true low. They also seem unprofessional. The movers don’t have uniforms, the truck might also seem old or ruined. The overall feel won’t be very pleasant but once you’ve hired them, there is no going back.
It is very important to hire reliable movers even if you need junk to be removed from your business facility. This way you will be safe and won’t have to think about whether or not your stuff is in good hands. Remember that all moving companies have to be licensed, they have to have at least one office that you can visit. Make sure you search online for the reviews and experiences with the moving company you are thinking about hiring. Ask the people you know if they know someone who could help you.
Don’t hire an unreliable moving company.
How to avoid real estate scams?
If you want to avoid getting scammed, you simply have to do one thing. Just as you would have professionals transport your piano, you should hire a reliable real estate agent. Real estate agents are aware of all the scams out there. They will sell your property fast or find you one even faster. But what is a reliable real estate agent? First of all, he or she has to have a license to work in the field of real estate. It’s best if you hire someone that has years of successful work behind him. It is even better if a family member or a friend can recommend a real estate agent. This way you will be 100% sure that your property is in safe hands. If you are searching for a real estate agent online be very picky. Pick the one with the best website and the best reviews. After all, dealing with property, whether you are buying or selling one, is very difficult to do. Not only is it difficult but it is also very expensive.
What we can tell you is to be very cautious when dealing with the real estate industry. It is very profitable so scams are on every turn you make. Make sure that the people working for you are reliable.