With the increasing rise in frauds in the real estate market, a large number of innocent home-seekers are getting scammed. Although it is difficult to determine the authenticity of the agent, there are certain ways you can sniff out a scam. Given below are 4 ways an “agent” can cheat you.
Renting Out Vacant Houses
In this type of real estate scam, the fraudsters will target houses that have been vacant for a long period of time either because the actual property owner is working in another country, or because he has gone on a long vacation. These fake agents will sometimes pose as homeowners themselves or as someone who is authorized to rent out the house on behalf of the owner. Once they have lured the potential renters into leasing the house, these imposters will make them sign fake rental agreement documents and collect money from the renters every month. This scam goes on till the actual owner comes back to his or her house only to find it occupied, leaving the renters with no option but to vacate the house.
Saving Homeowners From Foreclosure
Some fraudsters pose as rescuers, claiming that they can help homeowners save their property from foreclosure. This scam involves the imposter getting a fake loan on the house, or suggesting that the owners give out the property for rent. In return, they charge a huge sum of money as fees from those homeowners who are desperate to save their property. At the end, the so-called rescuer escapes with the cash, eventually leaving the homeowner with no money and no house as well.
Giving Out Unavailable Properties For Lease
In this type of scam, the con artist targets people who are looking for a rental place on a temporary basis. The fraudster then selects a house that is on the market, but not listed under rental places. The renters who are unaware of this trickery, wire the requested security deposit and rent amount to the imposter only to find out on arrival that the house they paid for isn’t actually a rental place, thus leaving them with no house to stay.
Selling Illegal Properties
The imposter purchases illegal properties and resells them for higher prices. This scam involves creation of fake loan documents and unsound appraisals. The fraudster poses as a well qualified agent and sells off these properties immediately to potential buyers for an inflated amount. Once the scam is uncovered, the illegal property is foreclosed, forcing the buyer to search for another place to stay.
Hi I am Abishek Kumar, blog writer by profession with commonfloor.com. CommonFloor is India’s leading online real estate platform that combines property search, apartment management and vendor management, thereby catering to consumers’ complete residential needs. I provide tips and suggestions on property investment, real estate basics, and community living. For more property related queries, you can visit http://www.commonfloor.com