Beware real estate scams

With real estate such a hot commodity these days, it’s not surprising that scams abound. A few to watch out for include:

  • “Private” sales: Direct sales at an amazing price often mean that the “agent” isn’t really an agent and the house may not even be for sale.
  • Title theft: Filing a fake title change with the local government office can allow the fake owner to sell the property quickly.
  • “Holding” deposits: Common in very hot markets, “holding” deposits do nothing to advance a sale and allow the agent to make a little extra money.
  • Foreclosure “relief”: Since public records list homes in foreclosure, scammers often jump in with offers to help for a “service fee” and then quickly disappear.

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