How to Protect Yourself from real estate scams

Real estate scams are becoming more rampant, and there is a need for you to stay vigilant and not fall into the traps of real estate scammers. They can scam anyone, and it’s the funniest thing you will ever read today.

Recently, the F.B.I. even disclosed that real estate transactions are a growing target of wire fraud. In this article, we shared some excellent and easy ways to fight back with the help of Atrium forensics, a fund recovery company based in Australia. To better help you understand how this scam operates, we shared a recent story of someone who almost got scammed by these real estate scams.

Justin Rubinstein had a license as an associate real estate broker at Compass. He was working to close on a one-bedroom condo on the Williamsburg waterfront in June of 2016 with a buyer. As they were finalizing the deal, the client gets an email — supposedly from his lawyer — providing precise instructions of where to wire a $214,500 down payment.

Almost immediately after sending the money, the client realized that the wiring instructions were not from his lawyer. Instead, a scammer was sending the email, and he was a victim of wire fraud. But, the client was lucky. He informs his bank to freeze the account before the banks did the transfer immediately.

“The criminals operating were able to hack into the attorney’s email and monitoring their account, following deals closely,” Mr. Rubinstein says. “When it was time to send a wire for the down payment, they intercepted the email. They sent fraudulent wire instructions to the buyer.”

How does the scammer operate?

The real estate industry is moving at a fast-pace. As a result, people share emails with very sensitive financial information with little or no face-to-face interaction. These scammers now have a sophisticated wire fraud scheme. They hack into and closely monitor the email exchanges of the parties involved in the real estate transactions.

At the 11th hour, scammers can pretend to be participants and ask that the buyer wires down payment funds to fraudulent bank accounts. Since they spend weeks intercepting personal information, they can customize and craft extremely compelling email requests.

“Many players participate in these transactions,”

James Abbott.

A supervisory special agent for the F.B.I.’s criminal investigative division, says. “It can be the real estate agent or the real estate lawyer, an escrow company, buyer, and even the seller — there are a lot of potential targets.”

General Tips to avoid Real Estate Property Scams

  1. Whether you are buying or renting a property from a landlord or you are going to sell and rent your property to tenants, ensure this to make your contract in written form. Never assume that the party you are dealing with will follow verbal promises.
  2. If you are going to make any kind of real estate property deal for the first time, it’s better to take advice from experienced professionals. Experienced and qualified investors and professionals will help you to estimate the real value of the project or property for which you are investing your money. They will also help you to identify the ambiguity in a contract. Professional suggestions will surely protect you to make doubtful deals.
  3. Before making a final decision to invest in any property development project, it is good to observe major property development projects. You can also find information about common real estate scam cases via media. Usually, real estate fraudsters try to use the same technique to deceive people. This makes it a little easy to identify the scam property deal.
  4. Try to work with certified professionals. It is critically important to work with authorized real estate agents and property management companies. Moreover, if you are individually selling or renting your property to a buyer or tenant, make sure about his employment and bank balance. If a person you are dealing with shows a complex background be careful then, he may be a scam artist.
  5. Always ready to quit any real estate deal, even if the offer is too good. In case you don’t get satisfactory answers to any of your questions related to the property you are going to buy or rent. Keep it in mind real estate deals must be profitable for both parties. Don’t focus only on what you will be getting after the deal; also consider what another party will get at the end.
  6. Also, keep an eye on your bank accounts; you will also become a victim of identity theft that may lead to involve you in sort of corruption and fake bank transactions. Scam artists can open fake accounts with your name and make scam deals on your name. Maintain proper data of your accounts and properties you possess to avoid such incidents of identity thefts.
  7. Avoid paying beyond your capacity to pay for a property. Real estate scams also betray buyers and sellers showing them the urgency to sell or purchase assets and encourage them to pay extra money for the property or finalizing sale deal below actual market prices. It is important to consider the correct value of property ad your budget limits.

Following these simple tips will help you to avoid real estate property scams. Whether you are going to purchase, sale or rent a property. There are always chances to become a victim, only careful observation of the whole business process will protect you from property scams.

Some steps to recover your money from a real estate scam.

Once you realize that you are a fraudulent transfer victim, it is crucial to act immediately. Quickly contact your financial institution and ask for a recall of funds. If you use a money transfer company, like Western Union or MoneyGram, call their complaint line right away. Better still, visit any effective fund recovery company like Alienm4n to help you quickly recover your lost fund either in Bitcoin or wire transfer.

You can as well, contact your local police office to file an official report with law enforcement. You can at least file an online complaint with the bureau’s internet crime complaint center. If your bank needs a police report, use a copy” of the online complaint.

If you prefer to fight back and be in control, you can hire a recovery expert like Atrium forensics to help you recover stolen funds. Visit their website to learn more about this process –

Read Also: How to Recover Stolen Cryptocurrency

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