Top 4 Atlanta Housing Scams
Posted in Real Estate, Housing market, Atlanta Real Estate on April 6, 2023
What are real estate scams?Real estate scams are fraudulent activities that take advantage of a person’s vulnerable position or their lack of knowledge about the real estate market or its related processes. Scammers often use a variety of tactics to swindle unsuspecting individuals out of their hard-earned money and valuable property. It is essential that, as a home seller, you stay vigilant and informed when selling your house in Atlanta.
Different types of housing scamsSelling your house in Atlanta is stressful enough without having to worry about getting scammed. Here are 4 of the most common scams that sellers in Atlanta need to watch out for:
Deed scamsThis scheme usually involves fake deed transfers or title companies that promise homeowners fast closings, but then take off with the money after transferring a deed into the name of another person. It can also involve using the homeowner’s property as collateral for borrowing after the illegal transfer. Falling victim to deed scams could result in the loss of your Atlanta house.
Foreclosure relief scamsThis type of scam involves fraudulent operators that offer rushed “foreclosure relief” services in exchange for quick payments from homeowners facing foreclosure. These operators will promise to stop the foreclosure or modify the terms of the loan for an upfront fee. Once you’ve paid the fee, they disappear with your money and without having done anything to help stop the foreclosure.
Home inspection scamsThese scams, while typically affecting Atlanta buyers more than sellers, involve a fake inspector who promises an inspection of a property. The inspector will inevitably miss things during the inspection process and then bill you for an incomplete inspection that is completely useless.
Wire fraud scamsThese scams target buyers and sellers alike, and they are one of the most prevalent frauds in Atlanta real estate. It takes place when the scammer attempts to gain access to a person’s financial information by posing as a legitimate party during the transition process. Usually, a scammer will pose as your real estate agent, or another person involved in the sale, by using a similar email address to try and trick you into wiring the funds for your closing costs or providing your bank account information. It’s important for you to directly contact the legitimate person who supposedly sent you the email, using the contact information they’ve previously provided, to see if they need information from you, rather than replying to the potentially fake message. However, you shouldn’t email your bank information to anyone regardless of their authenticity.
Warning signs of real estate fraudWhen you’re selling a house in Atlanta, you want to make sure you don’t become the victim of real estate fraud. It is important to make yourself aware of the warning signs of real estate scams. Warning signs can be broken down into two main categories: financial and physical.
Financial warning signs:
- Requests for large deposits or fees prior to services being rendered
- Requests for payment via wire transfer or cashier's check rather than credit card or over an electronic application
- Lack of documentation, especially contracts or receipts
Personal warning signs:
- Unprofessional communication, such as rude language or grammar mistakes in emails or letters
- Unwillingness to meet face-to-face
- A third party who claims that a problem exists with the property that needs to be fixed before the sale can go through
What do I do if I am being scammed?If you think you’re falling victim to a real estate scam, it’s important to act quickly and seek help from the appropriate local authorities. The first step would be to file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) or your local consumer protection agency in Atlanta, and then contact the attorney general’s office in Georgia for additional assistance.
You should keep a record of all your transactions with these individuals or companies who are perpetrating the fraud. Keep receipts, emails, and other evidence that shows you have been scammed. Additionally, it would be wise to contact your credit card companies and your bank to make sure funds are not taken from your account.
Don’t get scammed!When selling your house in Atlanta, you should be aware of the potential scams that could put you at risk for financial losses. Do your research, look for reviews online as well as a physical address, and be sure to confirm the identity of any buyers or agents that you choose to work with. As a general rule of thumb, you should always meet with a buyer in person, be wary of any last-minute changes, and avoid any upfront fees. With a little preparation and knowledge, you can rest assured that you will be able to avoid scams and successfully sell your house.
Work with real estate professionals.If you need to sell your Atlanta house in a hurry, you could become a target of real estate scammers. To make sure you don’t become a victim, it’s important that you don’t sell to just anyone.
When you work with us, you don’t have to worry about any scams. There are plenty of cash-for-houses scams and ‘we buy houses’ scams out there, but they are not us. Look at our reviews and read about us online. Reach out and ask about how the process works, and how We Buy Ugly Houses® works for you.
We won’t hit you with any surprise fees or inspection costs because we offer a free consultation every time. We don’t use pressure tactics and only call you after you’ve contacted us. We respect your time and privacy. We don’t charge commissions, either—so you don’t have to worry about any unexpected commission rates that you get with iBuyers.
We offer complete transparency with our customer-forward process and are happy to answer any questions you may have.
Contact us today at 866-200-6475 to get a free consultation for a fair cash offer on your house in Atlanta!