Online Shopping, Real Estate Apps & Sales Pitches
Avoid Gimmicks & Real Estate Scams
Be weary of real estate websites that offer deals that seem too good to be true. Here are a few common real estate scams to look out for:
- Your Home Sold, Guaranteed- or we will buy it Yup, for 60% of its value then assign the contract before closing to an investor for 80% market value.
- 1% Commission It is very highly unlikely that a listing agent will provide full service for 1%. With such a discounted rate, you will probably get a lock box on your door for unaccompanied showings and a basic MLS listing with poor-quality photography. ASK for a marketing plan and get it in writing. Have your attorney look over the listing agreement for extra protection. Keep in mind that you will also need to pay the buyer’s agent commission when listing your home. If you offer the buyer’s agent a severely discounted commission, they will not be motivated to show your home. This lack of exposure could lead to a much lower sales price that may be more costly than paying a standard commission amount. Learn more about how real estate commissions work in Florida.
- We buy houses cash, in any condition They sure do, for way less than market value. If you even consider selling your home to the “we buy ugly houses” investors, you have to get a home appraisal to ensure you aren’t getting ripped off.
- Wholesale prices & off-market inventory These are often assignable contracts without warranty and buyers will be asked to pay commissions and finders fees.
- Short Sales, Foreclosures, and Bank-Owned Deals They sell for market value; if it is undervalued there is a reason- you’ll pay the difference one way or another.
- Free Money You know better, right? If they are giving you money, there is a reason, find it. There is truly no such thing as a free lunch. Agents who claim to gift commissions also gift less service, time, and effort in negotiating, researching, and pursuing your best interests.
- Rental Scams If you find a rental online that is listed well below market value, you should proceed with caution. The Federal Trade Commission has received 182,200 fraud reports from January 1, 2020, to February 1, 2021, for a total of $319.96 million lost from real estate scams. Learn how to spot rental scams. The listing description, photography, domain, and contact information should be examined for red flags.
Real estate scams are on the rise. Be sure that you hire a professional and do your due diligence to ensure a smooth transaction and a fair deal.