Unfortunately, there are cash home buyers who have given the business a bad reputation. And while Home Buyers Express is certainly not one of them, we think it’s important to educate you on what scams look like so you know how to avoid them. Before you make the big move, read carefully over these indicators to make sure you aren’t getting scammed.
How to Identify a Cash Home Buyer Scam
- The buyer is taking an unexplainable blind leap. If your buyer is living or traveling out of the country for an unknown reason, interested in your property without seeing it, or isn’t familiar with your neighborhood, this could be a sign of a scam. The buyer should want to know everything they can about your home and the community.
- Overeager about sharing financial details. There is a time and place for sharing financial details, and scammers have a tendency to walk that very thin line. If someone is sharing financial details with you before you requested it, this could be a sign — especially if the person has never met or had a conversation with you about the process. In addition, if someone is willing to send money before it’s necessary, this could also indicate a scam.
- Their stories don’t line up. Usually in an array of scam emails, the so called buyer will come up with excuses as to why they can’t contact you or see your home. Typically they say it’s because they’re in a different country, don’t have access to a phone, etc. If you’re having trouble arranging simple points of contact and they continue to make excuses for their behavior, it’s most likely a scam.
- They want to transfer the deed to their name. This type of scam is known as equity skimming. A scammer will try to convince you to transfer the deed of your home to their name, but continue to let you live in it as long as you’re paying monthly payments. If you went forward with these monthly payments, the scammer could use that home equity to get a loan — and then sell that house to another party. Once they make all the money they can from the property, the scammer can just stop paying the mortgage payments. And because the scammer never assumed the loan, you’ll be the one responsible for the payments. Which leaves you without a home — even though you’re still making mortgage payments.
- They keep coming up with changes to the agreement. Once an agreement is made, it should be pretty set in stone. So if the scammer keeps trying to update the agreement, have your guard up. Oftentimes, they’ll try to be discreet by saying the changes are “minor”. But if this happens multiple times, your agreement could end up looking completely different than what it did originally.
- The buyer doesn’t have any references. Legitimate cash home buyers are reputable, as many of them are investors and real estate agents. If your supposed buyer doesn’t have any references or refuses to share them, you’re probably dealing with a scam. Before you begin negotiating, ask the buyer to send you a list of properties the buyer has purchased in the past. With that information, take some time to check the courthouse records to verify the information is accurate.
If you need to sell your house fast in Maryland but aren’t sure where to find professional help from people you can trust, we would love to help you. Home Buyers Express is a professional and reputable Real Estate Investment company with over 20 years of experience in the real estate industry. Visit our “how it works” page to learn more about our simple and effective process, and contact us today!