How to avoid getting scammed

In today’s real estate market, having a dependable and trustworthy agent by your side is always a great way to avoid common scams.

For instance, many homeowners can get quite desperate when trying to avoid impending foreclosure. Or sellers may be tempted to rip off unwitting buyers or renters.

So it’s always best to be on your toes. By arming yourself with essential information, you can stop scams even before they happen.

Here are some of the common scams in real estate:

    1. Title scams

    Getting the services of a title company is essential when buying a home, no matter what anyone else tells you.

    Without a title search, a buyer can end up with a home with outstanding tax liens,which the buyer would need to pay for.

    Title companies are there to verify whether the seller is indeed the property’s legal owner, and ferret out debts or legal issues associated with the property.

    Remember to always deal directly with the title company, and think twice about dealing with financing companies or sellers proposing to act as middlemen.

    2. Foreclosure scams

    Many unscrupulous lenders take advantage of desperate homeowners facing foreclosure.

    Do not trust anyone offering unsolicited loan offers, and report any solicitation claiming to be from a government agency.

    In case you’re having a hard time making mortgage payments, talk to your lender and see if you can work out alternate arrangements.

    3. Mortgage compression

    There are some companies who offer to refinance a home and provide significantly reduced payments and shorter loan terms.

    What they actually do is act as the middleman, and simply pay your lender.
    Because they charge extra on monthly payments, mortgage terms are shortened.

    This is something you can actually do yourself, without need of their services. Simply contact your lender and renegotiate payment terms, so you can pay a little more to shorten the terms of your loan.