6 Easy Ways to Know any Real Estate Scam

Real estate scams is a global phenomenon and if not properly avoided can take away your hard-earned money.

While certain sellers and buyers are very trustworthy, there could be deceptive sellers and buyers who are waiting and ready to take advantage of you, especially if you are not careful or too anxious to get the

deal done.

But first,…

What is a Real estate scam?

A Real estate scam is a type of scam where a scammer claims ownership of a property illegally, with the intention of deceiving a prospective buyer into buying that property.

Well, you may ask: “How do I know if I could be scammed?”

Good question!

So, there are signs or red flags you need to watch out for, in order to avoid any real estate scam.

In this article, we would be walking you through “6 easy ways to know any real estate scam”.


1. Don’t be in a hurry to rent or buy any real estate property

One of the common deceptive strategies used by real estate scammers is trying to speed up the buying process.

Most of these real estate scammers have mastered this strategy to the extent that you might not notice. They make you feel like they are doing you a favour and making you think you might lose out of the deal if you don’t act fast.


2. Always ensure to verify the individual or company you are working with

Before committing yourself to any individual or company that act as a real estate expert, always do proper online — LinkedIn is one trusted social media platform you can check.

Also, ask other people for referrals and look out for reviews of their previous works. 

It is very important to carry out these background checks in order to check for possible scams.


3. Do not pay hand-to-hand by cash for any real estate property

You should avoid paying any real estate agent in cash without going through bank transaction, as transactions made via hand payments are not traceable, if anything goes wrong.


4. Ask a lot of questions before carrying out any real estate transaction

Seeking to know about any anomalies of any real estate property is a good real estate buying or renting process. 

Ask the seller the reason for the property sale, ask if there is any pending court case regarding the property, ask about family or government interference, building material type, legal documents, etc

This helps you to make an informed decision before making any transaction and avoid future conflicts.


5. Avoid email scams

Email scams are very common method of real estate scams. However, they are avoidable.

This kind of scams are carried out by phishing scammers who send emails with links or attachment designed to hack your system for confidential or sensitive information. 

For this reason, do not download attachment from any untrusted email sender.


6. Ensure you go for Inspection before making any purchase decision

For any real estate deal, a big red flag is whether the landlord or agent tries to prevent you from inspecting the property document or property itself. If nothing to cover is suspicious, so inspection is not negotiable, insist on a review and promptly cancel the real estate contract, if not granted by the landlord or representative.


Bottom line

In as much as real estate investment is necessary, real estate scams could be scary.  But if you know what to look for, you can easily identify a scammer when you see one.

Also, with any real estate transaction, it’s important to know who you’re dealing with. Verify the details of the individual or company identity as much as possible, and double check all banking transactions.

Lastly, ensure to carefully record all real estate transactions, in case you need to go back and file a complaint.

If you learnt anything new, kindly tell us in the comment section

Check out our previous blog post – 4 easy ways to invest in real estate in Nigeria

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