This vicious new scam takes advantage of the most vulnerable.

Did you know there’s a new real estate scam that may take advantage of your mom, grandparents, or other family members?

There is a new scam going around, and they’re preying on our elderly, our economically challenged, and our homeowners who don’t speak English as their first language. They’ve got a great Internet campaign and call campaign where they will reach out to sellers, talk to them about selling their house, and then eventually start talking about how bad the economy is.

During this call, this company will offer the seller a check for anywhere from $300 to $5,000. The seller usually thinks, “Well, I’m getting a gift card or check because I had the phone call.” Some are thinking, “Well, if I ever sell my house, I will call them to give them a chance to sell it.” These homeowners don’t realize that once this company sends that check out, they’re also sending a notary with a document for that seller to sign. Again, the seller is just thinking they’re signing a document saying they received the payment. They’re actually signing a document that says they agree to list their home with that company, and this agreement stands for the next 40 years!

Maybe your mom signed this agreement, and ten years down the road, she decides to sell her house. Technically, she can only sell with that company. Or the other catch is if she decides to sell with another Realtor, she will still have to pay that company an extra 3%.

“There is a new scam going around.”

I had that situation with one of my clients. I’d gotten a listing agreement with her. We found a buyer for the property, and then we found out that she had signed these documents with this company, and there’s now a lien on her property. So at the closing table, she will have to pay the normal 6% commission plus an extra 3% on top of that. That’s just not right. You can watch the full story here. 

As Realtors, we can make a great living. There’s no reason to scam our elderly, our economically challenged, and our homeowners who don’t speak English as their first language. Most of these people have no idea what they’re signing. At this point, it seems as though none of the Realtor associations are willing to do anything about it. They’re not protecting homeowners. The state’s real estate commission are taking complaints about it, but they’re not doing anything about it. Our state attorney general office has an investigation into it, but they’re not doing anything. Our elderly and our economically challenged are losing money at the closing table every day because of this unethical company. That’s the best I can say on video.

So I want to say to you, please help your family members, your mom, your grandparents, your sisters, and your friend, and let them know that this scam is out there. No ethical agent will ever pay you money just to sit down and have a conversation about selling your house and lock you into a 40-year agreement with them.

If you have any questions about this scam or if someone you know has been a victim of this one, please reach out to me by giving me a call at (919) 675-9967 or sending an email. I’d like to hear your thoughts!