Getting caught in the web of a fake real estate buyer’s agent can become the worst nightmare of your life. It can also turn your beautiful dream of owning your own apartment into a mere hallucination. There is hardly any juicy industry in that we do not have fake people perpetrating fake accounts and fake offers. These scammers tangle with everything we do in the real estate industry and meddle with good processes to turn the outcome into a bad experience.
Furthermore, a typical rental fraud is when a landlord or buyer’s agent pretends to sell a property that does not even exist. Such fake owners try to collect application fees, processing fees, security deposits, and other prior payments before their cover blows up. Despite the authority’s efforts to curb this behavior, we still have a number of them lurking around. And buyers, especially first-time buyers, need to be extra careful not to fall, victim.
Investing in real estate takes the help of a professional buyers agent who can help to manage your financial input. It is also essential to learn the ropes, particularly within Sydney real estate locality, on identifying fake real estate agents. This article can identify some common signs showing a counterfeit buyer’s agent. Let us start with the characters.
How to Identify a Fake Buyers Agent
There are warning signs that should signal that you are about to deal with the wrong person. However, if you are unfamiliar with the characters, you may have gone far and lost some money, if not all. Check the following signals
- Fake rental scammers always claim to be unavailable or out of town when you need to have a physical meeting. Perhaps, after you heard about the property and the value, you request to meet them personally and inspect it. They then give an excuse that they are presently out of town. Check it
- Many fake real estate buyer agents pretend to be military soldiers, missionaries, UN workers, or veterans. One reason they do this is so that you can give them special consideration and assume a level of trust. At times, they provide this kind of identity so that you will ignore the background check you should have done. If any new agent tells you this, watch out more closely for other signs to show he may be making a fool of you.
- When a new buyer’s agent calls you at odd hours from your local time and misses your appointment hours simultaneously, it is a wrong signal. This sign clearly indicates that they are probably located overseas, outside your time zone, and are deceiving you.
- No real estate agent should ask for your financial information from the beginning of the discussion, primarily when virtual. Not even your real estate broker or mortgage bank lender should do that. Otherwise, you may be putting your financial details at considerable risk.
Type of Real Estate Frauds by a Fake Sydney Buyers Agent
Now you have an idea of red signals to avoid when meeting a new buyer’s agent for the first time. Another aspect we will be looking at is the common types of rental frauds that one may encounter in Sydney. Follow them carefully on the way, stop and avoid them. Click here to read about Online marketing ideas for buyer agent Sydney.
- Already Leased Property
This fake transaction stems from a scammer trying to sell an already leased property. In this case, he attempts to collect a deposit fee before even seeing the property or doing every other paperwork.
- Hijacked Ads
In this case, the homeowner places ads on specific platforms. A scam artist uses fake contact information to promote the actual property. In such a case, the location can be accurate. Still, the contact information leads to the scammer who may make unwholesome demands.
- Phantom Rentals
When a fake landlord or homeowner enlists a property that does not exist or is not available for rent, it is called a phantom rental. Such a case may even be committed by an actual landlord trying to play a fast one on innocent real estate investors vulnerable to fake buyers’ agents.
The Bait-and-Switch occurs when someone advertises a property at a lower mortgage rate than the actual amount. As a result, the scanner collects the deposit fees and elopes before you get to know the real mortgage rate on the property. Usually, the bait is the reduced mortgage rate, and a first-time buyer may jump at it.
After you attempt to contact the landlord directly about the property, you discover that there was no such offer in the first place. The fake agent must have collected the money before learning that the property is actually unavailable. In some cases, the agent stays to tell you that there is another apartment to show you, but it has a higher price. That is the switch.
How to avoid them
The following are important ways to avoid falling victim to these fake real estate buyers’ agents in Sydney. Before you go far on any deal in real estate by contacting the landlord, take the following steps and note them. You can read about Real estate agent obligations by visiting https://www.accc.gov.au/consumers/health-home-travel/real-estate
- Verify the address of the property to be accurate and consistent
- Call the Sydney buyers agent’s office directly to make the inquiry, sometimes anonymously
- Compare the price of the chosen rental to the general cost of housing in the neighborhood and ensure they resonate
- Read through the terms and conditions thoroughly
- Do research on the seller and verify all the given information
- Never go to inspect a property you do not feel comfortable with. Remember that you are the buyer, and you reserve the right to spend your money on any property that is perfect for you.
General Ways of Avoiding Fraudulent Listings and other Scams
A listing may look genuine; it is quite different from being verified. And then you don’t want to lose your hard-earned investment and life savings to a scammer. To be safe side, you can imbibe the following helpful ideas and steps:
- Visit the property in person and, if possible, in the company of another trusted fellow
- A quest that you need to speak directly with the current or previous renters or owners of the apartment
- Contact only the reliable Real Estate companies with verifiable track records in Sydney
- Do not pay for properties in cash or wire transfer. Explore other options like the escrow
- Double-check the rent and different prices before signing off the lease documents.