Selling your property soon? Here’s how to protect your property from fraud!
Many people are becoming a victim of property fraud because of the tactics that scammers use, as they are now much more sophisticated than before. Here we will show you what you can do in order to protect yourself from this happening.
What is property fraud?
As properties are worth a lot and can be sold and used to raise a mortgage, they are often targeted by fraudsters!
Check out these points about the main types of fraud and what you can do to protect yourself:
Scammers who attempt to sell your property will actually transfer your property into their own name by using false documents. Fraudsters often target properties where there is no mortgage or the owner lives elsewhere. Scams can also happen when you are due to complete the purchase or sale of your property, by fraudster intercepting funds or getting you to transfer funds into their bank account instead of your conveyancer. Keep in mind that a quick sale or a too good to be true property investment scam, usually are just that.
Are you at risk?
Anyone who owns, or is in the process of buying a home could potentially be targeted by scams, but some homeowners are more at risk than others. If your property is empty or rented out, it is more vulnerable to fraud. Properties that aren’t mortgaged are seen as more high risk, as are those that are not registered with the Land Registry.
Steps to take if you think you are at risk!
If you believe that you are at risk of property fraud, the first thing you should do is sign up to the Land Registry Alert Service.
What are some of the main scams?
Email hacking – This is when fraudsters intercept emails between the buyer and their solicitor and alter the bank details, so money is sent into their own accounts. You can reduce this risk by receiving the solicitors bank details by email and don’t ask for any sensitive details to be sent by post. Also, it is a good idea to phone the company directly and make sure any bank details are correct before transferring money
Investment scams – These are countless ‘get-rich-quick’ investment scams that involve getting you to hand over money on the promise of dubious high returns. Land banking is when a plot of land is marketed as having investment potential, but it can never be built on or may not even exist.
For more tips to help protect you from fraud, read the full article here.
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