5 Signs to Spot a Real Estate Scammer

Investing in real estate properties is a serious matter. A lot of money is in the line, which is why you want to make sure that you are dealing with the right individual. Here are some undeniable signs which may help you determine if your contact person is real estate scammer or not.

    1. Price offer is unbelievably lower than others. While some offers discount to be able to sell the property immediately, it usually falls below the 20% range. Anything more than that will be suspicious. Also, a property with a lower price would mean that there are significant trade-offs from the ones within the normal price range. Watch out for the trade offs and if there seems to be none after careful inspection, have some reservations before investing in that property.  If in case you encounter such deal, you can test your real estate agent by asking him or her directly the reason behind the unbelievably lower price offer. Trustworthy agents will likely share with you the honest answers. They know that in order to get good and lasting business relationship, they should only enter business deals with honesty in mind. Just be reminded that if the price is too good to be true, then something is probably wrong with either the property or your agent.

    2. The documents that they will make you sign looks like a DIY. If you’re buying from a big developer, make sure that their logos are clearly printed on the documents. Paper and print quality must be good as well. If it looks like a do-it-yourself kind of document with incorrect grammar, poor type of paper and etc. Then, this must be a clear sign to doubt your real estate agent. Here’s what you can do if you encounter such situation: put on hold the signing of the contract. Ask your agent politely if you can do the contract signing at the head office of the developer or the actual property owner’s location. Explain to him or her that you would like to check the authenticity of the documents first before you sign it. If your agent disagrees, then you may treat it as a red flag. Usually, an authentic real estate agent will grant this simple request for clients, especially if they are already in the further part of the business deal such as the signing of contract. Also, they will never be offended by such request as they would like to assure you too about the authenticity of the documents.

    1. They will never ask you for a site tripping. In the site, the real estate agent will either need a key or a contact person who will allow them to do the site tripping. If you’re dealing with a scammer, they will never offer to give you a house tour. For them, if they can get away with securing a transaction either online or further away from the property, the better. The simple reason behind it is the fact that scammers are not allowed to enter the property. So, if your agent didn’t offer, politely request for a site tripping and make sure that it happens before you even talk about contract signing. Never ever skip this step. It will not only help you determine if your agent is a scammer or not, but it will also help you check if you really want to buy the property. Remember, pictures can sometimes be deceiving. 

    2. They will present a FAKE ID if they have to. Presenting IDs isn’t an assurance of their identity, since IDs can be self-printed nowadays very easily. Here’s an extra step you can do if you want to verify your agent’s identity. If they presented a real estate broker or salesperson ID, their identity can be verified online by searching for their ID number. There should be some sort of database that will verify it for you. Then, check if the name matches their social media pictures (ex.Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and etc.). Just make sure that all of them matches and that there is no bad reviews under their name, and you’re good to go.

  1. They prefer full cash payment instead of checks. Although an exception to this rule is that some developers prefer cash for their reservation fee. Just make sure that they will provide an official receipt or a signed acknowledgement receipt in exchange for the reservation fee. Some developers will even let you deposit the cash straight to the developer’s bank account, so you wouldn’t have to worry that your money will go missing and that it will go right where it’s supposed to be. So, instead of choosing full cash payment, ask your agent on other payment options and choose the safest one. If there seems to be no way other than cash, just make sure that you will hand over the money personally to the property owner or the developer’s billing department.



  • If your agent can’t answer the property specifics, don’t be too quick to judge that he or she is a scammer. Some agents or brokers handle multiple accounts that is why they could only answer basic information. Although this shouldn’t be an excuse, it just means that they forget to do their homework and not necessarily a scammer. If this concerns you, give them a day or two to answer all of your questions. They will usually call you back or arrange another meeting immediately, so that no question will be left unanswered.

Is there is anything that you would like to add, agree or disagree from the points above, hit us up through the comments section below and let’s have a healthy discussion about the topic. Together, let’s help new real estate investors in securing a smooth, stress-free investment deal.

Are we able to help you? Share it to your friends and families through the sharing buttons below.