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From first time homeowners looking for the ideal starter home to experienced investors searching for the proverbial diamond in the rough, house buyers in south Florida are a varied bunch. While home buyers differ due to their methods and motives for securing a sale, they are mostly comprised of local buyers willing to pay the fair market price for a property. Unfortunately, there are too many illegitimate buyers in the south Florida area and recognizing their poor buying behaviors is a vital tool for home-selling success.
While most house buyers are sincere individuals, some are professional scammers with little interest in purchasing the property for more than mere pennies. These scammers often pose as would-be cash buyers and aim to swindle inexperienced sellers. They employ numerous methods to force unsuspecting sellers into deals heavily favoring the buyer. Though the appearance of scammers and their tactics differ, there are a few key signs to look for when determining the legitimacy of a buyer.
A legitimate local home buyer will insist on acquiring as much information about the property as possible. This will often include home inspections or general visits. Even cash buyers in search of a quick sale will gather all the pertinent information about a home via updated sites, continual contact with the seller, and home visits. If a potential buyer initiates a sale without inquiring about the state of the home or an inspection, they may be a scammer. While many out-of-area buyers aren’t opposed to purchasing property sight unseen, local buyers will capitalize on the close proximity and familiarize themselves with the home pre-purchase. To avoid these scammers, keep an eye out for buyers that forgo asking questions about the property.
Another sign of a professional scammer includes the buyer’s general unavailability. There are innumerable reasons why an interested party will cancel in-person meetings or phone calls. However, legitimate house buyers will reschedule appointments whereas scammers will provide an endless amount of excuses. To legitimize their claims, these scammers may even insist on contacting an attorney on their behalf to begin a property sale. Don’t be fooled; a local home buyer will eagerly await your call, email, or snail-mail and will leave the tedious paperwork to a realtor representing their interests.
A lot of professional scammers make the mistake of offering too much personal information upfront. While sincere house buyers provide the necessary financial information after submitting an offer or cementing the sale, scammers unnecessarily share their detailed financial history to the sellers. They will occasionally attach bank statements or other sensitive records to emails and offer heaps of personal information via phone calls. Though a bond between buyer and seller can ease the difficult homeownership transition, scammers will abuse that relationship without remorse. Steer clear of buyers that offer too much personal information upon inquiry.
While the majority of investors in the area are interested in legally purchasing dilapidated homes to rehab for a major profit, there is a growing number of scammers pretending to be local real estate investors. They will persuade an owner to put their home under contract without earnest money. These carefully crafted contracts will include hidden clauses to allow the investor to back out without any penalty, though their goal is to resell to a legitimate buyer for more money. Sometimes these deals go through and the seller is none the wiser to the scammer’s antics. However, in most cases, the deals fall apart, forcing the seller to spend more time and money on attracting a new buyer. When needing to sell their home fast, homeowners can’t afford to deal with professional scammers.
Thankfully, there are a few identifiers to single out the unwanted scammers. One major red flag for identifying illegal investors is the quality of their advertising. If their firm uses cheap or free advertising, the investor is more interested in appealing to desperate homeowners than purchasing a property. Legitimate house buyers will invest ample money into advertising to build a relationship with their community. Another identifier includes the investor’s professionalism. Sincere home buying companies utilize websites, paid emails, and other means to share their business; scammers will skip the key components of establishing a company and, instead, use high-pressure tactics to force a sale. If an investor is pressuring you to sign documents while discouraging a coherent explanation, they’re probably a professional scammer.
As sellers become more aware of nightmare house buyers, their scamming methods become ineffective and obsolete. If you’re unsure of a buyer’s legitimacy, consult outside professionals or authenticate their claims with a little research. Remember, if a cash offer seems too good to be true, it very well could be.
While professional scammers plague novice sellers, the majority of home buyers are a professional and thoughtful bunch. Legitimate buyers like Nader Atoui of South Florida have key indicators to set them apart from others. For example, serious buyers will attend open houses, sometimes visiting their ideal home multiple times before submitting an offer. When visiting an open house, these buyers will ask about pertinent information, comment on what they love, and remain on their overall best behavior. Asking serious questions about potential renovation costs or cosmetic changes means they’re more serious about the buy. If the prospective buyer envisions the property as theirs already, that’s a good sign they’re legitimate.
Legitimate buyers will also appear to appreciate your property by noticing the minute details upon viewing. If a house buyer takes note of the home’s craftsmanship, features, or general condition of the property, they’re probably a knowledgeable homeowner in search of the real deal. The buyer’s attention to detail and appreciation will assist in their ability to respect the asking price. These more seasoned buyers will submit their best offer first and skip testing the seller with low bids. While a low bid isn’t necessarily a sign of a professional scammer, earnest candidates will submit their best price upfront to signify their seriousness.
Perhaps the biggest indicator of a legitimate buyer is about the financial aspect of home buying. If a buyer’s finances are sorted and ready before needed, they are serious about acquiring your property. Mortgage pre-qualifications and pre-approvals can be difficult to obtain and aren’t needed at initial showings. However, any serious buyer will more than likely have official financial documents prepared and ready to submit with any offer. If a buyer can submit financial records to ensure a sale quickly after identifying the home they want, they’re legitimate.
Identifying a serious buyer from a scammer is vital to successfully selling a home. To ensure I’m attracting legitimate buyers when I need to sell my house fast, I inquire about local home buying companies in the Palm Beach, Broward and surrounding areas. Unlike singling out buyers via the housing market and online home sites, these companies are serious investors with verified references, readied finances, and a professional demeanor.
Cedar’s Investment Properties, a local house-buying juggernaut in south Florida, appreciates the seller by visiting their property, keeping in contact, and offering a fair price after careful consideration. Cedar’s Investment Properties also answers a seller’s questions and concerns to provide better customer service prior to a sale. If you want to avoid professional scammers and seek the services of a serious buyer, contact Nader Atoui at 954-774-8506.