If you’ve been ripped off by scammers, get in touch and our team of experts will work to get your money back
Performing preliminary checks to assess whether the case can result in a substantial recovery, based on our experience.
Collecting all the information and documentation required to successfully pursue your case[*]All of the gathered information is for internal use only. General information such as email address might be used to reach out to people with similar circumstances.
Systematically confronting the relevant entities that have facilitated the illicit transfer of your wealth.
We take pride in our track record and assure you that we’ll go to great lengths to get your money back.
The fund recovery process can be a lengthy one and requires perseverance. Therefore it is vital that our clients are ready for it and trust us every step of the way. So if for any reason you are doubtful, you can ask for a full refund within the first 14 business days of the process.**Read Terms & Conditions
Property scams vary greatly in how they are executed, but they all aim to steal money from unsuspecting individuals who are interested in renting, buying, or leasing a property. In these types of scams, the fraudsters often pose as property owners, landlords, real estate agencies, property management companies, or other property-adjacent businesses to trick their victims into handing over money or sensitive financial and personal information that they can use to steal from them.
Don’t pay anything upfront to view a property or before you have a written and signed contract that is approved by a lawyer or an independent expert.
Don’t share any personal information, such as your social security number or bank account number, with anyone until you’re sure a deal is real.
Always view properties in person and make sure they match the listing you saw, both in appearance and description.
Do your own research to verify the authenticity of rental or property sale companies.
Don’t give in to high-pressure sales tactics, especially for refinancing your mortgage or paying for foreclosure relief services.
In escrow wire fraud scams, the fraudsters typically gain access to an email account associated with a real estate sale that’s currently in progress. They usually do this through some sort of phishing attack targeted at a real estate agent, a lender, a title agent, or a buyer. They then contact the buyer at the appropriate point in the sale process and pose as someone from the title or escrow company, asking the buyer to wire funds to a bank account. They then disappear with the wired funds.
Loan flipping scams involve ill-intentioned lenders convincing homeowners to repeatedly refinance their mortgage, borrowing more money each time. This results in the property owners eventually ending up with more loans than they can realistically afford to pay off, and the malicious lender earns more and more in fees and interest.
In foreclosure relief scams, the scammers target people who have homes in foreclosure by advertising foreclosure relief services or acquiring lists of properties in foreclosure. They promise to help the victims keep their homes for a fee, but never actually provide the foreclosure relief they promised.
Moving companies have also been known to commit fraud in a number of ways. For example, they may demand cash upfront and then never provide moving services or they might not give you a written estimate and then charge you much more than you agreed on for a move. Or, they might get you to sign a blank contract for the moving services and charge you an exorbitant sum after moving. Moving scammers have even been known to hold belongings hostage until you’ve paid them whatever they want.
Buying or renting a commercial property comes along with the risks of different types of commercial real estate scams. Scammers may pose as property owners and demand money upfront to see a property, then never appear to actually meet you in person. Or, they might show you a property that’s different from the one you saw online. Other commercial real estate scammers forge documents in order to obtain sensitive data from you that they can use to steal funds or your identity.
Real estate scammers sometimes work with home inspectors to commit fraud. Fraudulent home inspectors will tell you everything is alright with a property in exchange for a fee from a scam real estate agency, so you end up paying way more than something is worth and are stuck with expensive repairs down the road. Alternatively, scammers might just pose as home inspectors and charge you for inspections, when they really have no idea what they are doing.
In title and deed scams, the scammers attempt to illegitimately transfer the ownership of a property to someone else, without the real property owners knowing about it. They can do this by altering real deeds and titles with different names. They may then use the altered titles and deeds to sell the property to an unsuspecting buyer or to borrow money against your property.
Scammers often place fake property listings on rental sites, or copy existing listings from them, and use these to trick interested renters into giving them money as a deposit for a showing. Of course, they never show up to the property to give you a tour — if the property even exists at all.
Fake letting agents and landlords show potential renters around spoof properties, then ask them for a deposit or a month’s rent upfront. They then disappear with all the money before the victims realize that the individuals weren’t who they say they were and weren’t authorized to rent the property or receive payments for it.
Scammers sometimes use the excuse that they are “overseas” as a reason to ask interested renters for holding deposits in order to not rent a property to someone else before the interested party views it. The properties usually don’t exist or the listings are clones of real listings that are instead operated by fraudsters.
In property phishing scams, the fraudsters send out bulk emails pretending to be someone from a rental or letting agency. They ask the receivers to pay rent or other fees for their rentals through a fake online portal or by providing credit card details due to some type of fake issue that they invent.
Though less common than online property rental listing scams, some printed listings you see in newspapers or flyers may also be fake. Scammers use these to lure in unsuspecting victims and try to get upfront payments from them to see or hold a property.
Fraudsters also use Facebook to place fake listings for properties for sale or rent. The scammers pose as landlords, real estate agents, or property owners and invent various reasons why they need upfront payments to show you a property.
Craigslist is another online property listing site where scams occur. The scammers use the same tactics as elsewhere, posting fake rental or for-sale listings and tricking victims into sending them deposits, holding fees, or other upfront payments.
In more complex property site scams, the con artists will even go to the lengths of setting up a whole fake website for property listings. They may even clone the websites of legitimate listing companies, real estate agencies, property management companies, or rental agencies.
The property itself looks like a scam. Any property you actually go view should look like it does in the pictures you saw online and match the listing description.
Lack of proper documentation. Scammers often create bogus documents designed to steal information from you or trick you into thinking a sale or rental is legit.
The property “owners” or “landlords” won’t meet you in person.
Movers won’t provide you with a written estimate and contract for moving services.
Foreclosure relief service companies contact you out of the blue.
Someone is using high-pressure sales tactics to ask you for money upfront, get you to refinance a mortgage, or get you to sign up for foreclosure release services.
You can’t verify whether a real estate company is real or not by looking them up online.
If you’ve fallen victim to one of the many types of property scams out there, you might feel like all is lost — but it isn’t necessarily true. Fund recovery specialists, like ours at Payback LTD, have extensive experience retrieving stolen funds after various real estate and rental scams. For the highest probability of getting your money back, contact our team right away to start looking at the evidence and reviewing your case. We will do everything in our power to pressure the scammers into returning your money.
Never pay anything upfront before you’ve seen a property and are sure the deal is legit. No one should ever charge you anything in order to show you a property you’re interested in renting or buying.
Have a lawyer or a real estate agent review all contracts for sales or rentals before you sign anything.
Be aware of current market values for renting and buying in your area. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Don’t give out personal details or financial information online or over the phone.
Don’t wire funds after being contacted by email or phone. If you’re in the process of buying a property, go to the office of the agency you’re working with and do it in person.
Do your research about property companies or individuals selling or renting properties. Google their names and check any reviews to make sure they are legit and have not already been flagged as scammers.
Always meet landlords or sellers and view a property in person before you commit to anything.
Hire your own property inspector before buying a property and make sure they are certified and have good reviews. If you can get a personal reference for one, that’s ideal.
Make sure to get a written estimate and have both parties sign a contract when you hire movers.
Don’t give in to pressure to refinance your mortgage and borrow more money when it’s not necessary.
Properties that don’t match listings, landlords that won’t meet you in person, and individuals or companies who demand up-front payments are all red flags of different types of property rental scams.
Know what the market values of properties in your area are and don’t believe any deals that sound too good to be true. Have a lawyer, real estate agent, or other reputable expert examine any sale contracts for inconsistencies and errors before signing anything.
Besides rental and sale scams, there are also foreclosure relief scams, home inspection scams, moving scams, loan flipping scams, title and deed scams, commercial real estate scams, and phishing property scams to be aware of.
Yes! Many people who have fallen victim to a property scam have successfully retrieved their stolen funds by working with a fund recovery firm, like Payback LTD. Fund recovery specialists are familiar with the ins and outs of the many different property scams out there and know how to track down and put pressure on the scammers.
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