So you are off to buy your dream home. From walk-in visits to hiring a home inspector Calgary AB. The negotiations are done, and the deal is about to close. Now comes the scary part: making the payments, especially in Alberta, where the median for monetary fraud is $1.25 million based on a 2019-research. It is normal to fear being a victim of real estate fraud. Fret not; here are six tips to help you.
Double-check the instructions
The first step is to double-check the original documents the seller has given you. Confirm the wiring instructions before doing it. You can use the numbers listed on the document to do the same. Above all, avoid clicking on any text or e-mail links asking you to transfer money.
Notice the red flag of rushing
The red flag in the process is getting wiring instructions different from the one you already have. Yet another alerting thing is if the vendor is rushing you to transfer to the new account details. Make sure you call the seller and confirm the account details and fund transfer.
Give a call first
Even if the wiring instructions haven’t been changed, give your seller a call before the transfer to confirm all the details. Moreover, ask them to call you once they receive the fund. Doing so gives both you and them assurance and prevent being part of real estate fraud.
Avoid e-mailing documents
When it comes to sharing financial information, especially sellers, it is better to stick to in-person meetings or phone calls. E-mailing such sensitive information can be risky with the possibility of phishers stealing them. The best option is writing the details down on a paper to prevent any possible risk.
Hang up on calls
Fraudulent calls are quite common these days. As such, you may receive calls asking to confirm your identity or for your account details. Trust your gut and hang up on such calls. Make sure you confirm anything and everything with a trusted party from the original documents.
Familiarise with closing
Lastly, the most important way to deter real estate fraud is knowing about the closing process. A lot of people are scammed because of their unfamiliarity with what happens. Therefore, do your research on a property purchase to help you spot any red flags later.
Real estate purchases can be scary and downright risky with fraudulent schemes. However, most of these crimes happen because the involved party does not have enough knowledge and is easy to misguide. Therefore, the first step towards not becoming a victim of real estate fraud is research about the process.