©Stuart Miles - freedigitalphotos

©Stuart Miles – freedigitalphotos

With the rise in home foreclosure and millions of Americans needing help, you will find a rise in real estate investors.  There are plenty of honest investors who can help you locate great deals on properties or teach you to become a successful investor.  You will even find people who specialize in purchasing homes to help individuals stop foreclosure.

There are also plenty of investors who will take advantage of people in need, using them and trying to turn a quick buck.  When you find yourself close to foreclosure and don’t know what to do, it is an easy time to be convinced by some con investors that they know how to help you.  They can talk you into selling your property for pennies on the dollar, or even to invest in their latest real estate course, promising you millions.

Some of the shadier real estate investors will harasses you will emails, making all kinds of promises.  Remember if you get an email that promises to teach you how to be a millionaire, it is likely a scam.   When you hear all kinds of promises of unlimited wealth on late-night infomercials, those are the con artists.

One of the most common real estate scams comes from investors who offer to purchase your home and help you stop foreclosure.  They talk to distraught homeowners and promise to solve all their financial problems.  If you are facing foreclosure and someone promises you a solution that sounds to good to be true, it probably is.  There are plenty of legitimate investors that can help you though.

So how can you tell the difference between an honest investor and scam artist?  Well, see how they approach you;  Honest investors usually don’t contact you, they wait for you to contact them. It’s up to you to seek out an investor, or find a reputable company who can find one for you; usually a Realtor or investment firm.  If you’re in foreclosure and you need an investor to purchase your home through a short sale, try asking friends and family if they know anyone.  Getting a referral from someone your trust is the best way to be sure that your getting honest help.  At the very least, do some research on the Internet, look for reputable private real estate investors or investment companies.  Google the companies you’re thinking of working with; see if there are any reviews on the company and what people say.

Another real estate scam that people seem to fall for is the sale of expensive investment courses.  These are the courses that promise to teach you insider secrets and show you how to purchase a home with no-money down.  When you hear people say they can teach you to purchase a home with no money down, that should tip you off right away that it is a scam.  Purchasing these out of date real estate courses will sink you further into debt.

If you look around online you can find many real estate investing courses for free or possible a small fee.  Look at reputable Realtors or private investor websites, for these classes.  Or try watching some free online real estate investment movies, you might find all the tips your looking for there. But stay away from “free seminars”, unless they are sponsored by a charity or a program that has nothing to sell. Most “free seminars” are a scam to get you locked in a room so they can use high pressure sales tactics to sell you on their product!

Be aware of the biggest real estate scam of all time, which is the promise of great wealth by investing in foreclosure homes.  These con artists claim they can teach where and how to buy distressed properties, for half their market value.  All you have to do is give them several hundred dollars and they will teach you their ways.  This is a complete scam and they are just trying to get money from.  You can locate these properties for free by making a trip to your local county Recorder’s office.

Overall, try to keep your sensors on and be aware that there are plenty of people who would love to take advantage of you.  Don’t just say yes, with out doing the proper research.  If people are offering to teach how to become a successful investor, or offer to help you save your home from foreclosure, think twice about doing business with them.  Take the time to ensure the person you are working with has the proper credentials and solid track record.

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