Foreign Buyer/Investor




How the scam works:

In today’s housing market it can be difficult to sell a home (or even a restaurant). Many homeowners looking to relocate are finding themselves sitting on a home they are unable to move. Therefore, when they receive an offer of purchase they are usually so excited that they fail to see that it might be too good to be true.

A scam making the rounds these days takes advantage of homeowners’ eagerness to close the sale and relocate. The scam involves a supposed interested buyer from China (Hong Kong) who needs to relocate to the United States, Canada, Great Britain, or Australia and is willing to purchase a property sight unseen.



The scammer, who has a crime partner in one of the countries mentioned above, will send a cashier’s check to the attorney set up to handle the escrow. The forgery is very realistic so the home seller and attorney believe this check to be real. They will then send a communication to the attorney stating that they sent too much and they need $10,000 wired back to a foreign account.

Of course, once the funds are wired, the seller never hears from the “buyer” again and they are stuck, waiting to move and out $10,000.

Watch the video below to learn some tips on how to avoid the fake cashier’s check fraud.



Tips To Avoid Fake Checks Fraud Video

 

How to avoid the Foreign Investor scam:

First, beware of doing business with anyone claiming to be in such dire need for housing that they are willing to buy a home sight unseen. This is the first red flag. The best line of defense is to do an internet search of the buyer’s name.

Many people who do this will discover that these scammers are so brazen they will use the same name to perpetuate this scam over and again. Doing a name search often turns up information about the scam, and the communications they have sent you are typically quoted word for word.



Working with a real estate agent is often the best way to avoid these scams, as they are often well-versed in these types of schemes. Trying to sell a home in a down economy can be complicated. In your eagerness to sell, don’t be so anxious to make a sale that you put your common sense on hold. If something appears too good to be true, it most likely is.

 

How to report the Foreign Investor scam:

Make your family and friends aware of this scam by sharing it on social media using the buttons provided. You can also officially report the scammers to the Federal Trade Commission using the link below:

Report To The FTC Here

 

How to protect yourself more:

If you want to be the first to find out the most notorious scams every week, feel free to subscribe to the Scam Detector newsletter here. You’ll receive periodical emails and we promise not to spam. Last but not least, use the Comments section below to expose other scammers.

 

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4 thoughts on “Foreign Buyer/Investor”

  1. I am selling a property in canada, this is the first email I received:

    my husband Chen and I are very desirous to make this purchase of property in advance for my retirement. I will be available to give you more information as I have already viewed the pics of the property before contacting you, we are aware that property market needs some urgency. Also, please can you by E-mail provide us with steps that we follow so as to close this transaction as quickly as possible.

    Thank you very much,
    Luli Huang fu

    It is funny, his english was much better as we went along,

    hank you very much, we currently live in China, please may I say here that we [my husband and I] will not be able to present ourselves for any inspection at the moment because of our duties. Instead, we will appreciate it if you can devise a means to go about this while we are ready to pay for any services that this may involve. For the property, we will be paying cash from our savings as soon as everything falls in our satisfaction. We will expect that since our situation may appear peculiar you help us make things work out well in our satisfaction.

    Let us know what documents you will need upon settling on the property choice so we know in advance what renovation will be required. But we want to know what steps will be employed to represent our interest over there, and will require a legal representative as a way of closing the transaction. At the moment my husband is working offshore in an oil rig with Exxon Mobil in UK and cannot speak to you on telephone as we would love to. Please E-mail me back to confirm the way forward.

    hanks for your E-mail I appreciate, I’m interested in buying this property I will be very glad to go into a contract with you, I checked all our previous e-mail but could not find the lawyers details you claim you sent. I will prefer a lawyer provided by you to write the contract agreement as the lawyer will be the only person I will be making such huge payment to by check for my own good and for security reasons. I will be expecting the lawyers response with the written contract. I will want you to acknowledge this and add up all other necessary charges to the total amount and send to me as I will be making the payment all at once and to only a legal body (lawyer provided by you) in cash (check).

    Finally ended when I told him that cheques were not acceptable, he would have to wire the funds…..

  2. On Monday, March 23, 2015, John wrote:

    In the sequence of the comment above, reporting the scam of Bellview Properties, i receive phone contacts, messages and emails of Kampel Paul Muller, phone contacts 0033609814007, 0032485719460, 00442071129376, 00442071129378, email paul.k@financier.com , threatening my integrity and my honor. I quote "you’ll have many problems if not you cancel this comment, we will travel to Lisbon know what is your address and you will have many problems with us."
    Bellview properties is a front where alexander el elani says that is a british company operating in Central Europe to defraud who fall into their conversation.
    I have been life threat!

  3. In the sequence of the comment above, reporting the scam of Bellview Properties, i receive phone contacts, messages and emails of Kampel Paul Muller, phone contacts 0033609814007, 0032485719460, 00442071129376, 00442071129378, email paul.k@financier.com , threatening my integrity and my honor. I quote "you’ll have many problems if not you cancel this comment, we will travel to Lisbon know what is your address and you will have many problems with us."
    Bellview properties is a front where alexander el elani says that is a british company operating in Central Europe to defraud who fall into their conversation.
    I have been life threat!

  4. I was contacted by Mr Paul Mulder of Bellview company to buy a restaurant that i was selling in Lisbon. Saing that exist total interest in buying the restaurant and mark a meeting with Mr Alexander El Elani of Bellview properties. Mr Alexander El Elani insist that the offer was serious and real and insist to go a Brussels to make the last details and, if agreement, close the contract.

    The meeting was scheduled for the hotel Steingerberger and when I got there the offer changed conditions. To buy the restaurant they need a favor; wanted half of the amount of the selling price in small notes to trade for 500 euros notes, offering 20% commission. They also accepted gold and the delivery had to be in Brussels or Amsterdam for there Russian and Arab Customers.

    He also said that had a chinese/portuguese person that do this for them and because of the Gold Visa scandolous they loose the network and need someone to help them! Obviously, immediately realize the scheme and the great risk involved in giving them money.

    In the following weeks continued to insist on the purchase of the property, and get down from 75 000 to 1000 euro transfer money! Sayin that was a proof of safety and confidence!
    The sale would take place only with the completion of favor asked, it was money laundering through the exchange of euro banknotes.

    I lose the costs of travel to Brussels that were never reimbursed me and I knew of another Burla scheme by this London company that operates in Brussels and Amsterdam.
    Extortion and money laundering by creating a scam to a seller owner of a motionless. Enjoying the business of selling to pose as buyers, agree with the sales conditions and after the last change the conditions to show trust and requests for cash values of small notes for money laundering.

    Very careful with this network.

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