A New Scam Braemar Home Sellers Need to Know About
I was reading through some real estate blogs this morning and came across a post from a friend of mine in Portland, OR. What I read shocked me. Apparently, the Portland, OR MLS sent out a warning about thieves looking for actively listed properties that they could easily gain access to by posing as appraisers. Home owners would not give a second thought to letting an appraiser in the home. Gives you cold chills, doesn’t it?
Appraisers don’t just knock on doors without warning. As an Associate Broker with Long & Foster REALTORS® in Gainesville, VA, I can tell you with 100% certainty that when a home is listed for sale, unless it is a Short Sale, there will be no appraiser coming by your home until AFTER it goes under contract. Furthermore, when an appraiser DOES need access your property, they will contact the Listing Agent for access. Therefore, your agent will know when the appraiser is coming by, who they are and what company they represent.
When your Braemar home is on the market, do not let anyone in the home without prior knowledge if they are claiming to be an appraiser. For that matter, even if a buyer were to show up at your doorstep, without an agent, hand them your Listing Agent’s phone number to schedule an appointment. No buyer should be touring your home without their own agent, or your Listing Agent present.
Getting a description of anyone claiming to be an appraiser needing access to your Braemar home, when there was no advance notice of their visit, would be helpful to local authorities. Calling the police with a description of the vehicle they were driving and even the plate numbers would be ideal. Certainly, I wouldn’t expect a thief posing as an appraiser to give you their name, company and phone number, but you can certainly ask for it to pass along to the authorities.
I sincerely hope this is a scam that we never hear being perpetrated in Braemar. Of course, when armed with the knowledge of the potential scam, Braemar home sellers are less likely to fall victim to it.
Chris Ann Cleland, Associate Broker-Licensed in VA, Long & Foster REALTORS®