Dallas Hit With New Wave of Real Estate Scams

What if that real estate agent you are working with is a phony baloney? Or an impostor tried to lease your house right out from under you? From the annals of believe it or not real estate news, this is happening all over the Dallas/ Fort Worth area, warns the Texas Real Estate Commission (TREC) in this pdf.

The Internet, Craigslist and desperation brought on by the housing crisis have made the scammers' jobs a whole lot easier.

Here's what these fake agents are doing: luring people into buying or leasing homes or apartments that are not owned by the postulating "landlord," in the hopes that an eager potential tenant will dash off a check, which they keep. The scammers represent themselves as agents, but don't hold Texas licenses. They accept and keep deposits for properties over which they have no authority or no control. If they claim to be property managers, they swipe large security deposits from tenants, and keep the money. And here's the newest gig: taking deposits or earnest money on properties that they claim are available for a short sale but are actually ten seconds from a foreclosure.

What a racket!