Is this a Real Estate scam?
I placed my home FSBO on a popular website offering a 3% commission to Realtors. Since then both my phone and e-mail have been bombarded with every kind of scheme you can imagine from both "Realtors" and mortgage brokers. Before I removed the listing, I was getting anywhere from 20-30 calls a day (including a number of recorded messages) from Realtors wanting to list my home "when I get desperate", buyers wanting to know my "lowest price" before even looking at the house and mortgage brokers wanting to work with my buyers with low credit scores.
However, this most recent incident takes the cake in my book. A young Realtor called and said that he had some buyers who were interested in living in my area and my house was in their price range. We made an appointment for them to see my home. Now since I was only doing 1-2 showings a week, I did have to invest a few hours each time someone came to get the house back to show-ready condition (cleaning, putting things away, etc.). Two hours before the showing, he called and rescheduled for a few days later. On the day of the showing, he showed up alone. I asked where the buyers were and he informed me that it was his real estate company that was buying the house. I thought, OK, that might work and I proceeded to show him the house. He did not seem very interested in looking around and barely looked at anything.
I then asked how long it would take for his company to close. That is when he said "six months". To make a long story short, he wanted to list my house and then if it did not sell in six months, they would then buy it, but I had to continue to show the house to buyers he (or other Realtors in his group) brought in. I did not even look at the contract, but I imagine it would be full of out-clauses so that they would not have to purchase after the six-month period (by which time maybe the house would be worth more anyway). He was willing to do this for 3% and what I could not understand was what the difference was between him bringing some buyers in now and earning the 3% and me signing the contract unless he someone makes some money off of other Realtors. Is anyone familiar with this method? I feel he was very dishonest from the get-go, making me believe that he had actual "buyers" interested in the house and this was just a way to get his foot in the door to list my house, but I cannot understand why.
Anyway, I will definitely be listing with a Realtor next time if only to avoid having to deal with all these scam artists and annoying phone calls. You invest considerable time getting your home ready to show each time someone makes an appointment, only to find out when they arrive, that it is just another con.