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CatFish Buyers Targeting Realtors

Updated: Feb 16


Image above courtesy "Catfish"


There are a number of people running scams, fraud, phishing, viruses, malware, etc. targeting real estate agents (many of whom are Realtors in the US) these days. If you look online, you'll find many examples (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) of agents who have wasted time or been scammed and were catfished by people posing as buyers. The majority of times, these buyers don't do anything in person and never show their face, while the minority of times, they might actually go to properties with people. In this article, I wanted to focus on those that never show their face since they are so much more common than those that do.


In this post, I wanted to share more about how I was in the original movie "Catfish", fake buyers targeting real estate agents including but not limited to how to spot them, how to respond to the issue, & if I'm sending you this post after you've reached out to me about buying, why I am doing so. In order to help you skip around, I'm using 3 sections that you can expand or contract to skip to the next section.


I. What is a Catfish & My appearance in the movie "Catfish"

II. Why I'm Sending You This Post if You've Reached out to Me About a Purchase

III. How to Spot Catfish Buyers & How to Respond to the Signs of It

1. Most often they won't want to show their face to you on live video or do anything in person, & are often reluctant to audio

2. Most often they reach out to you over social media, email, or via text rather than a call.

3. Most often High Price Range

4. Most often they are reportedly cash buyers

5. Most often, exactly how they want to scam you won't be clear until you've wasted a lot of time

6. Most Often English Errors & Holes in Statements if Responding Directly (Vs From a Template Where They Don't Respond Directly Where English Errors Are Reduced)

7. Often they want to shift away from typical methods of written communication (i.e. to Whatsapp, Skype or Telegram).

8. Often they dodge direct answers to questions

9. Often unusually flexible location parameters

10. Sometimes they provide non-working #s.

10. Sometimes they supposedly made money quickly through investments such as crypto-currency & often offer you unsolicited "investment advice"

11. Sometimes they reach out to you by "accident" or mentioning a vague prior connection

12. Sometimes opposite gender using attractive images

13. Sometimes they'll ask you if they can pay with crypto

14. Sometimes they send you a link or attachment

For information on Catfish Sellers, go to my article on the subject here.


Related to typically virtual elements of legitimate buyers:


Pertinent for Buyers:

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