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Pakistan’s real estate landscape has witnessed prodigious growth over the past few years. With countless housing societies opening every other day throughout the country, the buyers are bombarded with innumerable choices to invest for personal and investment purposes. If you are also looking to jump on the real estate bandwagon, then you must be aware Pakistan real estate has as many scams as the number of opportunities. So, yes the picture is not very rosy. But this should not hamper you from making successful investment deals. We will inform you about few of the most common scams practiced in our country and how to evade them, so that in future you seal the deal with full confidence and free from any doubt.
1. Dealers misquote
If you are making a purchase through an agent then make sure you meet the owner. Never make the deal directly with the agent who is not registered or is new in market. There is a huge possibility that these kind of agents will make some sort of scam by misquoting facts, the most common one being, quoting a higher price to the owner, which is an illegal way of earning commission. When you will ask the agents to set a meeting with the buyer, 90% of the time they will come up with excuses that the owner is not in town. Don’t buy these excuses. Meet the owner to verify the documents and ensure that same message is sent across to both the parties- owner and buyer. In case, the agent keeps on making excuses, walk away from the deal.
2. Fake information
In today’s digital world, all the conventional trends have taken a back seat. And this includes buying property through property agents. Property agents are a plethora of hoax. They are sellers, and their job is to show you the perfect picture no matter what the reality is. Ditch it. Take full advantage of digital property portals. They don’t only offer buying and selling opportunities but also keep the audience updated with relevant and honest information pertaining to those opportunities. You can find enough information from different websites to get awareness which can eventually lead to consideration to make a certain purchase. So always do your research on the famous and credible portals to save yourself from the scams a property dealer can do.
3. Title fraud
This scam is pretty much what it sounds like. If person X is selling his property to person Y. The agent tampers with the documents and gets scammed documents made having his name as the new property owner instead of person Y. After all the deposits have been completed, the scammer disappears, leaving you with nothing in hand. To avoid this scam, make sure you go with the agent to the relevant land authority for all sorts of paperwork and approvals at any and every stage of this process. Stay vigilant!
4. Newer societies can at times be a hoax
When it comes to avoiding scams as far as housing societies is concerned, it is very imperative to consider tested and trailed societies. If one of your investment in a society has given good returns it does not mean the same will happen with some other society. All private societies are subject to huge risks. There are only few that are regulated, have delivered to the people of Pakistan for years now and have given good profits. Along with this, liquidity in these credible societies is good. Many societies entice the potential buyers with fake promises and documents. The projects keep hanging in the air and the buyers are left with no option but to wait for the society to fulfill their promises. These promises could be possession or location of property, approval from concerned regulatory body and so on so forth.
5. Payment methods
Making payment through cash can result into a huge scam. If you do your transactions through cash, there is a huge possibility of dealers misreporting the transactions between the buyer and seller. Therefore, always make payment through bank draft instead of cash. By doing so, your payment record is maintained by the respective bank, allowing you to have a transparent payment procedure. In case, you end up in an unforeseen and unfortunate situation, where the project on which you invested the money turns out to be fake, the bank draft can help you pursue your case with the law enforcement authorities.