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  • Geebo 9:00 am on November 13, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , deeds, ,   

    Scammer sells own father’s house out from under him 

    By Greg Collier

    A man from the Houston, Texas, area is currently on the run from the law after failing to appear for his court appearance. The suspect had been arrested for allegedly selling properties that didn’t belong to him, including one that belonged to his father.

    The suspect’s father allowed his son to stay at the father’s condo. The suspect forged the documents necessary to put the house in his name before selling the condo, and keeping the money for himself. This incident is said to be when the suspect realized he could sell other properties he didn’t own.

    The suspect was able to con his way into transferring the ownership of at least two multi-million dollar properties into his name. According to reports, the suspect would forge deeds and notary signatures in order to steal the properties. The plan was to sell the properties for pennies on the dollar before the actual owners could find out. Properties that had no financial liens on them were said to be the suspect’s main targets.

    A realtor became suspicious when one of their clients was trying to buy a $5 million property for less than half of the market value. This property was being sold by the suspect, which he didn’t actually own. When the realtor contacted police, they found the suspect was trying to sell another property he didn’t own.

    Unfortunately, this is not an isolated incident. We’ve posted before about victims who were told to leave their homes after scammers submitted forged deeds to the county showing they were the new owners. We’ve also shared stories about vacant lots being targeted in similar scams. If you own a property outright, you may want to pay attention to scams like this.

    Thankfully, there is a way to protect yourself. It’s recommended you go to your county appraiser’s website regularly to monitor the ownership of your property. If your county appraiser does not have a website, you can go to their office. Some counties even have a program where you can be alerted if anything changes on your deed.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on October 30, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , deeds, fake notary, ,   

    How to lose your home to a scammer without even trying 

    How to lose your home to a scammer without even trying

    By Greg Collier

    You would think it must be pretty difficult for someone to steal your home out from under you without you noticing. However, it might be easier than you’d imagine.

    A homeowner from St. Louis recently lost ownership of her house to a scammer she never even met. Allegedly, a man went to the Recorder of Deeds with a quitclaim deed which said the homeowner turned the house over to the man for no cost. The man even presented a notarized deed that indicated the homeowner was present when the supposed deal was made. Except, the notary who is said to have officiated over the transfer doesn’t even exist. There is no record of this notary being licensed in Missouri.

    You might assume that once the error was caught, the deed transfer would be cancelled, but the Recorder of Deeds office claims they did nothing wrong. They say it’s not their job to make sure the notary on the deed is licensed. Their excuse is they have 60,000 documents they process in a year, and it’s not their requirement to check each notary.

    Suffice to say, the homeowner is suing both the man who claimed the deed and the Recorder of Deeds office.

    This type of title scam can occur in various locations. We would like to emphasize that while we wish we could provide a foolproof method to shield yourself from such a scam, the effectiveness of protection depends on your place of residence. Certain counties in the US have implemented a program that alerts homeowners via email if any documents bearing their name concerning their property appear in county offices. Unfortunately, not every county offers this service.

    If you have concerns about falling victim to such a scam, it’s advisable to investigate whether your county has a comparable program in place. If not, you may want to consider reaching out to your county authorities and suggesting the implementation of such a safeguard.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on March 24, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , deeds, , ,   

    Forged deed costs man his home 

    Forged deed costs man his home

    By Greg Collier

    Almost two weeks ago, we brought you the story of a man who was conned into signing over to someone who sold the home out from under him. But what if we told you your house could be sold without you even signing anything? That’s precisely what happened to a man in New Orleans.

    Much like the man from our previous story, this man lived in the home with his mother. After she passed away, he started renovating his home. While he was putting money into home improvements, someone forged the deed to his home and sold the man’s house.

    This wasn’t just a simple case of forging one signature to get possession of the home, either. Not only did the scammer forge the homeowners name, but the names of a notary and several witnesses were also forged. Additionally, the notary’s stamp was forged as well.

    One might assume that since both the homeowner and notary attest their signatures were forged, the man would be getting the deed to his home returned. Unfortunately, that is not the case. The homeowner is in the middle of legal proceedings to have the ownership of his home returned to him, and the legal costs to do so are not cheap.

    This kind of title scam could happen anywhere. We wish we could say there was an ironclad way to protect yourself from such a scam, but it depends on where you live. Some of the Parishes in Louisiana have a program where if the Parish receives any documentation bearing the homeowner’s name appears in their offices about their property, the homeowner will receive an email alert about it. Several counties across the U.S. have this service also, but not every county does.

    If you’re concerned about being scammed like this, check to see if your county has a program like this. If they don’t, consider getting in touch with your county and recommend it to them.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on March 13, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , deeds, ,   

    Elderly man signed away house for $10, now faces eviction 

    By Greg Collier

    As we’re sure you’re aware of, we typically discuss scams on this blog. However, today’s story doesn’t meet the legal requirement of being called a scam, but can still serve as a warning to those who may find themselves in a similar position.

    A 66-year-old man living on the east coast of Florida lost his mother in 2020. He took her passing very hard and got behind on his mortgage payments. With the real estate market being what it is, the bank started to foreclose on the home.

    Not knowing what to do, the man reached out to an acquaintance for help. The acquaintance allegedly told the man that he would take over the mortgage payments while allowing the man to live in his home. The man then signed a deed which transferred ownership to the acquaintance for $10. However, unknown to the man, the deed gave the acquaintance the right to sell the home if he chose to.

    Eventually, the acquaintance did sell the home, stating the home was too much of a headache. The acquaintance sold the house to a real estate investor. The investor flipped the house by selling it to a New York company for $185,000. Meanwhile, the elderly man not only got nothing out of the sale of his home, but was also being evicted from the home he owned for 23 years.

    The man’s neighbors say that the man is mentally challenged and was taken advantage of by all parties involved. Unfortunately, the courts have ruled that everything was legal, and the eviction can move forward. Meanwhile, the man is trying to sell some of his mother’s possessions to make a little money.

    When dealing with any transaction that involves your home, you should have an attorney look over the paperwork before signing anything. If you can’t afford an attorney, some attorneys give free consultations, or you can reach out to a local law school to see if they have a program where students give free legal advice. There are also some non-profits known as legal aid societies that provide legal help to low-income families and individuals.

  • Geebo 9:00 am on February 13, 2023 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , deeds, ,   

    Deed scam tries to scare homeowners 

    By Greg Collier

    Homeowners in the Nashville, Tennessee area have been receiving some disturbing letters in the mail recently. Just imagine receiving a letter in the mail that says the deed to your property has been transferred to someone else and the transfer has been recorded with your county’s deeds office. Thankfully, the letters are part of a scam, but they’re designed to get the homeowner to panic.

    The letters appear to come from the local County Register of Deeds office. They go on to state the homeowner can obtain a copy of the supposed new deed by paying a fee to a supposed service in Florida. So, not only are the scammers hoping on getting an $89 payment from their victims, but if a victim pays by debit or credit card, the scammers will have their financial information as well.

    This scam preys on the fear of another scam where people have lost ownership of their own homes. Previously, some homeowners have been tricked into signing over the deed to their homes to a scammer. The scammer tells them they can avoid being foreclosed on if they sign the deed over to a third party. This typically results in the homeowner being evicted from their home by the scammers.

    In a similar scam, scammers have sent phony tax forms to homeowners asking them to fill the forms out. The scammers then use the information taken from these forms to try to get the deed reassigned to the scammer.

    If you receive a letter like this, the first thing you should do is contact your county deeds office to see if there is any legitimacy to the letter. In some counties, including Tennessee’s Davidson County, where you can sign up for property alerts. This way you can be notified if any action is being taken against your property.

  • Geebo 8:00 am on August 26, 2021 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: deeds, Donda, Kanye West, , , , unclaimed reward,   

    Scam Round Up: House Deeds, Kanye, and more 

    Scam Round Up: House Titles, Kanye, and more

    By Greg Collier

    We’re back again with a handful of scams that may require your attention. This week, we’re bringing you four scams that have popped up around the country.


    If you own a home, and you want a copy of your home’s deed, you shouldn’t have to pay to get it. In most counties, you can get a copy of your deed for free at your county’s Register of Deeds’ office, or your county’s equivalent. If there is any cost attached to obtaining your deed, it should only be for the copier and not cost $95. In Tennessee, residents have been receiving letters saying they can get their deed for a $95 fee. Deeds are public records, and the scammers wait for changes to be made to them before sending out the letters offering their service. While not necessarily illegal, if you get one of these letters, shred it and toss it in the recycling.


    We’re not sure how many of are readers are fans of Kanye West, but he’s been teasing a new album drop for a while now. Scammers are quite aware of this and are using the new album to their advantage. Scammers are setting up websites where they claim you can download Kanye’s new album entitled ‘Donda’. As you might expect, the files you end up downloading contain malware, which can do any number of malicious things to your device. As with any popular media, if you’re purchasing it online, stick to reputable distributors like Apple and Amazon and avoid the shady bootleg sites.


    Police in Hillsboro, Texas have reported a significant increase in virtual kidnapping calls. Residents there have been receiving phone calls that tell them a loved one has been kidnapped. They’re then instructed to go to Walmart to await further instructions. The scammers will then have the victim send the ‘ransom’ through a money transfer service like MoneyGram that is untraceable once the scammers have their money. If you ever receive a call like this, try not to panic. Instead, reach out to the supposed kidnap victim, and you’ll probably find that they’re ok. You should also notify your local police as well.


    Lastly, from North Carolina, we have a scam where a man received a letter in the mail that said he had an ‘unclaimed reward’ that was worth $100. The man called the number in the letter and was asked to confirm his identity. He was then asked for his credit card number to pay to have the reward shipped. Thankfully, the man didn’t fall for the scam, but it only takes a handful of people to fall for the scam before it becomes profitable for the scammer.


    The more people are aware of scams like these, the better prepared they are to prevent them. Please consider sharing this and any of our posts with your friends and family.

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