Property news: How to spot mortgage scams revealed by experts (Image: GETTY)
A property is one of the most important and expensive things a person will buy.
Each year hundreds of Britons are targeted by property scams and mortgage fraud, robbing them of their hard earned cash.
ABC Finance researched the spate of scams and found millions are lost each year due to property fraud.
Property fraud is on the rise, and UK Land Registry have received over twice as many fraud claims as they have prevented since 2009.
Property news: How to spot mortgage scams
In the last 14 years, 678 property fraud claims have been made – with the total pay-out amounting to £73.3 million.
This means that the average property scam pay-out stands at £107,669.
As a comparison, online scams – which receive a lot of press – set the average victim back £600.
Property fraud accounts for 71 per cent of fraud within UK local authorities. Comparatively, council tax has the second-highest rate of fraud but only accounts for 9 per cent.
It isn’t just homeowners that have to be aware of scammers – renting is also rife with potential for fraud. Between 2014-2018, victims of rent-related-fraud reported losses of £22.1m – with the scam costing the average renter £1,396.
Paula Higgins, founder and CEO, at HomeOwners Alliance said: “Unfortunately, the value of successful frauds of property sales have more than tripled from £7m in 2013 to £25m in 2017.
“Email and IT systems (especially those of conveyancers) are being attacked continuously. Scammers are becoming
more sophisticated - fake emails can now be very hard to spot, and people may find themselves caught out especially when under the stress of buying a home.”
Property news: Each year hundreds of Britons are targeted by property scams and mortgage fraud (Image: GETTY)
Property news: What types of properties are most at risk from fraud? (Image: ABC FINANCE LIMITED)