Boston condo buyers: Exercise extreme caution

Exercise extreme caution when dealing with wired funds in a Boston condo for sale transaction. Wire fraud is very much alive and well, and I’ve been hearing unfortunate stories from my colleagues recounting big money losses due to fraud activity.

When you’re buying or selling a Boston condo for sale, you’re dealing with a Boston condo broker or lawyer/ escrow company that holds transaction funds in a neutral account. Buyer and sellers make use of wired funds. Buyers wire deposits into an escrow account, as well as the balance of their down payment a couple days before the escrow closes. And sellers provide wiring instructions to the title company so the latter can wire the sale proceeds. Boston downtown condo prices being what they are, the sums of money are usually large.

Boston condo email scams

I’ve been hearing tales of Boston condo buyers receiving emails–allegedly from their escrow officers–instructing them to disregard previous wiring information and requesting that buyers instead wire funds to a new account. That’s a huge red flag, but you may not pick up on it if you’ve never been involved with a purchase.

And hackers are great at creating emails that look exactly like the messages a buyer has been receiving from an escrow company. Hackers can intercept email chains and your funds may ended up in a fraudulent account. That’s a lot of money to lose.

Here are basic tips for handling wired funds in a Boston condo for sale transaction:

– Get phone and account numbers directly from escrow officers,brokers or lawyers at the beginning of the transaction, preferably over the phone.
– Don’t wire money without calling the recipient team first, and use that phone number you got at the beginning of the sale, even if you receive an email that looks legit.
– Confirm the bank routing number, account numbers and other codes before transferring funds.
– Avoid emailing personal info like social security numbers

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MLS PIN data last updated at September 18, 2019 11:39 PM ET

Author Profile

John Ford
John Ford
EXPERIENCE

Over the course of 20 years in the Boston downtown real estate market, John represented and sold numerous, condominiums, investment and development properties in Greater Boston and in the surrounding suburbs



In addition to representing Boston condo buyers and sellers, John is currently one of the most recognized Boston condo blog writers regarding Boston condominiums and residential real estate markets. John's insights and observations about the Boston condo market have been seen in a wide variety of the most established local & national media outlets including; Banker and Tradesman, Boston Magazine The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald and NewsWeek and Fortune magazine, among others.



HISTORY

For over 24 years, John Ford, of Ford Realty Inc., has been actively involved in the real estate industry. He started his career in commercial real estate with a national firm Spaulding & Slye and quickly realized that he had a passion for residential properties. In 1999, John entered the residential real estate market, and in 2000 John Started his own firm Ford Realty Inc. As a broker, his clients have come to love his fun, vivacious, and friendly attitude. He prides himself on bringing honesty and integrity to the entire home buying and selling process. In addition to helping buyers and sellers, he also works with rental clients. Whether you’re looking to purchase a new Boston condo or rent an apartment, you’ll quickly learn why John has a 97% closing rate.

AREAS COVERED

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Contact
John Ford and his staff can be reached at 617-595-3712 or 617-720-5454. Please feel free to stop by John's Boston Beacon Hill office located at 137 Charles Street.




John Ford
Ford Realty Inc
137 Charles Street
Boston, Ma 02114

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