Power of Attorney and rental property scam, my clients nearly got bit good!

Real Estate Agent with Champions Real Estate Services - Lynnwood, WA

The Leasing Scam

Just this week I was contacted by a renter who only after living at her new home for approximately 3 weeks came home to find a foreclosure notice on the door. Completely taken aback, she and her husband contacted the gentlemen (and I use that title loosely) whom they signed the lease with to find out what was going on. When he finally called them back, he simply said that he was aware this was happening, but not too worry......as the lender was just trying to scare them.

First of all, the man in question not only violated tenant law by not disclosing to the tenants that the property was in foreclosure, but we then came to find out that he isn't even the owner of the house. Apparently he has a Power of Attorney giving him the ability to sell or rent the property. The problem is that the POA is only valid as long as the property is “current”...meaning up to date in payments. The owner of the property has moved to Arizona and most likely signed over the abilities to this man under the impression that he would keep all in good standing.

We are now dealing with a property that hasn't made a payment in 10 months and is set to auction in September. To make it even more interesting, it looks as though this man had been squatting in the property since the actual owner moved out last year. My clients had to physically remove some of his property and clean up after him when they moved in. As an extra bit of icing, this man also claims he is a loan officer and is trying to get my client (the renter) to let him pre-qualify them for a mortgage so he can then negotiate with the lender and try to get them the house as a short sale. UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!

What scares me is that I am sure there are more unscrupulous jerks like this out there. Luckily my clients contacted me and I am going to be able to help them out of this situation. It just really chaps me that these people find is acceptable to damage others in this way. So heads up Renters!! Be sure the persons you are dealing with are either a legitimate leasing company or the owners themselves. This kind of fraud is starting to run rampant due to the type of market that we are in.

Jacquie Cliff - Real Estate Agent and Loan Officer
Accredited Buyers Representative and Residential Real Estate Specialist Serving:
Lynnwood, Bothell, Mill Creek, Seattle, Bellevue, Marysville, Mountlake Terrace, Edmonds, Everett, Snohomish, Kirkland and the surrounding areas!

Call me with any of your real estate questions at 425-773-3149 or email me at Jacquie@jacquiecliff.com anytime!

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Jacqueline Cliff - The Amazon Real Estate Broker


If you have questions about Real Estate, Home Loans or Real Estate Investing, I am the one to call!

Snohomish County Short Sale Real Estate Agent

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Aaron Barnes
Barnes Real Estate Brokerage - Destin, FL

well...  he must have a big set of @@

Jul 06, 2008 01:29 AM #1
Hope Goss
Ventura Property Shoppe - Ventura, CA
Ventura Real Estate

wow, thanks for the heads up on this scam.  It's terrible that there are so many jerks out there looking to take advantage of others.

Jul 06, 2008 02:09 AM #2
Pam Jank
Coldwell Banker Schneidmiller Realty - Coeur d'Alene, ID
Your Coeur d'Alene & North Idaho Real Estate Pro

Thanks for posting.  We have had similar situations here.  Someone gained access to a vacant listing (an open window).  He ran For Lease ad,  met them at the house, had a rental contract signed by the Tenants, collected 2-months rent, security, gave them a bogus key and then disappeared!  The poor unsuspecting tenant was out all those funds.

When renting or leasing a home... it is really important to verify the ownership and/or legitimacy of the rental/leasing company. 

Jul 07, 2008 07:17 AM #3
Respect Realty LLC
Respect Realty LLC - Milwaukie, OR
Brokers - Oregon / SW Washington Real Estate

I would report this guy to the state today! This person is more than likely going to keep your clients security deposit when they are forced out by the bank in September.

Todd Clark, Helping Families Home - www.IFoundYourNewHome.com

Jul 07, 2008 05:56 PM #4
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