People tend to think they’re pretty savvy when it comes to scams, but the truth is that email cons cost Americans $800 million per year.  When you’re closing on a home, you tend to be vulnerable. You’re processing a lot of financial information and paperwork, and you may get overwhelmed. It can be hard to tell whether your recent email is from an Orlando title insurance company or a scammer.

Here are three ways to improve your con-detection skills and avoid scams during home closing.

Do Not Trust “Last Minute” Wiring Changes

You may receive an email saying that it’s from the title company you’re working with. They will provide you with a “last minute change” and updated instructions to wire money prior to closing. Don’t do it.

Unfortunately, hackers are getting into the private files of real estate agents to discover closing dates and financial totals. With that information, the scammers email you from a fake email address designed to look real.

If you don’t confirm the change and instructions with your real estate agent, you can easily be fooled. Your money will go to someone else’s account and quickly be removed by scammers.

Make a Phone Call to Confirm Email Instructions

Email scammers are becoming more sophisticated. It’s harder and harder for an average American to know if the email is legitimate simply by looking it over. To avoid a heartbreaking loss of money, call the sender of the email to confirm any instructions you receive.

If anyone requests documentation, information, or signatures over email, call them before you reply. Be sure that they sent the email, and it’s not a “spoof” designed to look like it came from someone you know. Scammers can spoof email address that are in your address book, so it pays to be careful.

Don’t call a number provided in an email, because that could be fake too. Instead, look up the number yourself or use a number you already know and trust.

Report Fraud Immediately

As soon as you suspect you may have been scammed, report the issue to your bank and the police. The FBI has an internet crime complaint center as well and needs to know about any incidents that occur.
Buying a home should be a dream come true. To avoid getting into a nightmare, choose a reputable Orlando title insurance company and practice the safety tips above. You’ll be glad you did!