My Column

Dont Fall Victim To Property Investment Scammers

  • Date: Monday 9th December 2019
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Working in entrepreneurial business, I come across many characters – some can be really motivational and inspiring while others unfortunately have the wrong mind-set entirely and people can get caught in the firing line.

Property ‘get rich quick’ schemes can be some of the worst offenders for misleading people and being downright dangerous at times. No one is immune to this – I even got approached recently, but I knew it was all a con. 

Looking back, this call had all the warnings of a scam right from the moment my phone started ringing.  I want to highlight some of the signs to you right now.

Companies will contact you out of the blue.  They might cold call, text, message on social media or email you, but if you engage with them, they then pressure you into making a rushed decision.  This could be with a limited time offer, bonus or discount if you sign up before a deadline, but once they have spoken to you, they’ll call or email you repeatedly. If you are on the phone to them, they will try to keep you on the line. This is to try to keep you engaged so they can put pressure on you.

Another sign is they will ask you to keep the investment quiet. The scammer might tell you the investment opportunity is just for you and ask you not to tell anyone. The reason for this is obvious; they don’t want a concerned family member or friend telling you not to touch it with a barge pole. Also, they won’t be registered on the FCA website.  In the UK, a firm must be authorised and regulated by the FCA to do most financial services activities.

These schemes are a regular occurrence at seemingly ‘educational’ property seminars, where unsuspecting investors advised on how to become a property millionaire in a short period of time using other people’s money. I’m sure a few people have perked up at the thought – but it’s not all it seems. 

It’s all smoke and mirrors to lure people in, selling them a dream where people see pound signs for little effort or sacrifice other than a small initial investment. Of course that ‘small’ investment doesn’t stay small for long and people are coxed into offloading more and more.

But it’s a gamble and a slippery slope where the risks get bigger and it all ends in disaster.

Property investment can be done successfully and it can prove lucrative but you need to be wary – carry out research, be financially aware and complete your due diligence.

The trouble with these con artists is that control is completely out of your hands when the ball starts rolling – so do your research and execute your right to say no.

I have been involved in business for a long time. I have done over £500m worth of property transactions, not as a broker or an agent but as a stakeholder, so I know what I’m talking about but I’m sorry to say there are a people out there who will take advantage of you using property.

I know all the potential scams, pitfalls and unscrupulous methods to get you to part with your hard-earned money and I intend to expose them all on my YouTube channel go and subscribe now. Its totally free and I will tell you what to watch out for, but in the meantime - If it sounds too good to be true then it probably is.

 

Related Content Video: Borrowing £250m is Easier Than Borrowing £20k

 

 

Side

No festive season is complete without the obligatory advent calendar, and it seems each year they seem to become larger and more elaborate.

The Christmas countdown gimmicks are now big business and over the past few years they have moved away from just being for children or those with a sweet tooth.

These days, you will be hard pressed to find one that only provides a small piece of chocolate each day through December, with retailers seeing an easy and cost-effective way to cash in on Christmas.

Debenhams alone offer a huge range of different styles across its Scottish stores and beyond. If you want 25 types of hot sauce, gins, make-up or cat treats – they will have you covered.

I’ve also noticed over the past few years that brands use their extravagant calendars to garner press attention. The more expensive or unique, the more column inches.

That blanket coverage kicks in earlier each year too, so I’ve no doubt we will see advent calendars launched in August before too long.

It’s not all “Bah Humbug” when it comes to myself and advent calendars, though. One I can really get behind this year is the living advent calendar at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh.

Every day of December, the charity will be revealing a new surprise to bring festive cheer to children, young people and their families visiting the hospital.

Launched by the Haddington Pipe Band on the first of December, the children have enjoyed visits from a magician and Capital Theatres who brought the magic of the pantomime along with them, to name but a few.

It’s a great concept that will bring a huge amount of joy to young people over the festive period and I raise a hot chocolate to those taking part.

 

Laugh

I’m constantly amazed at the humour shown by Scots on a daily basis. From our fantastic comedians who have hit the big time on TV, to the quick witted Twitter comics that spring up on social media constantly.

I really did laugh out loud last week then at one comic genius who noted the startling resemblance of a Ralph Lauren model showcasing an outfit for Cyber Monday Sales and Still Game’s skinflint Tam Mullen.

You wouldn’t associate the fictional Craiglang as the hottest catwalk outside of Paris, but it seems that our beloved comedy series has seriously raised the sartorial style stakes.

However, with the whole Ralph Lauren outfit costing £1,214, I’m not sure any pensioner, fictional or not, would purchase this particular ensemble. 

 

Cry

With the countdown to Christmas well and truly on, TV is awash with programs and adverts of extended families coming together to enjoy big festive dinners and open presents below the Christmas tree.

It was really sad to read then that a Scottish funeral directors has had to issue a public appeal for people to come in and collect over 150 sets of unclaimed ashes from its parlors across the country.

Fosters Family Funeral Directors hope that as the festive season is a time for family, thoughts may turn to those who are no longer with us and its appeal will help reunite families with the uncollected ashes of loved ones.  

With some sets of ashes dating back until 2005, I really do hope that people do come forward at this time.

 

 

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