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AARP Virginia Fraud Alert for May 15: Fighting Against Real Estate Scams

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From coast-to-coast AARP is working to spread information and knowledge about dangerous scams but sometimes education alone isn’t enough. That’s why we are working in dozens of states to improve fraud protections to help people hang onto their money and increase penalties on the criminals. One issue that AARP is taking on in several state legislatures is residential real estate listing scams.

Last year we learned that a Florida-based real estate firm was offering small cash payments to homeowners to serve as their exclusive real estate agent. What they didn’t disclose is that unlike most real estate contracts that last months at most, these agreements lasted for 40 years. Worse yet these companies were targeting underprivileged neighborhoods with illegal robocalls and offering hundreds of dollars for a contract that would eventually pay them thousands.

Thankfully, Attorneys General in Massachusetts, North Carolina, Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania have sued the company alleged to be behind this activity, MV Realty, and seven state legislatures have passed legislation based on a model bill AARP developed along with other national stakeholders prohibiting these types of predatory contracts. Several other state legislatures are considering passing legislation based on AARP’s model bill.

In the meantime, be wary of unsolicited phone calls, especially those that offer a financial incentive to sign a contract. Be a fraud fighter!  If you can spot a scam, you can stop a scam. 

Visit the AARP Fraud Watch Network at  or call the AARP Fraud Watch Helpline at 1-877-908-3360.

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