Is this site really the answer to our crushing real estate worries?
June 27, 2006 5:37 AM   Subscribe

My wife and I bought a house shortly after we got married last year; due to various financial circumstance, we cannot afford the house, the homeowner's insurance or the property taxes this year-- heck we really can't afford to live there anymore, period. We're working with a realtor to try and sell our house, probably for even a short sale in hopes that we won't be foreclosed upon or declare bankruptcy. We just got an offer from a company that says they specialize in buying houses-- is this the answer to our prayers, or just another come-on?

The email is from offertobuyyourhouse@sellerform.com and is for the website ibuyhouses.com. My google-fu has failed to bring me any useful information. Everything I can find in google or dejanews are mostly advertisement and link directories to the site itself.

Here's the text of the email:
We are really interested in buying your house for ALL cash but you owe too much on it for us to do that.

BUT...we can still help! What we can do is help you find
an investor to step into your shoes and take over your
mortgage payments, along with the taxes, insurance, maintenance and all of the headaches involved in owning a house.

The investor will work on selling the house and getting the loan paid off while paying all the payments and expenses that would otherwise come out of YOUR pocket.

This will save you THOUSANDS of dollars in realtor commissions, fees, holding costs and headaches, and that's exactly what you want isn't it?

As of right now, you are showing your house month after month and paying all the mortgage payments, maintenance, utilities, taxes and insurance.

However, now an investor will take on all costs while selling the house.

Let us know if you're interested because we won't be able to do this for everyone that contacts us and it will be subject some inspections.

OR, if you really want to list it with a realtor who does a lot of volume, I can refer you to a couple of realtors that are really selling a lot of homes, and are very aggressive.

Which option do you like best?

Let us know so we can help right away, and so you don't waste too much time and even more money by sending the bank all those interest payments.

Thanks,
Devin
posted by ShawnStruck to Home & Garden (21 answers total)
 
I wouldn't touch a deal like this without running it by a lawyer first. There are a lot of home buying scams out there that take advantage of people in your exact situation. Google "equity theft" for some examples.
posted by gokart4xmas at 5:48 AM on June 27, 2006


That email just screams "scam" to me - the wording is so manipulative. Probably the only reason you're entertaining the idea of responding is that you just hope so much someone else is going to come along and solve all your problems, you're willing to grasp at straws.

I was in a similar situation to you several years ago. I made sure to keep in close touch with my mortgage holder and secondary loan holder and explained to them what was going on in a totally honest way. This bought me enough time to sell, and I also found a great real estate agent through word of mouth who took pity on me and helped me to sell quickly.
posted by hazyjane at 5:52 AM on June 27, 2006




This sounds incredibly scam-like to me. Are houses selling well in your area? Can you beg/borrow money to stay afloat until it sells? I think you'd be better off selling it through your realtor, even if you have to take a loss on it, than getting in bed with some scam business or having to file for bankruptcy.
posted by wheat at 5:55 AM on June 27, 2006


Run. Don't walk. Get as far away from this as possible. Besides most lenders will not let a 3rd party assume a mortgage. Work with your lender as mentioned above.
posted by Gungho at 6:27 AM on June 27, 2006


Foreclosure is expensive for the lender. If you are upfront with them they will work with you as best they can to give you some time to sell the house for a fair price. The quick and easy solution almost never is quick, or easy.
posted by COD at 6:33 AM on June 27, 2006


I wouldn't trust it for a second. Companies like that prey on people just like you who are having financial difficulties and want to get out of a house fast (you're not the only one; people get in over their heads more than you might think).

Ask yourself "how does this company make money?" Chances are the answer is "from you."

Just stick with your realtor for now.
posted by boomchicka at 6:37 AM on June 27, 2006


Can an admin please remove this guys phone number and email address from this posting so that he isn't suddenly getting all kinds of google hits when people search for this kind of thing?

especially remove his cell number and email address.
posted by crazyray at 7:15 AM on June 27, 2006


Where do you live and how much do you owe? Even if this isn't the solution, people may be able to suggest one with more information.
posted by electroboy at 7:26 AM on June 27, 2006


Seems like you are doing the right things already. An honest Realtor will be able to help you sell the home the quickest and for the most money.
These guys that buy houses aren't necessarily con-men they just specialize in finding people that are forced into a quick sale where they can take advantage of the situation.
posted by Wallzatcha at 7:40 AM on June 27, 2006


IAAL but I am not your lawyer. I have three cases right now, trying to recover homes/damages for people who had help finding "an investor to step into your shoes and take over your mortgage payments, along with the taxes, insurance, maintenance and all of the headaches involved in owning a house."

do not trust someone who will give you something for nothing and do not trust your home, credit rating, and financial future to this. get thee to a fair housing clinic in your area for legitimate resources for avoiding foreclosure. there are a number of safe, legitimate ways to avoid foreclosure, particularly if you accept that you have to sell the house and move on. call your local bar association, tell them you want to avoid foreclosure long enough to sell your house and is there a legal aid service that can help you.
posted by crush-onastick at 7:48 AM on June 27, 2006


Where do you live and how much do you owe? Even if this isn't the solution, people may be able to suggest one with more information.

Mansfield, TX.

We owe about 136,000 on the house. Not including property taxes and homeoners insurance.
posted by ShawnStruck at 8:24 AM on June 27, 2006


Like crush-onastick, IAALBNYL, and I recently managed to wrest a client's home out of the hands of one of these outfits. So to add to the pile-on: stay very, very far away from this offer.
posted by schoolgirl report at 8:29 AM on June 27, 2006


This sounds like a scam. Preying on people desperate to unload an expensive asset seems like a good way to make money.
posted by chunking express at 8:33 AM on June 27, 2006


They will pay as little for your house as they can. You will only save money when compared to the complete loss you will take on a foreclosure. However, this is a legitimate way to avoid foreclosure and as long as you go into it with your eyes open and understanding the process, it is better than a foreclosure most of the time.
posted by 517 at 8:52 AM on June 27, 2006


Don't do it.
posted by Ironmouth at 9:15 AM on June 27, 2006


I think ibuyhouses.com is one of Scott Wilkerson's companies. He's a rather infamous spammer. Don't do it.
posted by SpecialK at 9:39 AM on June 27, 2006


It seems like you're pretty serious about selling. BUT, have you considered getting a roommate, both of you working second jobs, etc to get the cash to pay for your expenses? I hope it works out for you.
posted by FergieBelle at 9:43 AM on June 27, 2006


Yea, this is not good. I don't know enough details to really help you (where, how much, etc.).

But I got into a pickle once and told all of my creditors that I was in the middle of a refi/2nd mortgage deal and they backed off long enough for me to pull it together.

Good luck with this.
posted by snsranch at 5:28 PM on June 27, 2006


snsrach:

Thanks for the well-wishes. As for where and how much, that's answered here.

FergieBelle:

Staying at the house isn't an option; we've already secured somewhere else to live and have moved most of everything out.
posted by ShawnStruck at 5:33 AM on June 28, 2006


Staying at the house isn't an option; we've already secured somewhere else to live and have moved most of everything out.

Well that rules out a refi. Sorry to state the obvious, but maybe you can reduce your price and break even, if you havn't already.
posted by snsranch at 5:24 PM on June 28, 2006


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