How to avoid becoming a victim of apartment scams

05.11.2010 19:55
As far as providing security deals with housing system of state registration, and what you can do yourself, says Deputy Director of the Office Rosreestra Moscow Inna Demidova

Every year in Moscow, according to the Metropolitan police department, recorded from 200 to 250 crimes related to confiscation of apartments have their legitimate owners. PR specialists argue that the police statistics include not all such cases - to prove fraudulent intent is often not so simple. For example, when an unsuspecting buyer vparivaetsya housing with not very clear in legal terms, history, and after some time the transaction is completely legal way, through a court, shall be terminated. And the buyer is and without an apartment, and without much of value for money.

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Moreover, experts note, there are good and bad side of things. The good is that just too brutal residential crimes of murder, now is not so much as a "daring 90. Bad - to full flower bloom scam in one way or another connected with forged documents. Sometimes, people do not suspect that his apartment ... sold. On one such case, "KP" wrote recently - "Dagestanis Illegal survived a Moscow apartment with his pregnant wife of an officer."

Can you protect yourself from these bases, we decided to find an organization that is directly responsible for the registration of ownership of the Moscow housing - in the Office of the Federal Service for State Registration, Cadastre, and Cartography (Rosreestr) in Moscow.

- All sales of housing in the compulsory register. This ensures protection against fraud?

- State registration includes conducting legal review of documents. What does this mean? First of all establish whether the contradictions between its stated earlier registered rights. That is really the man who, say, selling an apartment or on whose behalf it is sold under power of attorney, is the owner of the apartment and its ownership is registered in the State Register.

Registrants also must verify the legal effect of those documents that are filed with the state registration: do they correspond to each other in content, if not inconsistent with applicable law, etc.

Unfortunately, the registration service is not legislatively charged with the conduct of examination of the authenticity of documents. Unfortunately, because the majority of fraud comes from the fact that such examination is not conducted institutions. It is very complex, laborious and expensive procedure. Therefore, it is assumed that, if suddenly you have registered with any doubts, if not fake in front of him, he may request additional documents.

Such doubt is really there. For example, if the registrar of the practice is well-known signature of a particular signature of a notary or an official. And he sees that the signature on those documents that lay before him, clearly not the original. In such clear cases the registrar, of course, prompts the information provided, and if the information is not confirmed, the registration of the transaction is refused.

However, if used, shall we say, qualities of forged documents, the registrar to the eye can not detect a genuine document or a fraudulent copy.

To improve the situation we addressed in the Chamber of Notaries of Moscow to conclude an agreement on exchange of information. Most of the scammers operate by proxy. Therefore, the registration service is extremely important to receive confirmation, if the original power of attorney presented to us.

- Who is most often the victims of apartment scam? And the "risk" in a position to help the state?

- The risk especially single elderly people and people who abuse alcohol. If you have any other relatives and you are worried about their fate, we come to the reception Rosreestra and leave there a statement about what you are afraid of possible action by the scam and asked not to perform the registration steps on such an address, without notice.

Similarly, we can do if you, say, a lost passport or if it is stolen. Or do you have any other reason to believe that your right to home ownership in jeopardy.

Such statements in the management receives a lot, they are entered into the database, which runs the registrar during the legal review.

- Typically, to avoid problems when buying and selling of housing recommended to inspect the apartment clean. Realtors on this well earned ... Can the man himself to get help in Rosreestra if he wants to make sure that the same housing, which he buys, no other problems?

- Any Russian citizen has the right to provide passports to obtain reliable information about the owner of the premises, the presence or absence of restrictions or encumbrances on the premises in the form of arrests, bans and so on. Often this information is enough to avoid being sucked into some scam.

Welcome, all receiving Office Rosreestra in Moscow from September 27 to extract from the Unified State Registry at the date of treatment shall be issued the same day. Today, you asked - this very day to you within 5 - 10 minutes, this information will be provided in the form of an extract on hand. This service costs $ 100, the information can be found at any apartment.

An important point: in addition to information about a property owner, will be reflected in the statement and whether there are restrictions and encumbrances on the subject. That is to say, if you're interested in right to property by someone challenged in court, you'll learn about it immediately.


If you have somehow been lost documents, which somehow can use apartment scams, for your own peace of mind should report this to any receiving Office Rosreestra (what to do, see text).

These documents primarily include:

- Passport

- Certificate of registration of title to the apartment, as well as documents confirming the right (witness the privatization of inheritance, the contract of sale, etc.).

Similarly, should do, if you withdraw previously issued authorization for certain actions on his apartment.

The most popular trick scam

Machinations of attorney. It may turn out to be false, and overdue, and null and void - even written out on behalf of the already dead. Alas, all these methods of cheating are not complicated in execution.

Shopping Tips: If you sell an apartment by proxy, the main safety measure - seek a personal meeting with the homeowners. If he's sick or because of their age are unable to leave home, you may well arrange a meeting at home. If it turns out that it does not, it is better to abandon the deal.

Council sellers: do not sign any powers of attorney for that whatsoever, if you do not fully understand to what, in fact, these actions you his "representative" authorize.

Forgery: how to title (ownership certificate), and confirming that the housing "will be no problems" - excerpt from the goblin books, reference BTI, etc. At best, this way you sell an apartment with surprises "- for example, in the form prescribed there tenants who submitted papers to you, however, does not mean. At worst - all run out "bought" property, as to declare it the legitimate owners and to challenge the deal.

Tip: it would be desirable to save money, it is better to do than by checking the "purity" apartments professionals.

Scam with the advances. Popular option - when using forged documents, the same flat "sold" several times. With all the buyers are going to advance - and then "sellers" disappear.

Another possible kind - trying to persuade the buyer to pay a large portion of the amount before the state registration of the transaction, even signed by a notary public (often dummy) a contract of sale. Having received after this money, "seller" again evaporates.

Tip: Before you give an advance, it is useful to examine the documents the seller and collate them with the data in the extract from the state register, you can take yourself (see main text). Also, negotiating the transfer of money, remember that without state registration of the transaction is invalid.
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