Impersonating a REALTOR?
It’s true . . . There are unscrupulous folks out there who would impersonate a REALTOR without having a License.
Of course, that would be easy enough, right?
After all . . . When’s the last time a prospect or client asked to see your “Badge?”
Here in Tennessee, verifying the status (or existence) of a license is as easy as a few clicks on the Tennessee Real Estate Commission Website.
Perhaps this is a sign of the times, or maybe it’s been happening for years, but I’ve encountered more of these “Black Market Agents” this year than ever.
Some call themselves “Bird Dogs” . . . Tell them what you’re looking for, and they’ll go out there and find it and ask for a “finder’s fee” – Cash
Some are out there catching Buyer and Seller Prospects and offering them to local REALTORS and expecting referral fees in the form of – Cash
Some are preying on home-owners in areas in transition by offering “Top Dollar – CASH” for their houses hoping to get them to agree to below market pricing so they can flip it at market value to an end Buyer and walk away with profit without ever having any real skin in the game.
CASH is is an operative red flag. Before paying anyone anything relating to a real estate transaction, I require SSN/TIN and Proof of valid Real Estate License.
The problem with all of this is that in Tennessee (and I’m assuming most other states) it is ILLEGAL to practice Real Estate Sales without a license.
It is also illegal to pay Real Estate Commission (Referrals) to unlicensed people.
and it’s unlawful to enter into a contract with another person without having the ability to perform.
Just because it walks like a REALTOR and talks like a REALTOR and quacks like a REALTOR may not mean that it’s really a REALTOR.
. . . Might be a wolf in sheep’s clothing
Call me paranoid, but if I’m dealing with a REALTOR I don’t know, I ALWAYS verify their state license first . . . If I find them practicing without a license, I’ll let them know that what they’re doing is wrong and advise them to get themselves legal . . . The 2nd time, I report them to the commission.
I also advise the general public to do the same.
and I carry my “Wallet License” with me at all times.
Our profession is too vital for us to allow others to violate the trust we work so hard to gain.