Throughout the current market, property frauds and real estate scams are gaining ground at all levels. As a result, it is getting more and more difficult to tell which ones are true and which ones are not. It is very important to choose the right property and the individual from whom you are purchasing.

A couple has been arrested by Kurar police in Mumbai for allegedly defrauding a resident of Malad East of Rs. 1.39 crore while pretending to sell his family two apartments in an opulent Malad high-rise.

The 57-year-old complainant was the chief financial officer of an advertising company before he resigned, according to the police. He resides in a residential tower in Malad East with his wife and son.

During a carrom tournament in the community in January 2022, the complainant encountered the accused Sanjay Chindarkar, who resides in the same building. They afterward grew close. After two months, Chindarkar inquired as to the complainant's housing needs and informed him that he was prepared to sell two of his apartments on the 39th floor of the structure.

According to the police, the complainant saw Chindarkar's apartments and made the decision to purchase them for Rs 4.25 crore.

"The accused person prepared sale deeds for the two apartments, had them registered and allegedly took Rs. 1.39 crore from the complainant between April and November 2022. A letter of authorization that the accused individual reportedly handed to the complainant was later revoked with the purpose to defraud, according to the FIR.

He demanded that his money be refunded but was unsuccessful because he realized that the accused had no intention of selling the units to him. Later, he went up to the officers.

The Indian Penal Code's sections 406 (criminal breach of trust), 420 (cheating), 467 (forgery of valuable security), and 34 (common intention) were cited by the Kurar police on Saturday in connection with the filing of a case against Chindarkar and his wife.

How to stay safe from fake sellers - 

1. In some cases, criminals try to sell properties by impersonating the owner using a stolen or fake ID. You should always verify the validity of the seller before making any big purchase.

2. Scammers are likely to lack patience or to show a sense of urgency. In the case of unknown people, paying them in advance is not a good idea.

3. You need to study the title documents carefully to make sure the owner is the rightful owner of the property. If any shortfall is found in the document of title, the whole document may turn out flawed.

4. It is recommended that digital escrow platforms be used for payment. When making an online payment with Escrow, you do not share your financial information with anyone. There is a platform for Digital escrow named Vouch.

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Do I need an escrow for investments? ​

How does digital escrow work?

In digital escrow, a third-party account holds the money deposited by the buyer until the seller fulfills the terms of the contract. The escrow company supervises the transacting parties.

What is the role of Digital Escrow in preventing online fraud in India? 

Digital escrow services are offered by many companies in India. Among the most trusted is Vouch.

Vouch’s Digital Escrow service is a transparent way for buyers and sellers to build trust and secure a clean transfer of product and payment. Sellers can feel assured that they will be fairly compensated promptly, and buyers will feel confident that their order will be delivered as expected and on schedule. Vouch Digital Escrow keeps you updated and informed at every step of the transaction process till the end. Vouch’s professionals are always available to assist you with all queries that you may have during the entire transaction process. 

There is no scope for deceit or fraud since the payments, shipping, delivery, and execution are carried out under the honest and watchful eyes of the Vouch’s professionals. With Vouch, any business transaction becomes transparent, uncomplicated, and hassle-free. If you ever come across a fraudster asking for OTP, asking you to scan a QR code, or asking you to click on phishing links, you can simply refuse and ask him/her to proceed with the transaction through Vouch.

Safety is not just about protecting your credit, debit card number, and UPI accounts. It's about having control of your money till you've received the product or service you bought online!

Note: This is a good-faith initiative to educate the world about avoiding frauds like these and how to act when you're becoming a victim of such a situation. 

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