Beware of “We Buy Houses” Scams

February, 17, 2021

Recently, River Forest residents have notified the River Forest Police Department of a local scam after receiving text messages offering to purchase their home. Whether you see a “We Buy Houses” sign on the side of the road or receive an unsolicited text message, you should be wary of these types of scams. A reputable business will not solicit in this way. Do not reply and block the number.

In addition, here are some tips to consider when looking to sell your house:

  • Can you prove the investor’s company exists? Do some online research. Do they have a legitimate address with a brick-and-mortar office where you can schedule a meeting? Do they have a website? Are there online reviews about them? What you find, or what you do not find, will tell you a lot. When all else fails you can contact the Better Business Bureau.
  • Do they seem a little too eager to buy your house? If this is an investor, they should be gathering information and weighing the risk of their investment. Do they seem like they are trying to make a sound business decision? Are they rushing you? Are they trying to get you to sign documents with little or no notice?
  • Do you understand how the transaction works? Money in the transaction should always flow in the direction of you, the seller. If they ask you for money by way of a “processing fee” or “administration fee” that should be a huge red flag.

The River Forest Police Department will cover this scam and many others in a presentation this spring. Stay tuned to the Village website and Facebook page for updates. In the meantime, remember that scams seek to prey on your lack of knowledge or fear of inaction, in order to rush your decision makings and trick you out of your hard earned money. As always: Stop. Think. Research. Before you make any financial decisions. Please contact Ofc. Ben Ransom with questions at 708-714-3543 or email