If you’ve been driving around DC, especially the residential areas, chances are you’ve probably seen some yellow or white signs on the side of the road or on telephone poles saying “We Buy Houses in DC” or “ We Buy Houses Fast For Cash.” And you might be wondering to yourself….
Are These “We Buy Houses” Companies Really Credible?
Buying and selling houses is a valid and respectable profession that can help homeowners and their communities in many ways, and the majority of real estate investors in DC are honest folks who are looking to improve their neighborhoods one property at a time.
…but just like any other line of work, there are a few bad apples in the industry who make the rest of us look bad.
Unfortunately, there are some shady, dishonest investors who put money first. These are the types of people and who lie and mislead someone in order to turn a profit.
Yes, they’re out there.
And with there being so many DC house buyers, that often look alike at the start, it’s important that you find a credible and honest one to work with… But how do you know if these companies?
First, let’s cover exactly what the best house-flippers are doing.
What Respected DC Homebuyers Are Doing
- They’re helping people who need to sell their house and get cash quickly.
- We find that people often need to sell their house fast due to unforeseen circumstances. Maybe they need to relocate for a new job or to be closer to family. They might need to sell to cover unexpected medical bills. Whatever the reason, many real estate investors, including Consistent Homebuyers, can close on your house and put cash in your pocket in just a few days.
- They’re helping DC homeowners sell their property without the hassle of listing.
- Whether it’s the commissions and fees, the time it takes to list, or the cost it may take to repair the property…some people would prefer to avoid listing with a realtor altogether. Typically investors are buying directly from the homeowner meaning there aren’t any realtors involved.
- They’re creating local jobs.
- We hire plumbers, contractors, electricians, brokers, title reps, loan officers, administrators and many other folks along the way. The average real estate transaction involves 86 people from start to finish. Most investors help create real jobs for people around DC, Maryland, and Virginia.
- They’re buying US products.
- Many local investors, including us, spend tons of money on materials that are made right here in the USA – that creates jobs in our timber mills, factories, supply shops, distribution centers and more. The US economy depends on steady improvement, and that requires investment from folks like us.
- They’re increasing the value of DC neighborhoods.
- Investors typically look to repair abandoned and neglected houses, and turn them into beautiful homes for families. This actually strengthens DC’s overall economy by increasing the value of the neighborhoods and bringing in new residents.
- They’re increasing the tax base.
- This sounds bad, but when a new buyer takes over a renovated property, they’ll pay a higher tax rate based on the new and improved value. Those taxes go to pay for our schools, fire, police, libraries, streets and other valuable pieces of infrastructure. Again, improving DC’s overall economy.
Pretty cool stuff, right?
Lots of people think of house-flipping as a get-rich-quick scheme. That’s fueled by silly “reality” shows that amp up the drama because the reality of what we do on a daily basis is actually pretty boring.
Most of our work is coordinating with lots of people to make sure things are happening on time. We have to keep track of lots of moving parts.
So, let’s get back to how you can use this information to find out if someone is a credible investor, and not just pulling a DC house buyers scam.
How To Ensure You’re Working With A Reputable DC House Buyer
When you talk with a DC homebuyer to potentially buy your house… ask them some of the questions below to ensure they’re reputable, knowledgeable, and honest.
Ask open-ended questions like:
- How do you help your clients?
- What do you do for people?
- Can you tell me more about your services?
- What aspect of your business makes you the proudest?
- How would you describe your investment philosophy?
- How can I know that you’ll close on my house when you say you will?
Second, look for tell tale signs of tactics that those few shady operators tend to use.
- “Kitchen table closings”
- If a property buyer tries to get you to sign the deed (ownership) of your house over to them at your house, rather than a professional place like a closing attorney or title company… be leery. Most reputable DC house buyers will perform the actual closing of the sale at a neutral 3rd party place… like a title company. This ensures everything is done right and on the up and up.
- Pressuring you into a fast closing
- If a DC house buyer tries to pressure you into selling your house and says that you have to make the decision today, be leery. Ethical DC house buyers will make you and offer that will be on the table for at least 2-7 days (minimum) for you to make the right decision. The reason DC house buyers, like Consistent Homebuyers, place deadlines on our offers is because the market changes and values can change week to week depending on other sales in the area. Also… we buy multiple houses a month and when we make you an offer we’re assuring you that the cash to purchase your house is ready and reserved for several days so if you do want to sell your house, we can close on your schedule.
Most scammers are looking for a quick score, and not an in-depth interview.
Chances are good that they’ll find excuses to get off the phone and move on to someone who doesn’t ask too many questions.
True investors who run honest and ethical DC house buying services, however, are building long-term businesses based on relationships and community development.
So when you’re looking at one of the “we buy houses in DC companies“… never be afraid to ask questions!