Many people sell their homes each year. Most of these sellers make the choice to put their homes on the market. But others have no choice — selling is necessary, and they have to sell fast. Unfortunately, there are a number of companies ready to “help” them do just that.

We Buy Houses for Cash is a phrase you’ll find in many marketing signs and online advertisements for cash buyers. These companies pitch their services as a way to help people who need to sell their home in a hurry.

While they claim to offer quick sales, low or no fees, and no hassle, what you tend to get in return is a price for your home that falls well below fair market value.

Many people are attracted to the lure of selling their house fast for cash without having to list, show, or otherwise go through traditional means of selling. People who are recently divorced, have inherited property they don’t want, need to relocate for a new job, and are going through bankruptcy are all prime targets for these opportunistic cash buyers.

Regardless of what they promise, how much can you really trust these companies? How can you be sure you’re not getting scammed? And is there a better option?

Are Buffalo We Buy Houses for Cash Companies Legit?

While targeting vulnerable people in order to make out with a profit is ethically questionable, house flipping is completely legal. However, that hasn’t stopped scammers from creating their own version of We Buy Houses for Cash in Buffalo and other areas, as well.

In most cases, the chief difference between a legitimate house flipper and a real estate scammer is that the house flipper will take on your mortgage as well as your title. A scammer, on the other hand, will only take on the title.

Usually, the scammer will promise you that you can accept this cash offer and make mortgage payments to him or her. Not only are you saved the perceived inconvenience of working with a real estate agent, but now you don’t have to deal with the mortgage company, either.

What really happens in most cases is that the scammer will ask you to sign over the title. At that point, they’ll either rent out your home or have you pay mortgage payments to them (or both). In the meantime, they’ll use the equity in your home to obtain funding, such as a home equity line of credit.

After they’ve taken whatever they can from your equity (and from you), they’ll let your home go into foreclosure. They make off with the money while you’re left holding the overdue mortgage, foreclosure, and a newly destroyed credit rating.

Red Flags to Run From

If you’re dealing with a so-called investor or We Buy Houses for Cash company who asks you to sign off the title but never takes control of the mortgage, run away.

Any time someone offers to “handle” the mortgage, has you pay money to them instead of your mortgage company, or tries to rush you out of the home so they can rent it before the sale is done, they’re probably a scammer.

How Much Will a Cash Buyer Pay for Your Buffalo Home?

A typical cash buying company will pay, at most, 80% of the market value for your home. You might not think that’s a terrible rate, but it can end up costing you tens of thousands of dollars.

For example, take an average Buffalo home. The median value for a home in Buffalo is $226,300. A cash buyer paying 80% will offer about $181,040. That means you’ll lose around $45,260 off the fair market value. And that’s in a best-case scenario.

Many cash buyers offer as low as 50% of the fair market value, meaning on that same home you’d lose $113,150.

Unless you’re a fan of losing tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars for the sake of convenience, We Buy Houses for Cash isn’t the best option.

Buffalo iBuyer and Cash Buyer Reviews

Thereare a multitude of iBuyer and We Buy Houses for Cash companies in Buffalo. Here are a few of the ones you might be most likely to see ads for.

Highest Cash Offer lists the same three steps and the same benefits as almost every other We Buy Houses for Cash company in Buffalo. You get to sell, get paid, and move out on your terms.

Another common listing that shows up in Buffalo and many other locations is We Buy Ugly Houses. You’ll recognize this company by its animated cartoon caveman. The actual business name behind this brand is HomeVestors, but most frequently you’ll see ads for We Buy Ugly Houses instead. Their specialty is rundown and dilapidated homes and structures, hence the name, but they’ll buy just about anything they can flip for a profit.

Cash Home Buyers also operates in Buffalo. They follow the same process that almost every other cash buyer does. You fill out a form or otherwise contact them, you meet, they make you an offer, and you can accept or decline. If you accept, you get paid the full offer in cash on the day of closing.

It’s worth noting that all of these companies have almost identical processes, and that’s because at their core they are identical companies. They’re all composed of (or work with) investors looking to buy cheap and sell for a profit. That’s why so little attention is given to the details of your home or to obtaining accurate valuations.

Their business model is simply not about you, and that’s why working with these companies can be so harmful to sellers.

“Sell Your House for Cash” vs. a Full-Service, Local Real Estate Agent

If you need to sell your house fast, it might be tempting to sell your home, take the loss, and move on. But it’s almost never a good idea to work with these companies. Most who do make that choice because of misconceptions about working with real estate agents — misconceptions that We Buy Houses for Cash companies are all too happy to reinforce in their marketing.

For instance, working with a real estate agent doesn’t have to take a long time. Agents are well aware that some situations call for a fast sale, and they can help you get what you deserve out of your home. Even if you can’t get the full market value, you don’t have to put over $30,000 on the line just to get your home sold.

Another typical marketing ploy of cash buyers is to claim that you don’t have to deal with high commission rates. What they don’t tell you is that you’re paying astronomical commission rates — they’re just hidden in all those losses.

In reality, you can partner with a flat-fee real estate agent who can keep your commission costs low and your earnings high. Clever Partner Agents work on a flat fee basis of either $3,000 or 1%.

They can help you sell your home in Buffalo quickly and while earning what you deserve. They also understand the local market, so you can be sure they know exactly how to get you the best deal in the time frame you need to meet.

Before you consider cashing out and cutting your losses, contact a Clever Partner Agent and see how easy it can be.