Homebuyers and novice investors are being blindsided by spruikers masquerading as qualified property investment professionals, with the financial consequences dire, according to two peak industry bodies.
The Property Investment Professionals of Australia (PIPA) and the Property Investors Council of Australia (PICA) have joined forces to warn consumers that unscrupulous operators could cost them their life savings.
PIPA chairman Peter Koulizos said with property markets rebounding, fly-by-night spruikers were once more coming out of the woodwork with the aim of snaring the unwary.
“PIPA has heard of buyers being offered ‘cash-back’ deals of tens of thousands of dollars to encourage them to buy inferior properties,” Mr Koulizos said.
“Of course, the ‘cash’ isn’t real because it’s built into the sales price so, in essence, buyers are paying for their own supposed windfalls.”
PICA chairman Ben Kingsley said property investment charlatans often made their money by accepting huge commissions to promote substandard property investment stock to investors.
“These fake advisers will also never disclose how they make their money if a consumer should ever ask, which should be a big red flag to anyone enticed by their slick marketing campaigns,” Mr Kingsley said.
Mr Kingsley said while commissions were a common part of the property investment sector, a qualified adviser would also undertake significant research before recommending a property to clients.
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