By: Matt Timmermans
Bali is a hotspot for those looking to invest in real estate. As property demand rises, so does the amount of property scams. Foreigners can find several types of property for sale in Bali, but it’s essential to be aware of the risks and dangers of the Balinese property market. You can take several steps to avoid real estate scams and ensure a safe and secure experience when buying property in Bali.
Identifying commons real estate scams in Bali
When looking for property for sale in Bali, it’s crucial to be aware of the common scams. One famous scam is the ‘double sale’ scam, where a property is sold to multiple buyers. This often happens with properties that have unclear ownership status.
Another common scam involves fake property agents or agencies. These scammers create convincing fake websites and listings to lure buyers into paying deposits or fees for properties they don’t own or that don’t exist.
A third scam to be wary of when buying property in Bali is the overpriced property scam. Here, agents inflate property prices, especially targeting foreigners who may not be familiar with the local market rates. There are also cases of forged documents, where scammers use fake or altered legal documents to sell properties they don’t own.
Many foreigners have also been victims of time-sharing scams in Bali. This type of scam involves salespeople offering free or discounted holidays to lure potential buyers into high-pressure sales presentations. These presentations can mislead buyers about the nature of the time-sharing agreement, including the costs, the property’s condition, and the ease of exchanging time slots. Buyers might find themselves locked into long-term contracts with high maintenance fees, stringent terms, and difficulty rescheduling or exchanging time slots.
How to avoid being scammed
You can take several steps to avoid being scammed when buying property in Bali. Real estate due diligence is critical. Always verify the legal status of the property and ensure that all documents are authentic and up to date. This includes checking the property’s land certificate, building permit, and tax payment proofs.
It’s essential to seek professional advice when buying property in Bali. Work with a reputable real estate agent that understands Indonesian property law. They can help verify documents and provide legal guidance throughout the buying process.
One step most property buyers forget to take, but which is very important, is conducting a thorough background check on the property agent, agency, or seller. Ensure the property agency is licensed and has a good track record. Be wary of agents who pressure you into making quick decisions or paying large deposits upfront.
Here are the most important tips to avoid being scammed in Bali:
- Understand the property market: Before buying a villa, extensively research the property market in Bali. Understand the local property values and trends, and familiarize yourself with the property ownership laws in Indonesia, as there are specific regulations for foreign buyers.
- Verify legal documents: Always check and verify the authenticity of all legal documents related to the property. This includes land certificates, building permits, and tax documents.
- Use a reliable agent: Work with a reputable and licensed real estate agent. A trustworthy agent can provide valuable guidance and insight into the local market.
- Beware of too-good-to-be-true offers: Be cautious of offers that seem too good to be true, such as significantly undervalued properties or high-pressure sales tactics.
- Avoid paying large deposits upfront: Be cautious of requests for large upfront payments or deposits before completing all legal procedures.
- Inspect the property personally: If possible, visit and inspect it to ensure it matches the descriptions and exists.
- Use Trusted Platforms: Consider using trusted property platforms like Own Property Abroad, which vet their listings and collaborate with credible agents.
The role of a reliable buying platform and trustworthy agent
Using a trusted buying platform, like Own Property Abroad’s property marketplace, can significantly reduce the risk of scams. These platforms often have vetted listings and work with reliable agents, providing additional security for those interested in property for sale in Bali.
The importance of working with a real estate agency cannot be emphasized enough. A good agent will have in-depth knowledge of the local property market and can guide you through the complexities of the buying process. They can help you identify legitimate properties, negotiate fair prices, and meet all legal requirements.