With every passing year, it’s important to take stock of what you’ve learned in the past 365 days. We learned a lot in 2017.
Wire fraud was a bigger threat to buyers than anyone expected
Wire fraud is on the rise. We’ve been saying this for years, and it remains true. It’s a little like bitcoin in 2017. It just keeps going up, and up, and up. According to an FBI report earlier this year, incidents of wire fraud have risen 480 percent. To put that in perspective, cyber criminals stole or attempted to steal nearly $1 billion from real estate purchase transactions in 2017. In 2016 that number was just $19 million. To learn more about wire fraud and how to protect yourself from wire fraud, check out our blog: How to protect yourself from wire fraud.
Consumer education is the key to stopping wire fraud
Only you, the consumer, can prevent wire fraud. If you follow the instructions of a fraudster, your money is gone. That’s why we take consumer education seriously. We give buyers detailed instructions to help them combat the efforts of fraudsters. In our playful blog post below, we use memorable clichés like, “It’s 3 a.m. Do you know where your children are” and “Only you can prevent forest fires,” to emphasize consumer’s personal responsibility in preventing wire fraud. Check it out here: 3 clichés to prevent wire fraud in real estate
Our Philly office isn’t playing around
In 2017, we learned that our Philly office, now winners of four straight WWLT Halloween Costume Competitions, isn’t playing around. They take their ridiculous costumes quite seriously! Over 700 people voted and New York fell short by only 22 votes! Unfortunately for the New York, their 80’s wigs just weren’t enough to tip the scales. Check out the costumes here!
– Philly WWLT Circus Phreak Show – 51.54% – ( 367 votes )
– New York 80’s Bands – 48.46% – ( 345 votes )
New reporting requirements for certain wire purchases
In their ongoing effort to weed out and prevent money laundering in luxury residential real estate purchases, FINCEN expanded their Geographic Targeting Order (GTO) to include wire purchases in NY and elsewhere. The GTO is effective September 22nd, 2017 through March 20th, 2018. To learn what transactions title insurers and their subsidiaries must report, check out our blog: FinCEN: Additional Reporting Requirements for Wire Purchases in NY, Elsewhere
About World Wide Land Transfer
World Wide Land Transfer is a service-oriented title company with offices New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. We work with consumers, attorneys, law firms, investors, lenders, and REO providers. We have extensive experience closing everything from multi-million dollar commercial transactions to complex reverse mortgage transactions. To get in contact with WWLT or to learn more about our services, please visit our homepage today!