Charlotte residents concerned over aggressive house-buying tactics

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - As Charlotte's housing market grows, so do the tactics for buying homes.

Michael Hopkins says he spends a lot of time removing "We Buy Houses for Cash" signs from his neighborhood, which is at times 20-30 per day.

"You can take 10 down and the next week there's 10 more," he says.

They are signs promising to buy a house for cash in Hopkin's hot real estate neighborhood, Biddleville, in West Charlotte, near Uptown.

"It sometimes gets really aggressive"

Hopkins says he was at one of his properties, removing the signs, when the man who placed them there, saw him. When the man got aggressive, Hopkins says he called 911.

"As soon as I put the 911 operator on speaker phone he kind of backed down, took off, but still yelling out of the window," he says.

Charlotte realtor Logan Abrams says this buying tactic is growing in popularity, as the local housing market does the same.

"They represent themselves to be a realtor when they're really not; they make the seller believe they can only sell their house cash to someone like this," Abrams says.

Abrams says many of the people who post the signs are not the actual buyers.

"They're flipping the contracts to other people, almost wholesaling the property," he says.

By doing this, they are creating their own inventory, he says, by constantly calling, knocking on doors and posting signs.

The number listed on a sign Hopkins has leads to an automated message.

"Hello," the message greets the caller. "Thanks for calling. We are your premiere house buyer based in Greenville, South Carolina - if you have a house you would like to sell, please leave a message."

"It's definitely aggravating and disturbing to us and the rest of the residents here," Hopkins says.

Abrams advises, the best way to make sure sellers get the most for their home is consulting either an attorney or a realtor when selling the house to one of these companies.

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