Dont Waste Your Money: Watch Out For These Scams

Dont Waste Your Money: Watch Out For These Scams
Frugal Living (

Now is a time of year when many scams surface to take advantage of deal seeking and vulnerable consumers.

The following highlights three of the most commonly used scams that consumers should be very wary of.

1. IRS Phone Scam

Scammers know most citizens can be nervous when they hear from the IRS. This scam is a commonly used one, in which scammers call unsuspecting citizens claiming to be from the IRS and state that they owe the IRS money and fraudulently demand payment.

It is very important to remember that 1) the IRS never asks for any personal payment method information over the phone; 2) never demands that a taxpayer used a specific payment method over the phone; or 3) never takes immediate action upon ending a phone conversation since taxpayers must be notified of any impending collection action by the IRS.

The IRS website has a great information page where taxpayers can find out about the phone scams being used by unscrupulous people to steal money from citizens.

For more information on what to be on guard for or to report a scam, go to and type “scam” in the search box.

2. Panhandlers That Pretend to be Disabled

Another commonly used scam is when people pretend that they are mentally or physically handicapped and beg for money. There are many that can mimic the disabled quite well and people can’t really tell they are being scammed by someone who in all likelihood is making a significant amount of money each year panhandling. The US Department of Justice issues periodic reminders about this scam.

Most panhandlers have places to live, and most homeless people do not panhandle. You can protect yourself from this scam by not giving to panhandlers and instead start giving your hard earned money to a trusted charity. A website called has a list of reputable charities that can be used to help those in need.

3. Foreclosure Scam: Renting Foreclosed Homes

With the current booming rental market, many would be renters are being victimized by scammers who claim they rent foreclosed properties. Scammers will place “for rent” signs on the properties of foreclosed homes and place ads in local newspapers stating these properties are for rent. Unsuspecting renters then give the scammer deposits and first month’s rent before they realize they cannot live in the property.

If you are a renter there are certain things to be aware of in order to protect yourself against this type of scam. There are certain red flags that may signify a scam. Some of these red flags include proprietors not wanting to have a rental contract, only accepting cash for a deposit and first month’s rent and asking for deposits that are abnormally small. Also, if you think you may have come across a scam, it’s important to notify the local police department in your area.

To conclude, throughout the year, you need to be wary of scammers preying on you. They can do immeasurable financial harm before you know you have been the victim of their enterprise. Be aware and educate yourself on the types of scams out there and how to identify them. If you do end up becoming a victim of fraud, file a complaint with the FTC, FDA or State Attorney General’s Office.

For more money saving tips, check out “Extreme Savings” available on Amazon and wherever books are sold.

January 6, 2015


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