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Real estate fraud in Maine rising as scammers take advantage of tight housing market, desperate buyers

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A view April 24 of the neighborhoods around Lake Street, right, and Orchard Street, middle, in Auburn. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

LEWISTON — Today’s housing market is, by many measures, the tightest it’s ever been in Maine and across the country. There are simply more potential buyers than inventory – an imbalance that is not likely to even out for months, or years to come.

Despite fears over inflation and rising mortgage rates, the insatiable demand for new and used homes continues. 

Home sales of existing, single-family homes in Maine declined 21.48% in March 2022 compared to March 2021, due to recent lack of inventory, coupled with pent-up buyer demand, according to the latest figures released by the Maine Association of Realtors. But the price of homes continues to skyrocket, with the median sales price up 21.4% to an average price of $325,000 compared to March 2021, which showed the median sales prices at $268,500. 

Androscoggin…

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