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EDITORIAL: Illegal Signs Proliferate on Groton Streets

Illegal Real Estate Sign bolted onto light pole at corner of Broadmeadow and Main St.


Like cockroaches in the city, illegal signs advertising quick house sales such as “We Buy Houses For Cash” are proliferating on the light poles and sign structures of Groton. As fast as they are taken down, other ones take their place. These signs are illegal according to Groton town bylaws and the miscreants posting these signs in the dark of night know it and do not care. Not only are such guerrilla marketing signs illegal in Groton, some may subject people in financial distress, and especially seniors, to real financial scams.
     You’ve seen the signs nailed to Groton’s utility poles and even on street sign structures. They come with a variety of messages, similar to: “We Buy Houses for CASH!”, etc. They hype quick closes and easy solutions that anyone with a looming home sale or in a desperate financial situation may find intriguing, but any person of sound mind should wonder why a legit service for a major investment would be advertising by roadside signage. Is
this low-key guerrilla marketing or are these “We Buy Houses” signs advertising scams?
     Most [but not all] “We Buy Houses” signs are backed by legitimate companies. They may be house flippers or investors who want to buy houses cheap and make money off fixing them up or holding onto them. Such companies are not trying to swindle homeowners out of money or perform real estate fraud but want to buy houses that are usually 50% to 80% of market value. If they can’t purchase the home at a price well below market, they can’t make the money they need. Sometimes their offer price isn’t high enough to cover a seller’s financial obligations, so the transaction doesn’t occur. 
     Despite the sign’s strong message, calling the phone number does not guarantee a sale. Sellers will make more money and be treated fairly and honestly by a local real estate professional. 
     Beware those who deface our neighborhood by posting these illegal and provocative signs.
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