The Secretary of State’s office is warning investors so be wary of real estate scams. Spokesman Carrie Bebermeyer says residents have been reporting an increasing number of fraudulent or unregistered real estate investments. She says currently the securities division has 12 open investigations of real estate fraud and she she says the fraud is particularly concentrated in the Springfield-Branson area. Bebermeyer says in one case a Springfield couple sold a 50% ownership interest in the same property to six different investors. She adds that in another case an unregistered individual persuaded a resident to invest more than 250-thousand dollars in non-existent commercial real estate. Residents with questions or concerns can call the toll free investor hotline at 800-721-7996 or can visit the Secretary of State’s website at sos-dot-mo-dot-gov.