The threat of rental scams is a major source of worry for both the landlords and the tenants in the recent times. Scammers posing as landlords have become a very real challenge for renters looking for a home. When asked for personal or financial information, renters/tenants readily provide it to scammers without suspecting a thing. And today, where technology has eased up the process by taking it online, it’s very easy for intelligent fraudsters to fool unassuming tenants. To combat this problem, it is essential to recognize the indicators that lead to scams and take measures against them.
Rental Scam Red Flags:
• Offers of an impossible deal; a beautiful and expensive property at an unbelievable price, well below market standards.
• The landlord will ideally stay at his property during the course of an agreement, but if he is supposedly overseas, consider this as a warning.
• The scammers are after money. So, if you are asked for an upfront amount before even meeting the landlord at his property, it’s definitely a red flag.
• Scammers cannot meet potential tenants at the property as they do not own it. Naturally they will provide excuses as to why they can’t. This is a bad sign and must be treated with caution.
• Text within images in a rental listing is unnecessary and unprofessional. Naturally, treat any such listings with suspicion.
• The language used in the listing is an important criterion for determining the authenticity of the ad. If the language is grammatically incorrect and sounds inappropriate, it indicates a machine generated content. Steer clear of such content.
• Scour the internet for repetition of the listing content. Naturally, scammers have a lot of listings on their scanners and it’s highly probable that they duplicate their language in these. If you find duplicate content, move on to the next listing.
A property manager is a professional who can take care of all the formalities of a rental process and ensure smooth business transactions and processes between the landlord and the tenant. Hiring a reputed manager ensures that there is a minimum risk of scammers impersonating as landlords and robbing tenants. Although it is perfectly possible for a bad tenant to be kicked out of your property, it is always preferable not to have a bad tenant in the first place. Property managers ensure that there is a screening process in place to identify the good from the bad. The criteria for an ideal tenant are:
• Timely payment
• The intention of the tenants to rent the property for a long time
• The tenants should take good care of the premises and inflict minimum damage during their stay
• The tenants shouldn’t bring personal problems or otherwise to the landlord and his interests
A seasoned property manager will see hundreds of tenant applications and know exactly how to differentiate between genuine tenants and fraudsters. A property manager will not only protect landlords from scammers but also ensure a smooth transition process between landlords and tenants.
To conclude, no system is absolutely fool-proof. However, keeping a keen lookout and hiring a responsible property manager minimizes the chances of getting scammed. The indications mentioned here cover the situations where chances of a scam are maximum. So, it’s important to pay heed to these indications before taking a decision.
At Coda, we ensure the safety of the information of our clients. We employ the best measures and techniques to keep all the data safe and make sure that a seamless business agreement is formed between client and landlord, free from any scam.