According to Chron, “the Better Business Bureau of Greater Houston and South Texas is seeing an uptick in reports of rental scams. Finding a new place to live is stressful, and scammers know that people in the midst of moving don’t always have time to do the necessary research. Don’t be one of them.”
“Rental scams often follow a similar pattern. You respond to an online rental listing that touts a beautiful home, low rent, and great amenities.”
“It looks legitimate; con artists often use real photos and descriptions stolen from other websites. The “landlord” replies to your message claiming to be out of town and unable to show the property.”
“One common scenario is that the scammer pretends to have been transferred suddenly for work.”
“The scammer will then create a false sense of urgency, telling you that others are interested so you must act immediately. They will ask for a security deposit and/or first month’s rent to reserve the property.”
Apartment List, a website dedicated to matching renters with the right property, estimates that 5.2 million U.S. renters have lost money due to rental scams.
The company ran a national survey of 1,000 renters to take a look at the impact of rental scams. Apartment List found that just a tick over 43 percent of those renters encountered a fraudulent listing, with over 6 percent of them losing money.
The survey also found that across the board young renters, those between the ages of 19 to 29, were most likely to have encountered a suspicious listing, contact a fraudulent listing, lose money from scam and sign a bogus lease.
According to Apartment List, some of the most common rental scams are:
Since our inception, we have been helping homeowners, along with improving communities in every city in which we work.
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