How to avoid rental scams

 

People who are looking for a new apartment will find many different ways to make the process easier. But sometimes an easier process does not mean that it is more reliable. If you are out there trying to rent a new apartment, you need to learn how to avoid the rental scams that could cause you years of expensive problems.

Never Deal In Cash Only

A landlord who wants to deal in cash only is someone who is trying to prevent a paper trail from being established. Whenever you do a transaction with someone like a landlord, you want the paper trail to be as detailed as possible to protect yourself. Be wary of landlords who only want to deal in cash and landlords who insist on not using a lease.

Never Do Business Online Only

The Internet has helped to make transactions between landlords and tenants easier, but it has also opened the door for fraud. If you are trying to rent an apartment from a landlord who only deals with people through the Internet, then walk away. There is a chance that you will send your deposit and first month’s rent through the Internet and never hear from that landlord again.

Always Do A Walk-Through Before Renting

Landlords that prefer to work online only will create elaborate videos and picture slideshows for their properties to get you to rent. You should never rent an apartment that you cannot see in person first. For one thing, seeing the apartment in person gives you a chance to get a feel for the neighborhood and the whole property instead of just what you see online.

Do A Quick Check On The Property Owner

If there is anything noteworthy about the property owner, then that information will usually pop up during a standard Internet search. Do not forget to check out the owner of the property before signing any kind of lease. The worst time to find out that your landlord was committed of fraud is after you have signed a legal agreement with them.

Read The Lease Before Signing

Little elements of a lease, such as making sure the owner you have been talking to is the owner identified in the lease, are important when looking for an apartment. Before you sign your lease, you should take the time to read it and do not be afraid to ask any questions about suspicious items.

Don’t Do Business Through A Middleman

One popular scam for apartment hunters is talking to someone who claims to work for a landlord only to find out that the middleman was a scam artist who took all of the potential tenant’s money. Insist on only dealing with a landlord, and insist on valid identification to prove the landlord’s identity.

Renting an apartment can be a stressful time, but that stress can get magnified when the apartment hunter gets mixed up with a scam artist. As an apartment hunter, you should always do your homework and insist that all of the right forms are used to prevent any kind of rental scam.