Rental Red Flags That Your Landlord Is Scamming You
How do you know when your landlord is scamming you? According to Apartment List, 9.1% of younger renters and 6.4% of all renters have lost money from a rental scam. Keep an eye out for these rental red flags to avoid falling prey to a landlord scam.
How to Know that Your Landlord Is Scamming You
One of the most common rental red flags is rental prices that seem too good to be true. In this case, chances are something is wrong. If there is a rental that is severely below the average cost of a similar amenity, then there is a chance that it may be a scam and you could be putting yourself at risk to lose money. Another cause for concern would be if the landlord keeps making excuses to not show you the property. Even if they say they will lower the price for the inconvenience of not being able to view the place, they are just trying to make the scam sound more enticing. A major red flag is that the landlord asks you to send money through an unsecured system, such as a wire transfer.
The most important thing is to do your research on your landlord. Ask around to see if anyone you know has experience with this landlord. Look online for reviews or for any signs for concern.
Importance of Reading the Lease
The best way to detect a rental scam would be to read the lease in full. The lease outlines the duties and responsibilities of both the landlord and the tenant. It also details what each party can get out of the agreement. Reading the lease ensures that you are aware of anything that the landlord has included for their own benefit. They may have included these with the hopes that you wouldn’t notice. Terms in the lease that you did not agree to or that seem confusing may indicate a scam. Work out all the details with the landlord.
Knowing What’s Normal When Renting
If you are a new buyer or if you would like more information, it is important to research market trends to discover prices and other aspects of renting that are considered normal. This way you will be able to compare the property that you are looking at to others that are similar to evaluate the risk. One thing that should always be clear when renting is the amount of money that will need to be paid for rent. Failure to include a set payment is a red flag for rental fraud.
Any restrictions that the landlord wants to impose should also be clearly outlined in the lease. Any deposits or fees should also be specified. This ensures that you are not running into unwanted costs that you were unaware of. Finally, you will definitely want to have an understanding of the landlord’s right to entry. They may have it outlined so they are allowed to enter at any time. If this is a problem for you, then it is certainly worth finding another place.
Overall, you want to do specific research on the place you are trying to rent and the landlord that you are working with to make sure that you are not going to become a victim of rental fraud. Also, make sure to carefully go over all of the documents that are involved in the rental to make sure that everything is as you expected.
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