Watch Out: How to Look for a Rental Property without Getting Scammed

Owning your home and renting your home both have their advantages and drawbacks. But when you’re looking for somewhere to rent you need to be especially careful. The sums of money involved aren’t as large as if you’re buying a property. But the risk of someone scamming you, losing money or just finding out you’ve rented a dump isn’t insignificant. If you aren’t careful when you’re looking for a new home to rent, you could find that you’re stuck with a useless landlord or an apartment or house that’s falling apart. To make sure you get a good deal on your rental property, there are precautions you can take. Learn how to detect a scam, how much you should be paying and what to look for in a property, and you can find a home you love.

Watch Out for Scams

The first thing you should be aware of is rental scams. You will find these most often on websites like Craigslist, where anyone can post a listing. There are a few things to be aware of when you’re trying to detect a scam. One of them is the adage that if it looks too good to be true, it probably is. If the photos or description of the property don’t appear to match up with the price when compared with other properties in the area, it’s likely to be a scam. A good tip is to search for images on Google, by right-clicking on a PC and selecting “Search Google for this image”. Google will then tell you if the image is elsewhere online; many images used in scam ads come from hotels or vacation apartments. If the person who listed the property can’t provide photos, this could also be a red flag. Some people aren’t very good with technology. But almost everyone should be able to take some photos and upload them to a listings site.

You should also watch out for anyone asking for money before you’ve viewed the property. Never hand over a deposit or any other cash before viewing the property in person. Be especially wary of transferring money through a wire transfer.

for rent
Image by Charleston’s TheDigitel

Use Reputable Websites or Agents

To avoid falling victim to a scam, use reputable housing agents in Lower Parkstone or recognized listings sites used by agents and landlords. Estate agents won’t accept a property onto their books without viewing it. And property websites have moderators. You could find a good property on a site like Craigslist, but you are more at risk of falling victim to a scam.

Active Viewings

When you go to view the property, don’t just passively take in everything you’re shown and told. Ask lots of questions about all different aspects of the house, from the heating system and water pressure to the insulation. You can find some great lists of questions to ask and things to look for. As well as asking questions, keep an eye out for any potential problems, such as damp. If possible, talk to neighbors or former/current tenants about noise levels and the general building and neighborhood. Doing all of these things will ensure that you get a property that is what the landlord or estate agent told you it was.

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About the Author: Socialh

SocialH Design blog is a place for Designers and Developers. We provide high quality articles and web resources in web design, social media, SEO, wordpress and blogging.

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