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How To Spot A Scam Listing

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Online marketplaces like RentBoard have made it easy to browse for your next rental property.  However, it's essential to be cautious as not all platforms offer the same level of safety. Some listings may pose a higher risk of potential fraud, making it crucial to exercise diligence when browsing for your next home.


What is a Scam Listing? 

A rental scam is a deceptive scheme targeting individuals seeking rental properties, typically designed to extract money or personal information from unsuspecting tenants. These scams often revolve around fraudulent property listings, either entirely fabricated or falsely claimed by impostors posing as landlords. The methods employed by scammers can vary, but the ultimate goal is to convince tenants to send money or disclose information that allows the scammer to exploit their finances.

Let's have a look at some red flags to look out for when viewing a listing online.


1. Unrealistically Low Rental Prices:

If the listed rental price seems too good to be true, exercise caution. Scammers often use low prices to attract victims. Conduct thorough research on market rates in the area to determine whether the listed price aligns with the current market value.


2. Urgency to Move In Without Property Viewing:

Avoid any rental arrangement where the landlord insists on immediate occupancy without allowing you to see the property. Scammers may claim unavailability for property tours, leading to potential scams. Always insist on inspecting the property before committing to any lease agreements.


3. Request for Payment Before Lease Signing:

Be cautious if the property manager asks for rent or a security deposit before signing a lease. Legitimate transactions involve signing a lease agreement before any significant payments. Scammers might pressure you to wire money, especially if they claim to live overseas.


4. Poorly Written Listings:

Legitimate landlords take the time to create well-crafted, error-free listings. Listings with numerous typos, poor grammar, or excessive punctuation are likely the work of scammers. Pay attention to the quality of the listing as an indicator of legitimacy.


5. Absence of Tenant Screening Process:

Reputable landlords typically implement a thorough tenant screening process. If a landlord shows little interest in your Rental Application or credit check, it could be a sign of a scam. Professional landlords prioritize finding responsible tenants and follow established screening procedures.


6. Always Sign A Lease:

A trustworthy landlord will provide a complete and transparent lease agreement. If the landlord does not require a lease be vigilant, remember a lease agreement protects both you and the landlord.

Protecting yourself from rental scams requires vigilance and awareness. By recognizing these warning signs, you can navigate the rental market with confidence, ensuring a secure and legitimate housing arrangement. Stay informed, trust your instincts, and prioritize thorough verification before committing to any rental agreement.

Check out these tips and blogs below found on for more information.