Cheap Apartment Rental Scams

May 5, 2010 at 4:14 pm | Posted in Rental Scams | 1 Comment

Finding cheap apartments for rent is a major priority for many renters in these hard economic times. Unfortunately, scammers are preying on these types of searchers.

Some tips to ensure you are not being scammed:

1) Is the price to good to be true? Use Rental Rate tools to help.

2) Are they just communicating with you via email? Red flag if they don’t want to talk to you on the phone.

3) Are they asking for a cashiers check? Don’t pay via cashiers check.

4) Have you seen the place and walked around with the Property Manager or owner.

1 Comment »

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  1. I have worked in the NYC Real Estate Industry, in one form or another, since 1996, and I have seen many-a-scams. The following is a classic scam and one that is easy to fall for, and it goes like this: An ad is placed in a local paper advertising an apartment for a ‘Very Good’ Price, usually far below market, BUT is justified by terms like “No Fee” rent stabilized, rent controlled, or prime sublet. The angle is to make the consumer feel as though there will be much competition for this listing. Then a viewing time is scheduled, usually some form of “open house,” again the intent is to establish competition. Once your interested, and almost EVERYONE is, you are asked to fill out an application and leave a “Credit Check Fee,” typically $100 or so. The caveat hear is that you are told those who leave cash, money order or cashier’s check, will have applications reviewed FIRST (But, you can leave a personal check, if you’d like, snicker). So, most leave Cash, because, lets face it, you want the apartment and its better than paying a fee. Then, the so-called-agent waits a day or two and then grabs the stack of applications and begins calling everyone… “I’m sorry, but the apartment was rented to someone else. Thank you for applying, I’m not sure I’ll have another deal like that, But if I do, I’ll give you a call.” BS, you will NEVER get a call and he/she smiles every time they hang up the phone!- This is a VERY Hard Scam to prove and works Every Time, the only defense here is to stick to the old adage, “If it’s too good to be true, Than It IS!

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