Busting Myths About Rental Scams
You’ve probably talked to people about scams before. Scams are, unfortunately, an integrated part of the economy. Whether you’re looking for a job, looking for romance, trying to buy something, or trying to buy a home, there are people who may be out to scam you.
However, despite their prolific nature, many people don’t spend time getting to know more about these scams. Instead, they rely on the knowledge they think they have regarding scams. Instead of just using a collection of myths, make sure you understand the actual truths.
In this case, we are out to bust the myths surrounding rental scams, including:
Only Unintelligent People Fall for Rental Scams
There’s an unfortunately common belief that only unintelligent people fall for scams in general. The belief is that scams only affect people who aren’t smart enough to see through the scammer’s lies. Therefore, if you’re smart enough, you don’t have to worry about the possibility of rental scams. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
In fact, many smart people fall for scams of all kinds, and that includes rental scams. Rental scams can actually be incredibly nuanced and very put-together.
Just because you’ve fallen for a scam doesn’t mean you’re unintelligent. And just because you’re intelligent doesn’t mean you’re immune from falling for scams. You simply need to be alert for scams, no matter what you perceive your intelligence to be.
Rental Scams Are Easy to Spot
This typically plays off the first concept. Because there’s a common misconception that only unintelligent people fall for scams, many people also have a misconception that it’s because rental scams are simple. In fact, as rental scams become more popular and more common, it can become more and more difficult to tell them apart from genuine rental opportunities.
Rental scams can take many forms. Although there are definitely a few telltale signs, like being asked to pay the rental owner by wiring money in advance, these scams don’t follow one single thread. That’s one of the reasons why they can be so difficult to spot and understand at times. You have to consider a variety of potential risk factors and evaluate each one.
If You Can Tour the Property, It’s Not a Scam
A common precaution many experts suggest people take is to tour the property in person to help weed out any scammers. Because a large majority of scammers pretend to be renting homes using pictures they’ve stolen off the internet, this can thin out a good chunk of rental scammers. However, it’s important to remember that it won’t get rid of all of them.
Though much less common than scammers that just use pictures from the internet, there are certainly scammers that can gain illegal access to homes and give potential renters fake tours. It lends the scammer an air of legitimacy that they’re all too happy to use to their advantage. Just because you can tour the home shouldn’t negate any other warning signs you find.
You Don’t Have to Take Precautions Against Rental Scams
This is one of the biggest myths of them all. The fact of the matter is, you absolutely need to be prepared to take precautions against rental scams of all types. If you’re looking for a new home to rent, you should always consider a listing as being potentially false until you’re able to prove that it’s genuine. The best way to weed out fake listings from real listings is to use a property lookup site like PeopleFinders.
With this kind of site, you don’t have to think about every aspect of the rental listing that could possibly indicate fraud, then go through the list and make an educated guess. Instead, you can perform an address lookup to learn more about the person who owns the property you’re interested in renting.
Does some of the information in the address lookup not match up with the information you’re getting from the supposed owner? You can try and dig deeper with a background check on the person you’re dealing with. If things keep looking suspicious, you should just drop that rental property and move on.
Rental scams can be devastating. They can cause you to lose out on hundreds or even thousands of dollars, not to mention the fact that they can potentially leave you homeless if things go far enough. Instead of relying on myths you believe about rental scams, you should only rely on facts.
By understanding more about the people you’re dealing with, you can feel more confident that you’re not walking into a scam. Keep reading the PeopleFinders blog to learn more about how to keep yourself safe from all kinds of scams.
Image attribution: Monkey Business Images – www.shutterstock.comTags: Address Lookup, Scammer
Categorized in: Scams