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Avoid rental scams when house hunting

6 March 2019

People looking for accommodation should be on their guard when they receive emails about rental apartments. Several reports about rental scam emails have come in recently. The sender is always the same landlord.

The victims had all placed an advertisement for accommodation and were contacted by email with some good news: an offer for a suitable home for rent.

However, the rent needed to be confirmed before any visit could be made to the property. This confirmation involved paying the first month’s rent in advance by using a link given in the email. This was possible by transferring a first month’s rent, to be paid via a link in an e-mail.

Unfortunately, after payment, the landlord disappeared without leaving a trace. And a visit to the ‘rental’ accommodation proved to be a sore disappointment: either the property simply didn’t exist or it was already inhabited.

Our advice
If you’ve had a similar experience, then please report to Fraud Help Desk. If you have lost money after falling victim to a rental scam, please also report to the police.