Preventing Rental Scams: Identifying Strange Behavior

In our previous articles, we discussed how renters can become aware of renter scams and how to identify what types of free credit checks were fraudulent. The more you know, the less likely you are to fall victim to a rental scam. In this next installment, we’re going to discuss some other key factors to be aware of, including suspicious messages and the types of money requests that are not typical of a legitimate rental transaction. When you find the right place, don’t forget to protect your dwelling with a Delaware Renters Insurance policy.

Money scams.

This is the most common type of scheme that happens online. Most often, landlords request money up front before the house is even seen in person. As we explained in our previous blog, prospective renters should refrain from sending money to anyone before the unit is physically seen and inspected. The following types of transaction should be avoided:

  • Wire transfers.
  • MoneyGrams.
  • Western Union transfers.
  • Sending money to someone you haven’t personally met.
  • Sending money to landlords who are “overseas.”
  • Providing personal or financial information to someone online.
  • Sending money to landlords who claim to be affiliated with Zillow or other house hunting sites.

Suspicious messages.

Messages that are riddled with spelling and grammar mistakes are red flags. In addition, “landlords” who spill personal information or sad stories in an effort to get the renter to rent their unit should also be cause for concern. Lastly, European spelling of words such as “favourite” as opposed to “favorite” is also a sign of a scam, as these “overseas” landlords are often not who they claim to be.

In addition, messages involving stories of family or financial issues, or of agents who charge too high a premium are usually fraud, explains Zillow.

About IFS Insurance

At IFS Insurance, we specialize in protecting homeowners and renters throughout Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. Our quality solutions and commitment to excellence has allowed us to serve these states for over 50 years. For more information about our products, we invite you to contact us today at (800) 598-0420.

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