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Avoiding Rental Scams: Identifying Fake Photos

By June 16, 2017 April 1st, 2019 No Comments

In the age of the internet, where every type of transaction is completed online, leasees can educate themselves on the red flags of renting in order to ensure they get a real place at a real value. Beside credit check schemes and suspicious behavior, false listings, in particular, fake photos, are another danger to watch out for. When you do find the right place, a Delaware Renters Insurance policy can protect you from unexpected risks and dangers.

Be smart.

Many legitimate lessors want to provide professional looking photos for their ads. High-quality photos increase the selling potential so many legitimate sellers will invest in this service. One of the first steps to detect fraud is to compare the description with the house with the photographed images. If the description is vague or is undervalued for the location, this is a major red flag.

Forbes warns to be wary of overly Photoshopped property photos. Ask the owner for additional photos — an honest lessor will always have them. Or ask your agent to use technology like FaceTime or Skype to show you the property live. At the very least, use Google Earth and Google’s Street View feature to confirm that the property you’re renting actually exists at the address advertised. You can also use those Google tools to get an unvarnished look at the property’s exterior.

Be especially wary if the lessor gives an excuse for not having more photos, especially regular ones that were not staged and shot by a professional.

Trust your instincts.

If you think the photos are too good to be true, they probably are. Another tip: Use Google to image source the photo. If it’s a legitimate image, it shouldn’t have a long list of sources from other places it has been used online. This will help you identify whether the image was just taken from another website, is a stock photo, or is legitimate.

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.