Posted September 18, 2023
Are you on the hunt for the perfect rental apartment? In today's digital age, finding a place to live has become more accessible than ever. However, this convenience also comes with risks, as rental scams have become increasingly prevalent. To ensure a smooth and secure rental experience, it's essential to be aware of the potential pitfalls and take steps to protect yourself. At Deveraux Apartment Communities, we prioritize your safety and want to help you avoid falling victim to rental scams.
Here are some valuable tips and red flags to keep in mind during your search for a new home.
1. Verify the Source: Always double-check the source of the rental listing. Deveraux Apartment Communities typically lists our properties on our official website or reputable rental platforms. Beware of listings on suspicious websites or social media platforms, especially if the contact information seems dubious.
2. Contact via Official Channels: When you inquire about a rental property, make sure to contact the property management company through their official channels. At Deveraux Apartment Communities, we use deveraux.ca email addresses to communicate with potential tenants. Scammers often use generic email addresses, such as Gmail or Yahoo, to impersonate property managers.
3. Schedule a Viewing: Legitimate property management companies want potential tenants to visit the property before signing a lease. At Deveraux, we take this seriously – we rarely have renters sign a lease without viewing the suite and the property first. If a landlord or agent refuses to let you see the property in person or pressures you into signing without a visit, it's a major red flag.
4. Online Applications: In today's digital age, many rental applications are conducted online. Deveraux Apartment Communities offers online applications, but rest assured, we will not send a PDF copy unless requested, and any documents will be branded. Scammers may ask for personal information through unsecured channels, so be cautious and only provide sensitive details to reputable property management companies.
5. Secure Payment Options: Payment is a crucial part of the rental process, and scammers often exploit this step. At Deveraux, we provide secure payment options through our online payment portal. Alternatively, renters can pay in cash at our leasing office. We will never ask for e-transfers or request money through apps like Venmo or CashApp. While we do offer paid holds for new apartments, holds are completely refundable, and we would use our secure online portal to process the payment.
6. No Application Fees or Deposits to View: Deveraux Apartment Communities will never ask for an application fee or a deposit just to view an apartment. Money doesn't enter the equation until after you've viewed the property and your application has been approved. Be wary of anyone who demands payment upfront before you've had a chance to see the place.
Identifying Red Flags
- Too Good to Be True: If a rental listing seems too good to be true, it probably is. Be skeptical of exceptionally low rental prices for high-demand properties.
- Pressure to Act Quickly: Scammers often pressure potential renters to make quick decisions, claiming that there are multiple interested parties. Take your time and thoroughly research before committing.
- Incomplete or Suspicious Information: Incomplete or inconsistent property details, vague descriptions, and poor grammar and spelling are red flags. Legitimate listings should provide comprehensive information.
- Request for Personal Information: Be cautious if you're asked to provide sensitive information upfront, especially before viewing the property.
- Cash Payments Only: If a landlord insists on cash payments and refuses other secure options, it's a sign of potential fraud. Additionally, if they ask for a wire transfer e-transfer, be wary. These are the same as cash in that you can’t get it back once it’s sent – and remember, Deveraux Apartment Communities doesn’t use either of these payment methods.
- Lack of Documentation: Beware of landlords or agents who avoid providing proper documentation, such as a lease agreement or a written receipt for payments.
At Deveraux Apartment Communities, we maintain strict protocols to guarantee a transparent and trustworthy rental process. Feel confident when choosing us as your property management company, knowing that your safety is of utmost importance to us.