Today’s blog will discuss how to avoid online scams.
Technology is constantly evolving, changing and growing. For the most part, that’s great and it means we can take care of your property more efficiently than ever. The explosion of new technology has its drawbacks, however. Online scams are on the rise, and with everybody doing everything digitally, identity theft has really become a problem. You have to protect yourself, and today we’re sharing a few tips on how to ensure you don’t become a victim of an online scam when you’re buying, selling or renting real estate.
Make sure you know who you’re talking to. If someone inquires about your rental property or offers you a great investment, find out who they are. Find out if you’re talking to someone local or someone in a far off location. Ask questions to get details and do some checking up on anyone who wants to do business with you.
Exercise caution any time someone wants you to go to a property alone. If you are talking to a seller about a potential investment property, that person should be willing to meet you at the property. If you are interested in renting a property online, the property manager or agent should meet you there to show the place. Once you’re at the property, make sure you can go inside. It’s a huge red flag if you get to the house and then the agent or manager explains that you can’t get in to look around.
Trust your instinct and do your due diligence. If something seems off, conduct a little extra research to find out what’s really going on. You can check public property records and tax records to verify that a specific person actually owns a piece of property. Any time you’re negotiating with someone about a purchase or a sale, you need to be sure you’re talking to the rightful owner or agent.
Never send anyone money without seeing the property or getting the keys to the place. A number of online scams have been conducted where an individual posts pictures of a house that is not his own, and then asks potential renters to send him a deposit. You don’t want to send any money to someone you don’t know.
Online scams are out there, and you need to be vigilant about protecting yourself and your investment from dishonest people. If you have any questions about these issues, please contact us at Rent it Network, and we’d be happy to tell you more.