If you’ve seen a property advertised at a really cheap rent, you may be concerned that it is a scam, writes Roger Naden.
You’re right to be cautious if the rent is a lot cheaper than the market rate.
Don’t be hurried into paying a deposit before you view the property and look at your tenancy agreement.
Viewing the property is important - not least so that you can see if it’s as advertised.
If the landlord refuses, or is evasive about your request to view, take this as a possible warning sign they are not legitimate.
Even if you have seen the property, it’s still important to check your tenancy agreement carefully.
You should expect your tenancy agreement to give the name and address of the landlord, along with their contact details. Ask for this information to be added if it’s not already included.
If no contract is provided, or information on your landlord is missing, this is another red flag that the letting could be a scam.
Finally, it’s a good idea to see if the landlord is a member of a professional landlord association or is accredited by the local council. Membership isn’t compulsory, but it will mean they are legitimate and will operate to a minimum standard.
Trust your instincts and if in any doubt, don’t part with your money.
For further help on identifying possible scams come and see us, or call our advice line.
Citizens Advice Derbyshire Districts offers free, confidential and independent advice on any subject and you can call in to see us in person or contact us by telephone.
Citizens Ad ice Derbyshire Districts is at Town Hall, Bank Road, Matlock.
The office is open from Monday to Thursday, 10am to 4pm and on Fridays from 10am to 2pm.
You can telephone for advice on: 03004568390 on weekdays from 9am to 4pm.