Humbugged, duped, swindled… you want it? They’ve got it! An impressive scam is on the loose and fraudsters are spoofing Realtor.ca listings on Rentals.ca. This con trick is everywhere and has even happened to one of my own listings.
WHAT IS RENTALS.CA?
Rentals.ca is an unregulated website (a hoaxer’s paradise) that acts as a hub for finding rentals and allows anyone to post an ad… for free.
Hoodwinkers steal listing information (pictures, blurbs, etc.) and post it on Rentals.ca at a ‘too good to be true’ price. These are fake listings and they’re counting on getting your first and last months’ deposit before you can “visit the property”.
Here are a few red flags to watch out for:
1. They’re only reachable by using the “CONTACT PROPERTY” option.
2. They will call you by phone if needed.
3. They use a no pressure sales technique.
4. They are not operating in Canada.
5. They will deny your request to view the property before a deposit payment is given.
6. They pretend to use a reputable third-party management company (e.g. Hines Global Management Services)
Using a professional realtor is becoming more popular thanks to a regulated and efficient process. Services for landlords can include advertising, screening and all the required paperwork to make it a smooth task. Realtors can also help renters lease a property for no extra charge.
DON’T DO IT ALONE
With all the online rackets, boondoggles and diddles out there, why bother navigating the real estate world solo – especially when selling or buying a home? Imagine how many costly and dangerous real estate scams would exist if every home was a FSBO (For Sale by Owner)? Yowzars! So, dodge the dodgy dodgers of the real estate hustle and hire a realtor. You know whom to call!