Fraud Student Accommodation Scam Alert from Lancashire Police HQ. Seasonal rental fraud is a serious emerging trend with students looking for suitable accommodation around August, before the start of the new term. Don’t get caught out!
Fraudsters use a variety of websites to advertise available properties to rent, often at attractive rates and convenient locations. Adverts will seem genuine, accompanied by a number of photos and contact information to discuss your interest.
Due to demand, students will often agree to pay upfront fees to secure the property quickly, without viewing the property, only to discover that the fraudster posing as the landlord does not have ownership of the property, or often there are already tenants living there.
Student Accommodation Scam Protect Yourself!
Only use reputable companies
Do some online research such as Google maps and Street view to check the property does exist
Make an appointment to view the property in person.
Always, always, always view the property prior to paying any advance fees.
Look out for warning signs, such as landlords requesting a ‘holding deposit’ due to the property being in high demand.
A landlord will usually conduct some due diligence on any successful applicant. Be wary of handing over cash without the landlord requesting employment or character references.
If you feel you may have been scammed, contact the police as soon as possible!
Need to have someone checked out? Drop us a line of visit our Private Investigator Page.
A big thank you to:
Lancashire Constabulary HQ
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