AARP AARP States Virginia Scams & Fraud

Rental Housing Scams

Renting a home or apartment is a big expense but it could be an even bigger one if the rental is a scam. Criminals copy legitimate listings and look for easy cash by collecting the first month’s rent, deposit, and application fees and then bolt before handing over the keys. Numerous versions of rental frauds abound – some are bait-and-switch while others will attempt to rent out properties that are already leased or otherwise unavailable.  

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These fake rental schemes happen every year and would-be renters are losing hundreds or even thousands of dollars. When renting a place, watch out for scammers who ask you to sign before seeing anything or request payment via wire transfer, peer to peer apps or cash. Do your research on the property and owner and read agreements carefully. 

Be a fraud fighter!  If you can spot a scam, you can stop a scam. 

Visit the AARP Fraud Watch Network at www.aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork  or call the AARP Fraud Watch Helpline at 1-877-908-3360 and speak to trained staff or volunteers for help with a fraud encounter. 

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