Home/Room Rental Scam
WHAT IS A HOME/ROOM RENTAL SCAM?
There are three versions of this scam. In one, you’re offered a room or house for rent and come under pressure to pay the rent in advance. In reality the scammers are not authorised to rent out the property or the property may not even exist.
In another variation, the scammers pretend to be interested in renting a property you own. They claim to have made payment for the deposit, after which you receive fake emails from PayPal asking for a fee before the payment can be released to you. The scammers may even ask you to help pay their movers' fees.
In a third, scammers may put up fake property listings online and and contact victims through WhatsApp pretending to be property agents. The scammers then ask the victims for deposits in order to secure appointments to view the properties. Victims will realise that they have been scammed after the scammers cease contact with them.
Look out for these scam signs
Even if a listing appears legitimate, it could still be a scam.
If the photos of a property do not closely match the description of the unit it could be a scam.
Potential tenants who offer to rent the apartment/room without seeing it first.
Look out for PayPal emails asking for an admin fee before payment can be made.
Housing agent asking for payment to secure viewing.
How to stay safe
You can check a real estate agent's details and if they are licensed by entering their phone number here: https://www.cea.gov.sg/aceas/public-register/sales/1
Home/Room Rental Scam: Real Stories
07 Oct 2023 | Home/Room Rental Scam
The scammer impersonates a real estate agent and posts rental properties on Facebook Marketplace. They offer attractive deals and claim there are multiple interested parties in line. To secure the property,…...
01 Jun 2023 | Home/Room Rental Scam
My family and I were searching for a new house to rent, and I came across a posting on Carousel. Without hesitation, I reached out to the person via WhatsApp to express interest, and he promptly called…...
21 May 2023 | Home/Room Rental Scam
I came across a listing on Carousell for a rental unit posted by a Carousell account named Keaen Lim (@K3A3NL1M-82601). After inquiring about the availability of the unit, I received a call from an agent.…...