Rental property listing scams on the increase

Rental property listing scams typically aim to steal money from interested renters. They will try to get you to pay for a security deposit or move-in fee without ever seeing the apartment or rental unit, and keep the money without any intention of renting to you. The last thing one should be concerned about when renting a home is being scammed. Unfortunately, scammers are becoming increasingly prevalent not only in the real estate industry, but also with scammers pretending to be landlords, and it is essential to be vigilant throughout the process.

At least a handful of residents at the coast have fallen victim to a property rental scam that is advertised on social media. Under the profile, Nathan Smith on Facebook, the man advertises various questionable low-priced properties for rent with a cell phone number of the “landlord” in “the comment section of the posts. The “landlord” in this case is deceased John Robinson who lost his life some time ago on the B2 coastal road.
Namib Times phoned the “landlord” yesterday after receiving several phone calls from residents who have fallen victim to the scam. When asked if it is possible to view the property, the “landlord” explained he operates on a first come first serve basis. The scammer operates by scheduling a property viewing for later in the day, but first expects a payment of N$1000 through e-wallet to “secure” the property, and first waits for a deposit from another potential tenant. He explains the reason for an e-wallet payment is because his bank is in a negative and any payments into his account will be deducted. He then requests the victim’s phone number and sends proof of “his identity”, which is the identity document of the deceased Mr John Robinson. After receiving his payment from his victim, he blocks the victim’s number.
Warning signs to prevent being the victim of a rental scam you should watch for is if they don’t want to meet you in person, they want you to move in immediately without ever seeing the property, they ask for rent or a security deposit before signing a lease, the price is too good, there is no tenant screening process.

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