The internet has made it easy for renters to search for their ideal apartments. However, alongside the rise of the digital age came the increase in apartment rental scams. This means that your search is likely to lead you to questionable listings. Scammers use various tactics to lure unsuspecting renters, and before you know it, you might find yourself having lost your money and with no apartment. In this article, we'll give you tips on how to avoid apartment rental scams and find your dream apartment in Jacksonville, FL.
Once you find an apartment that you like online, the first thing you should do is research. You can find information about the apartment building and management online. Some reputable apartment management companies host their websites that provide details about their properties. You can also go through reviews on social media platforms. A quick check on the management's reputation can help you to know if the property in question is credible.
Once you have found an apartment and its management company, you can verify if the owner is listed on the property deed by checking the county recorder's database. This database contains all the property history in the county. If the name of the person you are dealing with doesn't match the name on the record, then that is a red flag.
If an apartment deal sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. Many rent scams center on luring unsuspecting renters with bargain prices for luxurious apartments. Scammers use pictures of expensive apartments to attract consumers to their listings. The idea is to ask for a deposit before processing paperwork, only for you to realize that the apartment doesn't exist after you pay the deposit.
Before you sign up for an apartment, ensure you inspect the property physically, or have someone you trust, like a friend or a hired third party to do it for you. A physical inspection assures you that the apartment you're dealing with exists. Inspect for defects such as leaks, cracks, and signs of poor maintenance. If you notice that the property doesn't match what was advertised, then it's best not to trust the person who advertised it.
If you feel uncomfortable with the person you are dealing with, it's better to walk away. Scammers use aggressive tactics to pressure you to give them your personal and financial information. If the person you're dealing with is pressuring you to wire them money, is unwilling to show you credentials, or if the offer looks suspicious, then it's best to go with your instincts and walk away.
As you search for an apartment to rent in Jacksonville, Florida, try to be vigilant. Always research apartments, verify ownership, inspect the unit physically, and trust your gut. By doing this, you will avoid becoming another victim of apartment rental scams. Remember, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is. If you're on the hunt for an apartment in Jacksonville, contact The Lofts at Wildlight today and schedule an appointment. Our team is happy to show you around and answer any questions that you have.