Forget about ground rent scandal, a new type of real estate scandal is here again. It is the type where the "lessor" who cannot show you the house, in reality, asks you for money in advance. This is not to scare you away from house-hunting. We are just going to give you some details so as not to be a victim.
What to watch out for
This type of rent scandal usually targets victims through ad pages from anywhere in the world. They usually publish this type of advertisement in the main capitals in Europe. The properties are real estate in an exceptional state, with surreal characteristics and almost dreamlike prices. The photos are of a high quality and show perfectly maintained properties with a contemporary design.
In most cases, the contact preferred by the advertiser is usually by email and if you provide a phone, they do not usually respond to it.
The common tricks used
Once the interested person contacts the advertiser, he responds to his request by telling a story which is in most cases quite improbable and usually follows the same pattern
This is someone who claims to live abroad and who is looking for someone to take care of their home which is why it has a low price. He is more interested in taking good care of his house than his own economic benefit. He usually embellishes the story with too much personal data, something that is not usual. Many times, for fraudsters outside of UK, the answer is translated with an automatic translator and for this reason, there are phrases that do not make any sense.
The only thing is that only he has the keys and to be able to send them you need to show him a real interest in the property. To do this, he requests that you advance part of the deposit or some monthly payment through a money transfer company, such as Money Gram, Western Union or similar systems, and that through them the keys will also be sent. All this without the interested person having a way to visit the property until they receive them.
When you see these signs while house-hunting, you know what to do! Be careful. Don't fall for another ground rent scandal.