The Cobourg Police Service is advising the community of new scams being reported that have targeted potential home renters in the Cobourg area.
You may see an ad for a home for sale that has been hijacked (copied from a real MLS listing), where the "owner" now wants to rent due to problems with the sale. It could be a phantom rental ad, for a non-existent property. It could even be random "phishing" style emails that you receive promising you first choice for a prime rental "in your area".
Finding housing, whether to purchase or rent, can be difficult so be methodical and don't make an emotional decision. If it seems too good to be true, it may very well be.
These are just some tactics you should consider.
1. Check, re-check and then check again before sending anyone money. There may be a time crunch, but once you give up your money, it may be hard to recover.
2. Meet the seller/renter in person. Ask for references from previous renters.
3. View the property in person, inside and out, not through online photos or video walk-throughs.
4. Check with local realtors. Know what's happening in the local market.
5. Require a rental/lease agreement
There are numerous reports and articles online regarding people who have been defrauded, but there are also many tips and resources you can use to protect yourself.
Any questions may be directed to the Cobourg Police Service by calling 905-372-6821.