Leasing a Holiday Home

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I’m looking to rent a holiday home over the Internet. Is there anything I should look out for?

Prospective holidaymakers must be extremely careful when renting holiday homes and cottages as rental listings promoted on the Internet are a popular target for scammers.  

Unfortunately some scammers go to extraordinary lengths to demonstrate their genuine interest in the property, posing as owners or real estate agents. Many scam property addresses and photographs are actually genuine and have been copied from legitimate agents’ websites, then offered at unrealistically low prices.
 
Here’s some tips to help you avoid being scammed:       
  • Tell-tale signs of a scam advertisement include incorrect spelling, grammatical errors or pixilated photographs
  • Insist on inspecting inside the holiday home, not just on the outside
  • If you live overseas, ask someone you trust to make local enquiries
  • Don’t rely on referrals provided from anyone recommending the holiday home unless you know the person personally
  • Avoid paying any funds via a money transfer transaction
  • If the holiday home owner or agent lives overseas or interstate from the property this is a warning sign that it is a scam, ask for local telephone numbers and addresses and have these verified
  • Conduct an internet search and reviews on the name of the owner or agent offering the holiday home
  • Keep all written correspondence about the holiday home including banking details and a copy of the listing itself
  • Watch out for conspicuously less expensive holiday home rentals. They are probably a scam.
  • Never send money in order to be posted keys to a property
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