To the renters in New York: Don’t worry – the state has your back. In an effort to cut down on the number of victims across the state, the New York Division of Consumer Protection is warning consumers to be wary of apartment rental scams which often take advantage of immigrants and first-time tenants.
According to the Buffalo News, the perpetrators “deceive consumers with false promises” to secure rental units while “illegally charging up-front fees, commissions, and deposits.” As of mid-September of this year, 211 complaints have been filed, including 121 in the New York City area alone. The state is urging all those who have been victimized to report illegal activity to the Division of Consumer Protection. To further protect renters, the state has issued the following set of rental tips:
- Be sure the real estate agent or information vendor is licensed in the state of New York.
- Make sure the property you want is actually for rent.
- Refuse to pay any up-front fee or other money before renting an apartment.
- Obtain a receipt for any deposit or payment that you make, and avoid making cash payments to ensure a paper trail.
- Ask for copies of all documents related to the rental and keep them in a secure location.
Moving or relocating and searching for a place for rent? Check out Rent It Today and browse rental listings in cities and areas across the U.S. From houses and condos to apartments and townhomes, Rent It Today can help you find a rental that is right for you.