Boston Property Management: How to Avoid Rental Scams

  Boston Property Management

Boston Property Management: How to Avoid Rental Scams

The worst thing that can happen to a landlord is to be scammed by a renter.  Scams can happen to anyone if one is not careful. There are warning signs on rental websites which help landlords and property managers avoid these scams. This guide takes a look at the various scams and how one can avoid being scammed.

False Check Refunds

This is a scam where scammers pay a security deposit and rent without viewing the property.  The scam is evident when they pay in the form of a cashier’s check in excess of the amount and then ask for the excess amount back. It’s no surprise when the check turns out to be counterfeit. If this ever happens to you, just don’t send any amount till the check clears.

Lawsuit Scams

This is one of the oldest scams in the book.  Tenants move into the property after signing a lease and then hit the landlord with a lawsuit. The lawsuit could be anything about the use of lead paint, mold in the house or unsafe property. In most of these cases, the tenants usually end up losing, as there is not much evidence. The issue is that they get to live in the property for free while the case is in court.  Even if the courts allow the landlord to pursue lost rent, not much can be done if there is someone with no assets or income.

Smoke-and-Mirrors Scam

This is where con-artists take pictures from authentic listings and post them online. They use fake email addresses/numbers and offer below market rates. Interested parties are then asked for advance payments so that they can reserve that property.

Boston Property Management: How to defend yourself against Property Scams

Limit Information

This is a good method as you will only get serious renters who are interested in the property. You will also get a chance to screen the caller before you give out the address to the location. Don’t use your cell number or office number when you place that ad. It’s a good idea to use a burner phone or a free service such as Google Voice. It’s also a good idea to use a free email address for correspondence.


it helps to ask all the right questions on the phone before you show them the property. Scammers will always tend to avoid answering questions and deep inquiries. It will also save you a lot of time.

If you have an interested tenant, make sure that you do a proper background check so you can verify their employment, income, credit history, criminal background, and check their civil case history.  Check to see if there are any red flags such as lawsuits against their landlord.


We hope you liked our guide “Boston Property Management: How to Avoid Rental Scams”.

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