Be careful of rent scams
Unfortunately the law does little to protective prospective tenants searching for somewhere to rent as there is no requirement for a person to shoe that they are licenced to be a landlord and that they are authorised to rent out a property that meets required standards. Demand for provide rented accommodation is at is highest ever and with the supply of available accomodation at its lowest many prospective tenants are victims of rent scams.
This happens where a property is advertised to rent, they hand over money but never get to move in to the property as they don't get keys or they don't work and may only have a first name and mobile number of the person to whom they paid cash to and that number may no longer be in use.
There is an element of risk in looking for private rented accommodation but this can be reduced by exercising caution and not rushing into a decision particularly if you have doubts. Never agree to rent a property without first having the opportunity to view it and ensure you are happy with the property and the terms and conditions of the letting.
Landlords have a legal obligation to register their tenancies with the Residential Tenancies Board(RTB) but have one month from the start of a tenancy to do so.
Do not hand over cash and insist upon a proper receipt. This should be done at the property and ensure that the keys work and you have proper contact details for the landlord/agent.
The introduction of a Deposit Protection Scheme in the future, whereby the deposit will be held by an independent third party will hopefully reduce the risk of scams. In the meantime, by following our guides, we hope that you are more aware of the issues when seeking private rented accommodation and if anything appears suspicious then you should report it to the relevant property website/social media provider and if you have been the victim of a scam contact the Gardai immediately.
What to do
- Contact Threshold if you have a problem which you can't deal with yourself
If you have any concerns that a letting may not be genuine contact the provider website/social media provider.
If you have been the victim of a scam contact the gardai immediately.
For more information from the Gardai on rent scams click here