Apartment for Rent: 5 Tips to Avoid Scams

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You have just found the ideal apartment: well located, newly built, modern and quite large. The photos are superb, and the price of the rental is more than affordable. You are already wriggling on the spot. You’ve sent an email to the owner and he begins asking you an abundance of personal information. Then, he requires a $1200 deposit to avoid unnecessary travel to the dwelling. Is it a scam? Absolutely, and it's good that you’ve asked yourself, because some might not do it! According to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Center (CAC), between 250 and 350 Canadians file complaints a year for such scams.

Sometimes it is hard to discern the truth from the lies in a rental housing ad. Wondering how you can possibly prevent these problems? Discover our 5 tips to find an apartment for rent while avoiding those that are a scam!

1. Avoid Paying in Cash

Most false owners ask to pay in cash. Opt for checks, online payments or Interac as they are trackable.

2. Never Leave a Deposit

The Régie du Logement forbids landlords from asking for deposits. Scams often ask for “refundable” deposits before even visiting the apartment the first time in order to reserve it.

The only payment permitted before the lease start date is the first month’s rent at the time of lease signing.

3. Always Sign a Lease

Verbal leases are permissible in some cases, but it is best to have everything in writing, especially the lease.

4. Avoid Signing a Lease without Seeing the Apartment.

If you are out of town, send a friend to go visit in your place or ask to go on a video call tour of the unit.

Some landlords will try to have you sign a lease without seeing more than pictures. These pictures can be enhanced and might not be representative of the apartment you are signing for.

5. Meet the Landlord in Person

It is important to either meet the landlord or a company representative in person. Additionally, make sure the landlord provides you with a legitimate physical address and phone number.

Finding an apartment is no easy task, especially if you do not know the law and your rights as a tenant. Rental companies, such as Akelius, work with each tenant to answer their questions and their apartment needs. Our official website informs you about all the features and photos of the apartments for rent. This ensures that you do business with regulatory owners. Contact us for more information and for a visit!

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