Be Aware of Fraudulent Listings on ANY Vacation Rental Site
Did you know, that when searching for a vacation rental using Facebook or ANY other advertising page, group, craigslist, or website, guests should look for these tell-tale red flags that the listing may be fraudulent:
- You are offered an unbelievably low rental rate. Fraudulent listings often reflect a rental rate that is very low, to attract as many potential renters as possible. A deal that sounds too good to be true probably is.
- You are asked to act quickly. Fraudulent listings often attempt to create a false sense of urgency in an attempt to get people to send them money before they have time to think the situation through.
- You are asked to send money via a wire transfer. Fraudulent listings often ask people to send money to them by wire transfer. When you send money by wire transfer, it is the same as sending cash and you have no way to get it back.
Tips to avoid a fraudulent listing:
- Search our website. All of the homeowners with vacation rentals listed on on oceanlakesrentalsbyowner.com have already been verified!
- Don’t be rushed. A legitimate homeowner will not place pressure on you to act quickly.
- Don’t let your excitement blind you. Do not accept last-minute changes to the terms of the transaction, such as how or where the payment is sent.
- Trust your instincts. Apply some skepticism to your search; you’re more likely to see the red flags, like suspicious behavior, and odd requests. If something doesn’t feel right – its not!
- Be cautious of communicating with anyone demonstrating poor grammar, poor sentence structure, and the use of statements of phrases that are not commonly used here in the United States.
- Do not respond to private messages through Facebook that the sender did not tell you in advance, by commenting on your Facebook post, that they would be sending.
- Check the description. Copy a chunk of descriptive text from the listing and paste it into a search engine. Can you find the property elsewhere? Is the contact information the same?
- Research the homeowner. Before sending any money or personal information, research the homeowner in one of the following ways:
Call Ocean Lakes at 843-238-5636. Ask the following; “Does (homeowner name) have the right to rent site# ( ____ ) to me?”
Ask the Homeowner to send a picture of their Horry County Business License
Ask the Homeowner to send a picture of their tax bill or receipt, or a utility bill or receipt, with their name and site number on it.
Research the Homeowner/property on the Horry County website by searching Online Land Records http://www.horrycounty.org/OnlineServices/LandRecords.aspx , or by searching Online Tax Records https://horrycountytreasurer.qpaybill.com/Taxes/TaxesDefaultType4.aspx
9. Be a regular. If you rent a home that you like, stick with it! You’ll develop a relationship with the homeowner that will make planning your next vacation a breeze!