The charity Shelter has revealed that a million Britons may have fallen victim to scams involving a private tenancy or landlord in the last three years.
In a YouGov survey, 2% said they had fallen victim to such a scam and 4% knew someone else who this had happened to. The survey coincides with Shelter’s new campaign called ‘Evict Rogue Landlords’ to raise awareness of rogue landlords and con artists.
Fraudsters are behind some of the rent scams that Shelter is highlighting, including:
- Let and Run - Where con artists break into empty properties and then rent them out as their own and unsuspecting tenants hand over large sums of money as a deposit and rent, at which point the con artists disappear.
- Receipt Rip Off - A con artist will ask for money to be wired as a sign of good faith that a tenant is committed to letting a property. The landlord will ask that funds are wired to the tenant’s friend or relative to demonstrate that they can afford the property. They ask for proof of receipt and then withdraw the funds using the transfer details.
If you have lost money to a scam like this, report it to Action Fraud.
Read more about the Evict Rogue Landlords campaign on Shelter’s website.
Please note: Action Fraud is not responsible for the content on external websites.
To report a fraud, call Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or use our online fraud reporting tool.