Tue 25 Jan 2022
Inspired by a recent article featured on property Industry eye, link available below, around the dangers of using Social Media when finding a rental property, here at Stephenson Browne we thought we would provide some details to assist you in limiting the risks with your search. , which can be found below
Where have you seen the property advertised?
When looking for a property it is important to consider when the property is advertised on Social Media if it has come from a reputable source. Is it advertised on a reputable Estate Agents website and social media page or has it just been posted into a buying and selling group.
As a company Stephenson Browne will not post our properties into buying and selling groups but we do advertise from our own Social Media pages so that you can be safe in knowing the information has come from us.
Do the photos look legitimate?
Do the photos look like they could have had any watermarks removed from them? Things to look out for are blurred sections of the photo where a watermark could have been removed. Some people will go to great lengths in order to pass other peoples photos off as their own.
Is the person / company who are advertising the property part of any protection schemes?
ALL companies who let out properties have a legal requirement to join a Client Money Protection Scheme. A certificate of membership has to be displayed in their office branches and on their website and a copy can be provided on request. This ensures that your monies are protected in a bank or building society approved by the Financial Standards Authority and clients can be compensated should the business fall into financial difficulty.
Will your deposit be protected?
When paying a deposit, you should be provided with the name of the scheme and terms and conditions for this provider. ALL deposits must be retained under one of the three government deposit schemes. Verify that the person/company to whom you are sending your deposit is a member of the scheme and has a certificate of evidence.
Before transferring any rent in advance monies .. ask yourself
Have you actually viewed the property?
Has the advertiser got possession of the property to enable you access to view?
Have you been provided with a draft Tenancy Agreement, How to Rent Guide, Gas safety and Electrical safety certificates?
Our recommendations would be to always start your search on one of the property portals such as Rightmove , On the Market or Zoopla as the majority of letting agents will advertise their properties on at least one of these. Stephenson Browne are proud to say that we advertise on all 3 so whether you are looking to rent in Staffordshire or South Cheshire , we have branches based in Newcastle Under Lyme , Alsager , Crewe and Sandbach that are staffed with property experts who are there to make your journey of finding the perfect property as easy as 1 , 2 , 3.
At the very least, if you see a property on social media, do a sweep of the above sites and see if you can spot it with an agent…. Call them to verify the authenticity off the listing. Sometimes it may be the owner themselves, more often than not it wont be.
So get in touch today with any of our teams and request to be added to our mailing lists to help you with your search.
Alsager – 01270 883130 Option 2 for Lettings
Crewe – 01270 25251
Newcastle – 01782 625 734 Option 2 for Lettings
Sandbach– 01270 763200 Option 2 for Lettings