Stay safe flat-hunting online

If you’re job hunting in the capital, chances are that at some point you’ll be looking to find a place to live. As buying a new house on a starting salary is out of the question, a flatshare in London can be a very attractive option. However, with so many flatshare schemes around you have to be wary of several scams and cons just waiting to part you of your cash.

The friendly staff at EasyRoomMate offer the following pointers on how to avoid some of the pitfalls that can surround the process…

  • Scammers will tell you to send through a rental deposit to the secure the room as yours. Never do this as there’s a good chance you’re going to arrive at the property to find that it’s not yours to rent, or that it not even a habitable structure!
  • Never send money using Western Union. It’s relatively easy for scammers to collect the cash with fake identification, and then disappear with your money without a trace.
  • If you’re offering a room to rent, scammers may get in contact with you saying they want to take the room (before coming to see it). They’ll send through a cashier’s cheque but this will be a fake, unbeknownst to you. The cheque will be made out for more than you were asking for and on the day you receive it you’ll be asked to return the excess amount because they “mistakenly” wrote it for more than was necessary. The scammers will call and email incessantly asking for you to return the money right away. You wire them the money having cashed the cheque, but three days later the bank get in contact to tell you the cheque was a fake, but you’ve already sent the money off.

EasyRoommate actively works to keep the site safe and free of scams like the ones that you so often get on sites like Gumtree. For more information on beating the scammers, you can visit their website.

EasyRoommate has been going for 10 years, operating in 27 countries around the world, becoming the No.1 flatshare and house share website in the UK. EasyRoommate is a portal for finding rooms to rent, as well as for finding a tenant if you have empty room you want to let out. Users are able to clearly specify who they are and who they’re looking for as a house mate. There are over 190,000 feature rooms to rent in the UK on, and the average site user is aged 21-30.