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 Member Update
 5 WAYS TENANTS ARE SCAMMING LANDLORDS TODAY
BTy Uriel “Hootie” Sanchez
here are a lot of great benefits of being a landlord. With the great also comes the bad, however, and a downside of being a landlord in California is constantly having to keep up to date with ways tenants are scamming landlords. Luckily,
there are many tools and tips available to avoid becoming another statistic of the many tricks that tenants try to pull off on you. Professional tenant scammers come from all over the country and try many new tricks to see which one sticks. Here are the most popular ways tenants are scamming landlords today.
THE PHONY HUMAN RESOURCES (HR) DEPARTMENT SCAM
The rental application step when renting to a new tenant is where you are most likely to see how tenants try to scam landlords. Even the littlest lie is still a scam attempt. While there are many things to watch out for (which we will list at the end of this article), the “phony HR department” is a tactic that has been tried for years.
• How it Works. The tenant will write down current and past employer information which will satisfy your listings’ criteria. This
can include salary, job length etc. They will usually provide a name and phone number for an HR department to correlate their information. When you go to verify this information, you will most likely be calling a friend of theirs who is willing to talk nothing but wonderful things about your prospective tenant.
• How to Avoid Falling for This Scam. In almost all cases, you can find basic contact information for a legitimate business online. You can Google their place of employment and use that contact info to call and verify their provided information. If they have never heard of this person, give you different information or negative feedback, you can use this to make an accurate decision.
• Other ways of making sure you don’t fall for this scam (and another great way to verify income) is to ask for copies (and originals) of paycheck stubs, a Form W-2, tax return information and bank statements. When calling to an applicant’s employer to ask for references, make sure you ask to speak to their immediate boss if possible. This will give you a better character reference than an
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