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To wonder if this is a scam?

(46 Posts)
Attethersend43 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:11:41

Young couple want to rent my (nice, large) house. (I say that not to stealth boast but because it seems pretty big for just the two of them and isn't that cheap.) Have offered to pay large proportion of the rent in advance. Nice enough couple but bloke v chatty, big proclamations about working in certain celeb industry.

Estate agent also told me that they had won huge amounts on poker...?! But seemed to not be able to verify this...

Call me an old cynic but something about all this is not ringing true! Obviously will sort credit checks and referencing. They want to move in early next week too.

Could this be a scam and if so what? I feel awful thinking like this and obviously gave been perfectly polite to their faces but have been burnt quite a lot as a naive and trusting LL!

JaniceBattersby Tue 16-Aug-16 20:14:19

Have you googled them? Looked on their FBs? If they tally up then I wouldn't be worried. If it looks like they're bullshitting about their lifestyle I'd be worried they couldn't afford the rent.

JustMarriedBecca Tue 16-Aug-16 20:17:31

Maybe they work from home (if they are professional poker players) and need the extra space hence the bigger house? My friend's wife makes 80k a year as a professional poker player and look at Victoria Cohen Mitchell.

ThatsWotSheSaid Tue 16-Aug-16 20:19:34

There is a scam where people rent a really nice big house. Then they claim to be the owners and rent out the other rooms. They take deposits from many people telling them all a move in date in the future. When 100 people show up on the move in date they are long gone with all the deposits.

Attethersend43 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:25:09

Interesting ThatsWot!

I agree JustMarried but arm it sounds like bullshit...

Attethersend43 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:25:55


WitteryTwittery Tue 16-Aug-16 20:27:09

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

19lottie82 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:27:32

Thatswot........ True, but I don't think this would be the case if the rental is through a letting agency, as the OP has mentioned.

19lottie82 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:30:51

Sorry, ignore me wot I read the posts wrong!

OP, if you're employing a rental agency then they should be doing all sorts of checks to make sure that any prospective tenants can afford the property.

If tenants have cash but can't prove a regular income then paying 6 months rent up front is often suggested as an alternative.

I wouldn't worry too much about it "being a scam", however I own a BTL myself and certainly wouldn't let my asset out to anyone I hadn't met myself, agency or no agency.

19lottie82 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:32:02

If you have met them, but don't have a good feeling, then unless you're desperate to get it rented out...... Listen to what you're guys telling you!

ThroughThickAndThin01 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:32:45

It could be a way of using their poker money effectively, paying rent up front would be sensible.

Make sure the references are watertight.

KC225 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:34:32

Google respectable tenants turned my house into a cannabis farm

AgentProvocateur Tue 16-Aug-16 20:37:19

They're maybe going to sell tickets to sex parties in your house.

LIZS Tue 16-Aug-16 20:41:45

My first thought was drugs or parties (Headley?) .

greathat Tue 16-Aug-16 20:46:04

Maybe they're just rich....

Dontyoulovecalpol Tue 16-Aug-16 20:47:03

Cannabis farm

YouAreMyRain Tue 16-Aug-16 20:49:52

Cannabis farm. They often pay rent in advance to avoid being too traceable and to limit contact with the owner/ agents.

The "couple" will hand over the keys and never set foot in your house.

If they've got lots of money, why aren't they buying somewhere?

Attethersend43 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:53:46

Apparently they intend to build a house from scratch but this will take a while so want to rent in meantime.

Attethersend43 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:54:38

I thought cannabis farm. I do generally ask for regular inspections in contract. How often?

ManonLescaut Tue 16-Aug-16 20:54:46

A good friend of mine's father was a professional poker player. He funded a large house in Hampstead and two children at independent school. If you're good you can make a lot of money at it.

Frogslegs24 Tue 16-Aug-16 20:54:55

Rather than getting them to pay the rent in advance get them to put it into the deposit so that you have say 6 months deposit. If they pay in advance you might run into problems when the next lot of rent is due. At least this way you have a bit more time to serve them notice when they stop paying rent.

Dontyoulovecalpol Tue 16-Aug-16 20:57:21

You can't use the deposit for rent though
You can't enforce inspections either

I would just rent to someone else

unlucky83 Tue 16-Aug-16 21:02:54

Wasn't (isn't) there some scam where they sell the house? If it doesn't have a mortgage on it they can they transfer the title or something then sell it. (Especially if you live far away) I'm sure some big agency (Foxtons?) was involved in one. Even if they just get the deposit it is a big sum... I think you don't lose out - apart from hassle - it is the buyers who get stung.
Or maybe depending on area they can sublet rooms?
I would want it checked out properly....if you are at all suspicious.

Esspee Tue 16-Aug-16 21:08:27

Paying rent in advance can be because they have a poor credit rating, and may not even have a bank account. I have experienced both. Make sure their references are genuine. I like Frogslegs suggestion and intend to do that in similar circumstances in the future. Thanks FL.

grumpysquash3 Tue 16-Aug-16 21:09:02

You could simply turn them down and rent it out to someone else.

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