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Is there any way of finding out who owns the property offering a flat for rent ?

I am looking for a flat to rent in London and have been on Gumtree, I received an e-mail from someone offering me a lovely flat ...the only problem is she's saying she lives in Birmingham and doesn't want to waste her time travelling to London unnecessarily. My dilemma is she asked me to get a western union transfer set up and that once view property if liked could sign contract after getting money out. I think it sounds dodgy but she could be telling truth, I'm sure there is a way to find out owner of said flat in London ???? Thank you

Asked on Nov 23 2010, Renting in London | Report content

Answers (6)

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  • I think you are right to be wary and I would not set up the transfer. You can find out who owns a flat using the Land Registry Website for a fee of £4.00. The best advice I can offer is to stick to ARLA registered agents, which I am sure there are a few in your area.

    Answered on Nov 23 2010, Report content
  • All western union transactions on Gumtree are a scam, so please do not enter in to anything with this woman. You only pay money on the day of completion and when you have the keys in sight. For future reference if you know the full address and postcode you can find out who owns the property from The Land registry.

    Answered on Nov 24 2010, Report content
  • This is a scam that has been going on for some time now, there is another identical one at the moment from a lady who says she is a doctor living in Ireland and you have to pay 1 month's rent via Western Union to your best friend/brother/sister etc and email the scanned recipt to her then she will arrange to come over to London to show you the flat knowing she is not wasting her time!! It is a con. Never ever part with any money unless you are sure that the person you are dealing with is reputable. Another one I have heard of recently is a landlord who meets his client at the property, takes 1 month's rents and gives him a set of keys but tells him he cannot move in until next weekend, the client tries to move in the following weekend only to find that the keys do not fit and there was someone living there who knew nothing about it. You are better off dealing with an agent who has an office that you can meet them at so you know you are dealing with real people.

    Answered on Nov 24 2010, Report content
  • Under no circumstance set up the transfer, it sounds like an increasingly common scam. The other answers are right about land registry so you can verify, maybe more a case of trading standards!

    Answered on Nov 24 2010, Report content
  • Hi there, I do not think that you should proceed with the flat. A friend of mine was asked to transfer £300 through Western Union before even viewing the property. Once this was done the so called Landlord was no longer contactable and she lost the entire amount. You can find out the owner of any property by logging into the website and it costs £4.00 to get this information. If in doubt, use a reputable Lettings Agent who will have carried out all the relevant safety checks on your behalf.

    Answered on Dec 14 2010, Report content
  • It sounds like a scam, check their ISP address to evaluate where did the email come from. r Green Live

    Answered on Apr 1 2011, Report content

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