Help Desk

 Avoiding Vacation Rental Scams

 
Searching for a Vacation Rental can be quite exciting given the vast options offered on Kijiji. That being said, we do have some suggestions in order to stay safe while searching this category;
 
If it looks too good to be true - it probably is.
 
  • Look up the reasonable price range for this type of property in the same area. If the price is too good to be true, be extra cautious.
 
Do your homework.
 
  • Ask the user to provide you with ownership documents. The name provided on the lease should match the name on public property records.
  • Look up the property address and conduct a ‘Street View’ to ensure that the property exists and appears the same as in the images.
 
It’s in the details.
 
  • Ask for additional images. The true owner of this property will be able to provide you with images that are not necessarily included in the ad. Alternatively, ask the owner to contact you via video-conferencing (using Skype, Facetime, etc). This way you will be able to view the property and verify ownership.
  • Fraudulent users often prefer to use cash-transfers such as Money Gram or Western Union. We recommend that you use VISA, Master Card or American Express as they will help recover any payments in the case of loss. 

If you do choose to go with one of these cash-transfer sites, we highly recommend that you consider these additional tips:
    • Western Union will not send an invoice via email. Do not send funds or click any link from a supposed Western Union invoice.
    • If you receive an invoice, please contact the institution and ask if an invoice has been sent to your account. They will then be able to validate any transaction.