A leading Knightsbridge based estate agents is urging landlords to be on their guard against a surge of sub-letting scams.
Patterson Bowe has offered advice to letting agents and tenants alike, with the intention of helping them avoid such problems.
Many landlords have recently approached Patterson Bowe’s lettings team in search of new tenants, having realised that their properties had been sub-letted illegally, without their knowledge or consent.
As such, the agent is calling on all landlords to carry out thorough diligence checks on all tenants, before signing any contracts.
‘An undersupply and increased demand in the current market has left room for certain tenants to bend the rules where they can,’ said Stuart Patterson, owner and managing director of Patterson Bowe. ‘We have been contacted by both landlords and tenants looking for advice because they have fallen victim to these scams, particularly illegally sub-letting property throughout Prime Central London. Often these are short term tenants who are here from overseas and searching online for temporary accommodation without appropriate knowledge or advice,’ he added.
Patterson-Bowe warns against sub-letting scams
Alistair Bowe went on to add that, ‘a quality letting agent will not only have an awareness of these kind of practices, but will also be to provide sound advice to clients on how to avoid them.’ He said that,’ our years of experience have taught us that relying on computerised reference checks alone is not enough to ensure the quality and reliability of tenants. Once we have conducted the usual online checks we also meet each tenant in person to retain in depth background information from them and build a detailed and reliable profile for our clients.’