- The loose nature of Ghana's rental sector makes it easy for people to scam others in the name of helping them find a place to rent
- There are a lot of people posing as agents or landlords looking for who will fall prey to their dubious schemes
- You do not have to fall victim to such rent scams by people when you know the right questions to ask and the appropriate thing to do before renting
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Ghana does not have a strictly regulated body that guides the membership and activities of real estate agents in the country. Anyone can stand up and decide to become a real estate agent on a whim without going through any laid down process or certification. This makes it difficult to determine whether people who claim to be agents are really so or whether they are out to scam you of your hard-earned money. This does not have to be the case.
The tips outlined below should serve as some guidelines and pointers that should help you secure a place without any fear.
Make Sure the Agent Has Access to the Property
It is very common for people to go for property viewing with agents in this part of the country. In fact, you are very unlikely to get a place if you do not secure the services of a real estate agent. However, make sure that this agent has access to the property they claim they are going to show you.
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Some unscrupulous people may show you a random house without taking you inside, claiming that the landlord may not be around. Yet, they will charge you a viewing fee for showing you the property.
Demand to Speak with the Landlord
It is not enough to be shown the property. Demand to speak with the landlord via phone or a video call if they are out of the country. Ask the landlord a few questions of your own to prove that they are who they claim to be.
Let the Landlord Put Everything in Writing
This is something that a lot of people overlook. When you finally decide on a place, the landlord must put everything the two of you agree on in writing. If one party breaches the agreement, it can always be referred to since it has been documented. There have been reports where landlords have gone back on their promises such as fixing certain amenities when the client has made payment.
Seek the Opinion of Other Real Estate Agents or Industry Experts
When an offer is too good to be true, it is most likely a scam. Many scammers post adverts of stunning properties with ridiculously low prices to attract people who will fall victims to their schemes. When you are not too sure of an offer, consult with other real estate agents, developers or consultants for a true reflection of the market price.
In an earlier article, Yen.com.gh wrote about 4 reasons it is important to secure the services of a real estate agent when renting. As stated in the article you just read, it is most likely that you will have to rent a place by employing the services of an agent.
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