Rental scam? 2 agents?

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Andrew1981
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Rental scam? 2 agents?

Post by Andrew1981 » Sun, 27 Jul 2014 9:49 pm

Hey, long time lurker first time poster. :)

I'm trying to work out if this is a scam or not, looked at an apartment today (HDB) and there's two agents.

The first is representing the owner.

The second is, according to him, finding the apartment for me... Despite the fact the apartment had already being found since I inquired about the specific apartment posted on iproperty.

The second agent wants me to pay an agent fee for finding the apartment. The excuse they give is that by having two agents there is no conflict of interest between the two parties.

I did not contact the agent to go out of his way to find me an apartment that suited my needs, I asked about a specific listing, so I don't see why I should pay a fee for something he did not find me.

Is this a scam or something?

Thanks.

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x9200
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Post by x9200 » Sun, 27 Jul 2014 10:06 pm

Scam. Tell the 2nd agent to get lost or you will report him/her to CEA - you don't need any agent to represent you.

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rajagainstthemachine
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Post by rajagainstthemachine » Sun, 27 Jul 2014 10:36 pm

Scam - do not pay him any money!
To get there early is on time and showing up on time is late

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Post by Andrew1981 » Sun, 27 Jul 2014 10:47 pm

Hah, ok well that sorts that out! Messaged him back said I'm not prepared to pay any 'agent fee'.

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Post by Brah » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 9:39 am

Andrew1981 wrote:Hah, ok well that sorts that out! Messaged him back said I'm not prepared to pay any 'agent fee'.
You really ought to do more than that an out this guy because he will probably do it again unless he gets whacked.

I had quite a few agents in my time here, some came across as very nice, but even some of them pulled some subtle moves that were underhanded.

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Post by nakatago » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 9:43 am

Brah wrote:
Andrew1981 wrote:Hah, ok well that sorts that out! Messaged him back said I'm not prepared to pay any 'agent fee'.
You really ought to do more than that an out this guy because he will probably do it again unless he gets whacked.

I had quite a few agents in my time here, some came across as very nice, but even some of them pulled some subtle moves that were underhanded.
+1
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Post by JR8 » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 11:24 am

Yes, you really should report it, it sounds nothing short of attempted fraud.

I'd e-mail his/her agency, and ask them to try and justify what happened, saying something like - 'as I considering whether to report this matter to the NEAE'.

If any reply received is unsatisfactory, then forward that 'Q+A' directly to the NAEA.

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sundaymorningstaple
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Post by sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 11:47 am

You got me on that one JR8. What is NAEA? The governing body here is CEA I thought. That's a new acronym for me. :???:
SOME PEOPLE TRY TO TURN BACK THEIR ODOMETERS. NOT ME. I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW WHY I LOOK THIS WAY. I'VE TRAVELED A LONG WAY, AND SOME OF THE ROADS WEREN'T PAVED. ~ Will Rogers

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Post by Wd40 » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 1:19 pm

Its not a scam but a very common practice. I have come across several such cases. Sometimes husband, wife team up or friends team up so that they can take the agent fee from the tenant as well as the owner.

It depends on demand and supply. If you refuse to pay the agent fee, they will look for another tenant and from my experience in the low end of the HDB rentals(~2k) its nearly impossible to get away from paying the agent fee, unless you are okay to rent anywhere and have no constraints.

Since this is very widespread, I doubt if it is illegal. It may be unethical, but I guess they have workarounds. Most people on this forum rent condos or just rooms in HDB/condo, so they wont even know it or have come across it.

Do us a favour, now that you have decided to come out of your lurking mode and asked a question. When you manage to find a house, update us whether you paid the agent fee or not.
Last edited by Wd40 on Mon, 28 Jul 2014 1:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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sundaymorningstaple
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Post by sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 1:27 pm

It's illegal. Full Stop.
SOME PEOPLE TRY TO TURN BACK THEIR ODOMETERS. NOT ME. I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW WHY I LOOK THIS WAY. I'VE TRAVELED A LONG WAY, AND SOME OF THE ROADS WEREN'T PAVED. ~ Will Rogers

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Post by Max Headroom » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 1:54 pm

I think what WD40 is trying to say is that it's only illegal if you get caught.

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Post by the lynx » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 1:56 pm

Wd40 wrote:Its not a scam but a very common practice. I have come across several such cases. Sometimes husband, wife team up or friends team up so that they can take the agent fee from the tenant as well as the owner.

It depends on demand and supply. If you refuse to pay the agent fee, they will look for another tenant and from my experience in the low end of the HDB rentals(~2k) its nearly impossible to get away from paying the agent fee, unless you are okay to rent anywhere and have no constraints.

Since this is very widespread, I doubt if it is illegal. It may be unethical, but I guess they have workarounds. Most people on this forum rent condos or just rooms in HDB/condo, so they wont even know it or have come across it.

Do us a favour, now that you have decided to come out of your lurking mode and asked a question. When you manage to find a house, update us whether you paid the agent fee or not.
What the heck?

It is illegal! Whatever it is, it is still wrong. I'm very surprised you seemed to think that it is normal despite of your many years dealing with agents. Just like how some people borrow someone else's foreign maid to clean their houses once a week. Common? Kind of. Illegal? You can sure bet your candy that it is.

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Post by Wd40 » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 2:08 pm

the lynx wrote:
Wd40 wrote:Its not a scam but a very common practice. I have come across several such cases. Sometimes husband, wife team up or friends team up so that they can take the agent fee from the tenant as well as the owner.

It depends on demand and supply. If you refuse to pay the agent fee, they will look for another tenant and from my experience in the low end of the HDB rentals(~2k) its nearly impossible to get away from paying the agent fee, unless you are okay to rent anywhere and have no constraints.

Since this is very widespread, I doubt if it is illegal. It may be unethical, but I guess they have workarounds. Most people on this forum rent condos or just rooms in HDB/condo, so they wont even know it or have come across it.

Do us a favour, now that you have decided to come out of your lurking mode and asked a question. When you manage to find a house, update us whether you paid the agent fee or not.
What the heck?

It is illegal! Whatever it is, it is still wrong. I'm very surprised you seemed to think that it is normal despite of your many years dealing with agents. Just like how some people borrow someone else's foreign maid to clean their houses once a week. Common? Kind of. Illegal? You can sure bet your candy that it is.
I don't understand why you are getting angry at me? I am saying its widespread and common. I don't know what you mean by "normal"

Borrowing else's maid is out and out illegal, you can go and complain and all parties will be caught, there is no way to hide.

But in this case, the law says one agent cannot take fee from both the landlord and the tenant and so the agents team up and have 2 people, one representing the tenant and another the landlord, to beat the law.

This is Singapore, mind you. Its the last place on earth where people will do illegal stuff, openly. Okay, if you say its illegal, fine! Its illegal!

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sundaymorningstaple
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Post by sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 2:14 pm

Wd40

This board dispenses the rules as best we can. We do not dispense ways around the rules. That is not what this board is about and you've been here long enough to know that.
SOME PEOPLE TRY TO TURN BACK THEIR ODOMETERS. NOT ME. I WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW WHY I LOOK THIS WAY. I'VE TRAVELED A LONG WAY, AND SOME OF THE ROADS WEREN'T PAVED. ~ Will Rogers

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Post by Wd40 » Mon, 28 Jul 2014 2:36 pm

Yes Chief, got it!

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