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Getting interest in a flat from Hong Kongers... is it a scam?

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Author Topic: Getting interest in a flat from Hong Kongers... is it a scam?  (Read 108 times)
Newbie
Posts: 2

10 kinds of people, those who understand binary...

« on: October 15, 2021, 02:42:10 PM »

In the world of 'if it seems too good to be true, it probably is' here.

Had a flat up for a new tenancy for a few weeks, so far had two enquiries from people trying to leave
HK. One viewed (five viewers at the same time - family of three and two friends) and didn't follow through.

Second one wants to pay full rent (plus services and tax) to hold the flat for 3/4 months then pay a year in
advance because they can't possibly pass referencing (no jobs, foreign nationals, on HK exit visas etc.).

Looks too good, doesn't it?
Global Moderator
Hero Member
Posts: 4330

Abuse Officer

« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2021, 04:49:53 PM »

Money in the bank is money in the bank. Your obligations are effectively limited to doing Right to Rent checks... what else can you be expected to do?

I let to Chinese students each year.. they always pay in-full and up-front. They have to for the reasons you cite. They have no choice. I've never had anyone doing a holding pattern thing, tho... again, if money is in your bank, do you still think it's suspicious? It seems like low-risk to you... but one caveat I'd have is that it is made explicitly clear to them that the property is for their residence... not just anyone who might be passing through or by. The apartment I let is in a building fashionable with foreign students... and there was a time when it was well-known that 2 bedroom apartments could easily have 4 people in them... and they weren't sharing a bed for happy times.

As always, just be careful... but the usual risk of having someone in your place not paying rent seems to be avoided here.
Hero Member
Posts: 658

I like property

« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2021, 04:54:48 PM »

The most common risk to long time paying upfront is cannabis grow. If you are happy with the frequency of your inspection to ensure that's not the case to mitigate the risk, you should be okay.

The only problem here is your insurance with the length of it being unoccupied.

Having said that, 3/4 months holding pattern is a bit odd......
Global Moderator
Hero Member
Posts: 1382

I like property

« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2021, 05:05:05 PM »

I have had Chinese students years ago from the mainland,paid upfront.They went straight back after graduating though,and their government took responsibility for any debts they incurred. so the matter of how they would pay in the future did not arise. There is certainly the possibility that the flat could be turned into an unofficial HMO. Unless it's a big flat,the five people you mentioned sounds like a lot to me. I don't like the thought of having no checks or references.Personally,I would be wary,attractive though the money sounds. 
Newbie
Posts: 2

10 kinds of people, those who understand binary...

« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2021, 11:26:56 AM »

Thank you all for your input.

Paid holding rent this morning, in full, no deductions including services and council tax.
Real money, no requests to pay for a shipping container or send their car... B-)

Holding breath a little...
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