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Catfished After Swiping Right on a Rental Unit?


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It sucks being catfished — in dating and renting a home. You find what seems like your perfect match on a property portal: a roomy 2-bedroom unit that’s fully furnished with eclectic furniture, gorgeous carpets, and state-of-the-art appliances. And then it turns out to be a cramped dual-key unit with chairs stolen from the coffee shop downstairs. It does make taking precious time to view properties a potentially horrible experience.

While this is hard to avoid fully, it helps when you come prepared for the units that are less obvious on the surface. You may be surprised that it looks like how it was presented in the photos, but you’d want to spot more than just dirt swept under the carpet. You’d want to find any malice hiding in the nooks and crannies,

So here are some useful tips you can use when viewing a unit that’ll make you look like you do this day in and day out.

Schedule your viewing on the weekend and arrive 30 minutes early.

This is the time for you to do some surveying. Listen for any noise that may become aggravating when you’re finally living in the unit, like if it’s facing the playground and you can hear the high-pitched squeals of little kids chasing each other or the shouts of rowdy teens playing soccer on the field at all hours of the day.

You should also look out for the feel of the breeze, or lack thereof, and have a walk around the neighbourhood. Many listings would state that it’s only minutes away from the MRT, and this is the time for you to verify that. Today, Google maps can do a lot of the legwork in figuring this out, but it’s always best to find your own pace and see how long you take to reach certain landmarks in the area.

Catfished renting home image

Once you’re inside, take your time.

It can be fishy whenever the landlord’s agents or the landlord themselves try and rush you when conducting your viewing. Print out a checklist or have it ready on a tablet when you start your viewing.

Here are some quick tips (but do ask for permission before you proceed):

1. Switch all the lights on and off (both to check if they’re in working condition and how much natural light there is)

2. Open the windows (feel if there’s a breeze and listen to how sound-proof they are)

3. Look for all the electrical outlets (you want ample in key areas especially in areas you may set up a working area or additional appliances)

4. Ask questions!

a.  How old are the renovations?

b.  How many previous tenants stayed here and for how long?

c.  Is the landlord planning to sell the place in the future?

d.  Who are your potential neighbours?

Also, you should prepare a Letter Of Intent and 1 or 2 month’s rent for a Good Faith Deposit (this is different to a security deposit) to “chope” your unit so you can start the negotiation process while fending off other potential tenants.

If you need a guide on how to get started on renting a home, click here. If you’re already looking, we recommend trying out our MATCH service launched earlier this year.

Let Ohmyhome’s smart data-matching technology MATCH you with the right home, according to your specific needs. Submit your preferences to us and our algorithm will filter all our available listings based on those, and we’ll WhatsApp them to you once we find a match. We’ll also send you relevant content that you can use for your research and inform your home buying decision, so you no longer have to spend hours searching online for the information that you need. Because at Ohmyhome, we’re always by your side, always on your side.

Secure an appointment with any of our Super Agents by dropping us a message in the chatbox at the bottom, right-hand corner of the screen or via any of the contact options below.

Print out our Viewing Checklist or have it ready on a tablet when you start your viewing!

Feel free to download it for your personal usage.

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