The Better Business Bureau warns eviction scams are on the rise. The original eviction moratorium expired on July 31, 2021. However, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a new eviction moratorium pausing eviction through October 3, 2021. The BBB warns people should be on the lookout for eviction scams as the end of the moratorium approaches. Specifically, they say to be on the lookout for scammers that offer loans, credit repair services, or promote government programs.
How the Eviction Scams Work
Scammers look for those who are in dire financial straights, hoping to trick them out of money they do not have. For example, the BBB’s Scam Tracker received numerous reports of fake pandemic relief grants or government programs. These programs allegedly provide money to those impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
First, scammers will reach out saying you have qualified for a grant or assistance program.
Second, the scammer will ask you to pay a processing or delivery fee to get the money.
Of course, if you pay this fee, you’ve just given your information and money to a con artist
How to Protect Yourself
As more reports of eviction scams come into the tracker, the BBB warns this scenario could happen to more people as early October approaches. With this in mind, the BBB offers several ways you can protect yourself and your loved ones.
First, you should double check any government program before you sign up.
Second, the BBB urges people to be wary of sudden calls, emails, or texts claiming to be from the government.
Third, if something seems suspicious reach out to the agency directly.
Fourth, you should never pay any money for free government grants or programs.
Next, another big sign something isn’t right is if you are asked to provide an advanced fee.
Finally, a sure sign of an eviction scam is if you are offered a guarantee in advance. Also, be on the lookout for other unusual payment methods.
If you suspect an eviction scam you can report it via the Scam Tracker, or you can call the BBB. Navigate Affordable Housing Partners continues to offer Free Rental Assistance Resources to those struggling financially through the pandemic.