The security deposit issue comes up again this week with a question for veteran landlord, property manager and real estate investor Hank Rossi.

Dear Landlord Hank:

I am in the process of talking to a homeowner about a property in California I wish to rent.

I have passed application process and want to see the inside of the property, but I was informed that I cannot until I send the deposit to him, at which time I will receive the keys etc.

I want to make sure my request is to a legit owner. Any advice?

– Jonathan


Hi Jonathan,

SCAM-forget about this property because you are dealing with a scammer.

A legitimate owner is not going to give you keys until you’ve passed application process (which you did), paid rent and signed a lease.

If you pay a deposit and receive actual keys to the property you want, why couldn’t you just move in and not pay any rent?

Don’t apply without looking at a property, as you are wasting your funds, and don’t give this guy a penny.

Good luck.

Hank Rossi

In case you missed our recent post on security deposit issues, here it is:

A Tale of Woe Regarding Handing a Security Deposit

Each week I answer questions from landlords and property managers across the country in my “Dear Landlord Hank” blog in the digital magazine Rent Resources by the American Rental Property Owners and Landlord Association.

Got A Landlord Question? Fill Out The Form Below And Landlord Hank Will Get Back To You

Other recent Dear Landlord Hank posts you may have missed:

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If A Rental Has Been Burglarized Do We Have To Put Up Security Cameras?

 Where Do You Draw The Line On Normal Wear And Tear?

Dear Landlord Hank: Do You Conduct Rental Inspections? How Often?

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Dear Landlord Hank: Should I Give A Tenant More Time To Pay?

Dear Landlord Hank: Tenant’s Sewer Line Clogged With Tree Roots

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Dear Landlord Hank: Service Dog Ruined Backyard In My Rental Now What?

Tenant cannot pay rent

Landlord Hank at work on one of his properties