Scam prevention

Beware of rental scams

  • If you see a Main Street Renewal home on Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace, it is a scam.
  • If the price is significantly below comparable homes in the market, it is probably a scam.
  • If you are asked to take the key with you or place the key anywhere other than the lockbox, it is a scam.
  • If you are approved for a home without a credit and background check, it is a scam.
  • If you are asked to sign a paper lease, it is a scam.
  • If you are asked to transfer money via wire or prepaid gift cards; send a money order or digital gift card; or request funds through Zelle or a non-RentCafé payment app (such as Cash App, Venmo, PayPal, Square Cash, Apple Pay, and all others), it is a scam.

Report a scam

What to watch out for:

Regarding Third-Party Landlords:

  • Main Street Renewal does not use third-party landlords.
  • Main Street Renewal has property teams located in our local markets with additional support in Austin, TX.
  • Only Main Street Renewal agents and representatives will reach out to you directly.
  • If you are contacted by a third-party landlord claiming they were hired by Main Street Renewal, fired by Main Street Renewal, or are currently “out of the country,” it is a scam.

Regarding Applications:

  • You should only apply for a property directly through the Main Street Renewal website.
  • While we do require a Social Security Number (SSN) for background checks and applications, we will never ask for your personal information, including your SSN or bank account information, via phone or email during the home searching process.

Regarding Wiring Funds:

  • Main Street Renewal will never ask you to transfer money via wire or prepaid gift cards; send a money order or digital gift card; or request funds through Zelle or a non-RentCafé payment app (such as Cash App, Venmo, PayPal, Square Cash, Apple Pay, and all others) on your mobile device under any circumstances.
  • Main Street Renewal will never contact you via phone or email to make a payment outside of our Rent Café Applicant/Resident Portal.
  • We only accept payments through our RentCafé Applicant/Resident Portal or the RentCafé Resident app (a Yardi system) for both Apple and Google Pay.
  • If you ever encounter any payment issues within the RentCafé Applicant/Resident Portal, please contact Main Street Renewal immediately.
  • If someone does contact you regarding any of the above, we want to know about it. Please notify us immediately by clicking here.

Regarding Touring:

  • When touring a Main Street Renewal home, be sure to look for the Fraud Alert: Renters Beware materials throughout the home for additional information about how to identify a scam and what to do if you believe you are the victim of a scam.

What to do if you believe you are the subject of a rental scam:

  • If you experienced a rental scam, stop communicating with the scammer immediately.
  • The longer you stay in contact with a scammer, the greater the risk.
  • Document your correspondence and report the scam to your local law enforcement.
  • Please keep us informed as well by emailing the Main Street Renewal Scam Prevention team at scamprevention@msrenewal.com.
  • You can also visit our Contact Us page to notify your local Main Street Renewal branch about the scam.
  • If you experienced a rental scam, stop communicating with the scammer immediately. We can’t stress this part enough. The longer you stay in contact with a scammer, the greater the risk.

Main Street Renewal is a licensed real estate brokerage.

We are focused on renovating and leasing homes across the country. We are proudly based in Austin, TX and have branches in 30 cities with more coming soon.

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