Many students have been scammed whilst trying to find a room on social media
By Aoife O Reilly
During the accommodation crisis, there has been a significant increase in the number of students who have been scammed in the process of looking for a place to rent.
Facebook pages have long been the norm for landlords to advertise and students to search for rooms, however, in recent months many UL students have been scammed on these platforms.
Final year student Stephen Dolan, like many others, has struggled to find accommodation and often visited student rental Facebook pages in the hopes of finding somewhere to stay.
He told Limerick Voice, “For most of third year, I had no other choice but to stay in hotels which was not sustainable as I was paying up to six hundred euro each week.
“I messaged various landlords who advertised rooms on student Facebook pages, and they all wanted me to pay a large sum of money before viewing a house. I attended one viewing and the room looked completely different to the photos I was shown.”
Students are now advised to proceed with caution when searching for accommodation.
Speaking to the Limerick Voice, UL Communities Officer, Laura Corcoran, said, “We are aware that unfortunately, online rental scams are more common than ever before. We always warn students that they should never hand over any money without viewing the property first.
“We are advising students to use secure platforms to find accommodation and to be cautious when using social media sites or groups. The chances are that if it sounds too good to be true, it often is.”
Find out more about accommodation at University of Limerick.