Landlord asked for a vetting fee outside of Open Rent

Hello all.

I saw a flat in Hove today, and loved it. The landlord said I could start the vetting process by paying £100 into his bank account, and then we’d begin the process of me moving in etc.

But I see that Open Rent begins this process with a £200 down secured payment, and the vetting fee is supposed to be £20.

Is this some scam?

If you are renting through OR’s ‘Rent Now’, then Yes it is a scam.

Hi Warren,

You should be cautious when considering handing over money to a landlord directly - Rent Now offers you maximum protection, don’t worry!

Some landlords who use us may just want to advertise their property. They could, for instance, have their own contract they want to use, which means our Rent Now service doesn’t suit their needs.

It’s no problem if a tenancy proceeds outside of Rent Now, though where one does, we always recommend taking proof of identity and a clear written agreement of how money will be treated.

Generally speaking though, we never recommend a tenant hands over funds to a private individual - that’s what we’re here for, to offer peace of mind to all involved by handling the funds and tenancy creation.

If this £100 isn’t a holding deposit and is in fact a fee this landlord has charged, this isn’t permitted. Please email us ( with further details if the landlord is attempting this. As you say, the only cost to tenants using us is £20 per reference.

Any questions about Rent Now, do just let me know.


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