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Apartments with booking.com

AUSTRALIA
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107 posts
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Apartments with booking.com

I have read the info on apartments being illegal but can see several apartments that would be ideal through the agent booking.com. As this is a legitimate company and has good reviews does that mean these apartments are legal? We are looking for Dec 2013 so just researching at this stage.

Hove, United Kingdom
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1. Re: Apartments with booking.com

Unfortunately not, most of these 3rd party sites do not vet the apartments they list, nor do they check the local laws or ordnances regarding vacation rentals,so any private apartments listed are likely to be illegal.

If you have the addresses of these apartments you can check them on the NYC department of buildings website, or post them here and someone will check for you.

The apartment styles hotels such as Radio City apartments, the Beacon and Affinia properties among others are legal.

Newcastle
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2. Re: Apartments with booking.com

We are also looking at apartments in various buildings and have read about some being illegal. We used Homeaway.com to find one in Midtown that is good for us. We have made contact with the owner who is now sending us booking forms. We find it unusual that after paying our initial deposit of 20% they want the full amount paid in full 30 days prior to arriving. We'd like to see the apartment prior to parting with the cash. Does anyone know if this is the norm? We are planning our trip in Sept 2013

Quebec
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for Mont Tremblant
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3. Re: Apartments with booking.com

Home away also does not check if the apartments listed are legal or not. Find a hotel, that way you know you have a place to stay.

London, United...
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for Wakefield
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4. Re: Apartments with booking.com

SparkeyNewcastle - As you're renting a potential illegal apartment, then normal rules don't apply. Whether they own the place, rent the place or not, especially in Midtown, there are hardly any places that will fit in the laws.

Asking for money up front is normal, bait and switch is normal, arriving and it looking nothing like on the photos is normal.

No one is vetting these places, making sure they adhere to fire codes etc. You run the risk of being evicted during your stay, or finding that the place is locked down and you have no access.

I'd ask for your deposit back, and get a hotel.

M

New York NY
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for New York City
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5. Re: Apartments with booking.com

Run away fast. Do not send any money.

This is exactly how so many Brits end up in NYC with no place to stay when they realize their deposit / full payment was stolen - it was all a scam.

Others arrive and find out they're staying in a building that is totally under construction and it isn't even legal for there to be occupants in the building but a shady landlord will sneak you in for a few hundred dollars.

Don't do it. You will most likely be very sorry if you do.

Newcastle
3 posts
1 review
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6. Re: Apartments with booking.com

Thanks for the advice - so much to learn!!! Always try to see the good in people but unfortunately, there's always a bad apple :(

New York NY
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for New York City
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7. Re: Apartments with booking.com

Believe it or not, a lot of these scams are being run by people who aren't even in New York City - they can be anywhere in the world with internet access.

People pull pictures from real-estate agents websites and use them.

People falsely assume they're wiring money to New York. The visitors then arrive and show up at some fancy building where the doorman tells them that there is no such apartment and to please leave the premises. Many doormen have their stories about tourists from around the world showing up and breaking down in tears and blaming the doorman.

It is quite sad. We've had stories from people in Australia - people that flown all the way to NYC from Australia for two weeks in a beautiful apartment - all paid for. No apartment exists and they certainly don't have the money for two weeks in a hotel after paying for two weeks in an apartment. Not everybody can afford to pay twice. Once you've just been ripped off of that much money, how much do you really want to stay and enjoy NYC anyway - so they return to the airport and go home having had the worst experience of their entire lives.

Don't let this happen to you.

Mineola, New York
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8. Re: Apartments with booking.com

While the apartments listed may or may not be a scam and are in all probablility at the very least illegal, asking for full payment before you arrive is not out of the norm for a regular vacation rental. Unlike a hotel, folks that rent their house for a vacation rental are out that week's rental if you change your mind just before you get there. At our Jersey Shore vacation rental we ask for full payment 6 weeks before your rental starts, so I'd be more wary of a vacation rental that didn't ask for full payment before your rental starts. A bigger tip off of a scam is if they request that you wire payment to them. Seems that just about every scam you read about uses money wired to an "owner" while very few legit vacation rentals get paid this way!

Newcastle
3 posts
1 review
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9. Re: Apartments with booking.com

Thanks Frank3. The vacation rental that we're looking at in NY has quite a few very positive comments (which is what attracted us in the first place), it is already booked for many weeks in 2013 with several new bookings recently added .It appears from the information provided on the advertisers page that this apartment has been in operation for 2012 only so they are just starting out.

The owners have been quick to respond to emails and they have even provided maps and other relevant information. We have been emailed a one page "Booking Agreement" which advises of the refund if cancellation occurs along with other relevant information.

I guess I could try to find out the phone number for the building concierge and speak to them directly to see if holiday rentals (under one month) are taking place but if this is illegal, I don't want to get the owners into strife....

Such a quandry??? Thanks to everyone who has posted a reply. Cheers

Quebec
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for Mont Tremblant
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10. Re: Apartments with booking.com

Renting in NJ is not the same as NYC. Different place, different laws. Rentals for less than 30 days are mostly illegal, even if they actually exist.