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How to Spot Fake Landlord References

Most landlords that are looking for new tenants are always asking for reference letters and/or some level of reference information, which is an essential part of the tenant screening process. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for prospective tenants in Canada and elsewhere to provide fake landlord references.  The majority of prospective renters are honest, unfortunately, there are some “bad apples” out there.

Regrettably, those who provide fake references don’t do it for good reasons. They often aim to conceal problems including late payments, bankruptcies, anti-social behaviour, and damage to the rental property or eviction. It is in the landlord’s best interests to identify these troublesome tenants before it is too late.

Fake landlord references can be hard to identify, especially if they are done by professional scammers who do it as a service. Still, it is possible by personally checking the references and paying close attention to what they say while double-checking the contact information, property or personal tax information, and employment records.

Here are several practical tips from Emerald Management & Realty Ltd. on how to be on the lookout for fake landlord references every time when sourcing a new tenant.

1.Personally Call the References

Personally calling the references is one of the best ways to check if they are real, and this can be done in a number of ways. One of the best possible approaches is to call as a tenant inquiring about how long they’ve been a landlord or renting out properties instead, which might have been expected. If a reference is a fake, they can be taken off guard, stumble when answering, or unexpectedly hang up the phone.

When the reference is a fake, they might be prepared for such a check and provide applicable information. Another alternative is to ask for back up information relating to employment and documentation from their employer. 

2.Check Tax Records

If you are dealing with a private landlord, another way to verify whether the landlord’s reference is real is to check the owner’s name in the property tax records. If the property owner’s name matches that in the reference, this check is complete.

However, if the name is different, it is not yet a signal that the reference is a fake. The previous landlord could have sold the property, or the reference could be given by a property manager.

If the names in the reference and property tax records don’t match, ask the person mentioned in a reference letter whether they own the property. If they confirm that the property is sold, ask the name of the next owner. If they don’t remember or don’t provide a clear answer, there is a high chance it is a fake.

3.Analyze the Reference Responses

When speaking to a landlord, it is advisable to ask specific questions about the rent and the rental property that only a landlord might know. For example: if the parking is included, if the rent includes amenities such as a pool, terrace, or clubhouse, and whether the tenant had a pet. If they cannot give an answer or provide vague responses, it can raise a red flag.

Meanwhile, too enthusiastic responses can be just as suspicious as vague ones since fake landlords, friends, and relatives often overdo it. If they provide too much information when not asked or if the responses are too personal, it can be a sign that the reference is a fake.

Get Help from Professional Property Managers

Although landlords can often identify troublesome tenants by spotting fake landlord references, the mistakes can be costly and time-consuming. At the same time, turning down a tenant for the wrong reason can result in a lawsuit due to non-compliance with the Fair Housing Act.

Another alternative is to get help from expert property managers who have access to various professional resources and are well-versed in due diligence on prospective tenants. To find out about Emerald Management & Realty Ltd.’s services to assist landlords and our effective and proven processes provided to move swiftly through tenant credit checks, call us at 403-237-8600 or contact us today.

SOHO ONE Apartments for Rent Calgary



738 – 14 Street SW, Calgary, AB

Proudly managed by Emerald Management & Realty Ltd.

SOHO ONE is conveniently located in one of Calgary’s most dynamic and amenity-rich neighbourhoods, in the community of Beltline. Beltline is  bounded on the south by 17th Avenue, on the west by 14th Street West and on the east by the Elbow River.  

Immediately south of Downtown Calgary, SOHO ONE is just 2 blocks from Safeway, parks, and the vibrant 17th Ave SW.   From medical care to transit, and fine dining to boutique shopping, everything you might need is within a short walking distance.  For good reason, the community has earned its reputation of being one of Calgary’s prime lifestyle locations for eclectic night-life, restaurants and urban culture.

Proudly management by Emerald Management & Realty Ltd., SOHO ONE features spacious suites, galley kitchens and laminate flooring.  The lighting from the large windows showcases ever changing views of the seasons experienced in Calgary. Balconies are expansive and perfect for summer urban patio living!

Schedule a Tour TODAY!

… Don’t forget to ask about incentives !!!

SOHO ONE is currently offering desirable incentives to assist with your monthly budget planning!  Check out Emerald Management & Realty Ltd.’s current offering to learn more and see how the net incentive positively impacts your move into your next rental home!

  • 1 bedrooms starting at $893/month (net incentives)
  • 2 bedrooms starting at $1030/month (net incentives)
  • Highly coveted inner-city parking is available for $75 extra per month
  • Cats are negotiable with a $300 non-refundable pet deposit

Call our friendly leasing agents at 403-237-8600 to schedule a tour or call our on-site resident manager today at 403-909-8119!  Our team at Emerald Management & Realty Ltd. looks forward to answering your questions and touring you through your next rental home located in Calgary, AB at SOHO ONE Apartments.

Summary of features at SOHO ONE Apartment:

  • Secure entry controlled by FOB card access
  • Upgraded 1 & 2 bedroom suites
  • In-suite storage PLUS additional storage locker space available (on request)
  • Heat & water included
  • Large windows that feature outstanding inner city views
  • Great walkability
  • Full time Resident Manager
  • Package delivery lockers
  • Coin-less laundry
  • Concrete building
  • Elevator
  • Parking available at $75/month
  • Cats negotiable on approval and payment of $300 non-refundable pet deposit.

* Pricing and availability are subject to change. 

INTERESTED? Contact our team at Emerald Management & Realty Ltd. today!

COVID19 Financial Relief for Tenants

On May 25, 2021 Premier Jason Kenney announced the Government of Alberta’s plans for reopening.  This announcement is in response to the dropping number of new COVID-19 infections and pandemic-related hospitalizations in Alberta. Coupled with the news of the number of citizens with at least one dose of a COVID-19, it looks like the province is on track to reopening in a planned three stage approach.

The uncertainty during this state of emergency continues to be a challenge for many — even as we head into the staged re-opening.  Many tenants who are not paying their rent are experiencing legitimate income problems and economic hardships. Especially those who rely on a steady income to pay for their bills and other responsibilities.  Not every job comes with the option to work from home.  Similarly, not every job has been deemed an essential service and people have been laid off or in a position of reduced hours.  The fear of displacement due to outside forces is a very real fear for many.  This is further compounded by property owners who are in turn facing financial hardship and economic distress when rental payments are not honoured.

A common issue discussed in the world of property management is how to handle late rental payments and in the most challenging of circumstances, how to deal with a failure to pay rent. Evictions are a last resort option — but if you do go down this road, check out Emerald Management & Realty Ltd.’s recent blog post: Evicting a Tenant for NonPayment of Rent for some useful information about the eviction process and how our team can help! 

Overall, the majority of the feedback we have received from tenants is that they have the desire or willingness to make partial payments and agree to a re-payment plan, but have been unable to pay rent in full due to financial hardships.

If you are facing this type of situation, during the state of emergency, below are some of the resources we’ve used and have shared to help tenants and landlords manage rental payments.  

For financial relief from various government jurisdictions, tenants can search out support from:


There are also personal wellness supports available.  These resources are also important, especially recognizing the stressful impact of finances, unemployment, unforeseen difficulties and stressful events like COVID-19:

While every situation is unique and no solution is a “one-size-fits-all” approach, the team at Emerald Management & Realty Ltd. has collaborated on many collection calls.  Depending on the situation, the team has reached out to touch base and check-in with tenants to avoid adding the additional frustration of collection letters and/or 14-day Notices of Eviction.  Again, this can be a challenge to navigate as not every situation is the same as situations vary.  It is important to proceed with care and caution as property managers are not social workers.  The above links and resources are a start to help those facing hardships get the help needed.

For more information about potential supports, visit Emerald Management & Realty Ltd.’s COVID-19 focused blogs that have been published.

The Sundance Apartments: Live and Work above it all!

The following is some useful information about The Sundance Apartments proudly managed by Emerald Management & Realty Ltd.  Located in Downtown Calgary, the Sundance is conveniently situated in Calgary’s West End Core, just 2 blocks from River Valley pathways at 836 – 5 Avenue SW, Calgary.

Currently offering FREE 1 Months Rent at The Sundance Apartments! Move-in ready 1 & 2 bedrooms available. 1 bedrooms starting at $870/month; 2 bedrooms starting at $1145/month (net incentives).  The Sundance Apartments is located at 836 – 5 Avenue SW, Calgary.

Schedule a tour today of your next rental home and check out the urban rental lifestyle of living above it all in Downtown Calgary! Call Emerald Management & Realty Ltd. today at 403-237-8600 to book a tour of your next rental home!


The Sundance Apartments overs a variety of spacious and affordable layouts with spectacular views of downtown Calgary and the beautiful landscape of the north west.

  • incredible views to enjoy while living and/or working above all that downtown Calgary has to offer
  • pet friendly and close proximity to several green spaces for the enjoyment of your pet
  • conveniently located by the C-Train, Bow River bike and pedestrian pathways
  • public transit and proximity to major traffic routes makes it easy to access grocery stores, local shops, nightlife, restaurants and coffee shops
  • outstanding shopping at the CORE, TD Square, Kensington & 17 Avenue SW
  • Prince’s Island and Eau Claire Village is nearby and accessible for the health enthusiast seeking to take advantage of the bow river pathway
  • if fitness is a top priority, you are just minutes from outdoor tennis courts, golf, REPSOL Sports Center … AND endless walking/jogging/biking opportunities
  • close proximity to SAIT, University of Calgary, Bow Valley College,  Mount Royal University and Western Canada High School

The Sundance Apartment Features:

Sundance Apartments is located in Calgary’s West End Core, conveniently located 2 blocks from River Valley pathways. Easy access to pubs, great restaurants, art galleries and shopping malls. In addition to the great location and close proximity to everything Downtown Calgary has to offer. In addition:

  • The building has a positive atmosphere
  • Friendly on-site management, and larger updated and renovated suites
  • Onsite Manager available during business hoursUtilities included: Heat, Water AND Electricity
  • Smart Card laundry access
  • Pet Friendly
  • Underground and covered parking available starting at $50/month
  • In-suite storage
  • Restaurants and convenience store located in the building 
  • Private balcony
  • Elevators
  • Welcoming lobby
  • Spectacular City views

Your next rental home at The Sundance Apartments is just around the corner! Contact our friendly team at Emerald Management & Realty Ltd. by calling 403-237-8600 and book your personal tour today!


Virtual Tours:

Interested? Contact us today to schedule a tour!