Sterling First Scam: The Truth About This Rent-for-Life Scam, Victims Speak Out

Sterling first scam promised to connect savvy property investors looking for better rental returns with retirees seeking long-term leases. Retirees in the scheme sold their homes, expecting to live in rental properties for the rest of their lives. This blog post will expose how this investment scam works.

What Happened To Sterling Investmenet

Sterling First collapsed in 2019, Older Australians were told to pay hundreds of thousands as upfront fees for long-term property leases. The scheme claimed to be a alternative option than going into a retirement village.

Who Is Behind The Rent-for-life scam

Raymond Jones, the founder of Sterling First Group, along with Simon Bell and Ryan Jones, faces accusations of assisting Sterling Corporate Services in dishonest conduct. While they haven’t entered pleas, the fact that they’re charged and will appear in court next year offers some relief and closure to those affected. The charges stem from their alleged involvement in deceptive actions, which will be further addressed during the legal proceedings.

How Sterling Investment Lure Victims In

Sterling First marketed itself in 2015-2016 as a rent-for-life scheme. Seniors lured in were in their 60s and 70s. They sold their homes for a promised lifetime rental which involves Investing large amounts, typically in the six-figure range, into SNLL leases. Sadly Sterling group collapsed, The Sterling Group’s collapse in 2019, accused of running the business while it was financially unstable and couldn’t pay its bills. This forced many out of their leased homes, causing distress among those who trusted the scheme.

Victims Of The Stering Investment Scam Speak Out

A couple Graeme and Sheryl Sofield lost $155,000 in their investment with Sterling First, causing stress and sleepless nights.

Annette Taylor, 69, another victim of the Sterling First collapse, lost her entire nest egg of $220,000 and now lives on the age pension, half of which goes to rent. Before going into the scheme, she owned her home. Now she struggles to make ends meet and can no longer afford internet access. A victim said

“We’ve lost $126,000 roughly,” Marsha says. “Emotionally it became very difficult for me because my husband had developed Alzheimer’s and he could not understand what was going on. So I pretty well coped with things alone and looked after him at the same time.” 

“It was dreadful,” Marsha says. “There were very few properties available. Some of them were in areas you don’t want to be but you don’t have much choice.”

Possible Warning Signs:

  1. ASIC got wind of possible issues back in 2015-16 but didn’t do anything.
  2. Despite throwing an interim stop order in 2017, Theta’s product disclosure statement was still doing the same thing in 2018.
  3. Early 2018 brought worries about Sterling Group’s financial health, resulting in the closure of Sterling Income Trust.
  4. ASIC decided to go all-in with a broad investigation in March 2019.
  5. Rumor has it Sterling directors were known as Ponzi schemers, raising questions about why ASIC allowed them to continue operating.

How To Avoid Investment Scams

  1. Be Wary of Deals That Sound Too Good: If an investment seems too amazing, it probably is. Sterling First promised a lot, but the idea of risk-free, high-return housing leases doesn’t add up.
  2. Don’t Dive into Complicated Schemes: Avoid complex financial setups, especially when it comes to your home and retirement savings. Sterling First’s complicated structure caused financial trouble for many retirees.
  3. Check if It’s Trustworthy: Make sure the investment entities are reliable. Sterling First’s collapse shows the importance of looking into the history and reputation of financial organizations.
  4. Ask for Expert Advice: Talk to financial experts before getting into unusual investments. Their advice can help you navigate potential issues and make smart choices.
  5. Stay Informed: Keep yourself updated about the financial products you’re involved in. Sterling First’s victims faced losses because they didn’t have enough information. Stay alert out there.


The Sterling Group and Sterling Income Trust went broke in 2019, possibly trading recklessly for a while. As a result, many renters lost their homes, causing a housing crisis. It highlights the need for quick action and close supervision to prevent such crises from affecting people’s lives.

Read also: Halstead Financial Platform Scam

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *