I received this message in my email and assume it's legit. Even if it isn't, beware renters - know and check out the person who takes your deposit!
The Port Orange Police Department wished to notify our citizens about a scam involving houses being falsely advertised for rent on Craigslist.
It appears the criminal has found houses for sale on-line or snowbird residences and copied the information onto a Craigslist ad claiming it up for rent. The criminal claims to have moved to West Africa after winning a petroleum land bid and after much consideration decided to rent out the house instead of selling it.
The e- mail states that they are looking for someone who cares about the house as much as they do. At the bottom of the e-mail there is a questionaire for the potential renter asking the Full Name, DOB, Occupation, Number of People living in the house, etc.
The catch is that the security deposit and rent money need to be sent to Africa and then the "home owner" will send the keys to the renter. The e-mails are coming from an account set up in the real homeowner's name. This especially should be of interest to our "Snowbird" citizens.
Please make your friends and neighbors aware of this scam that is sweeping across Florida. Real homeowners are checking on their properties and finding them occupied without their knowledge.
If you have any questions about this or other alerts, please contact Crime Prevention Officer Dave Miller at (386) 506-5822 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sherry Armstrong, Realtor