Craigs List Rental Scam

By
Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty TN R.E. License 292369

As we experience more and more technological 

Scammer

advances there will be schemers who are

determined to cheat and steal hard earned

money from the honest folks we service.  It is for these honest folks that I am posting this warning.    

Beware, if something appears to good to be true, then most likely it is.  

A customer who logged into my website sent me two links and a question.  One of the links was to a listing she found on my website, the other was to the same property posted on Craig's List for rent.   

Her question went like this: 

Message: Hi there - can you confirm that this property for sale is also this one posted on craigs list for rent? here is the post. We are just confirming the accuracy of the posting before we rent.


It was late in the evening when her lead came in so I sent her a note with the listing and told her I would call the listing agent in the morning to inquire about the rental.

In the morning I looked up the Craig's List post and saw a ridiculously low rent amount and a very low security deposit request.  I called the agent with the listing in front of me and asked, "Is this for rent and is this the correct amount".   The listing agent explained, it is a SCAM.  

She explained how it works: the scammers find a listing, swipe the photos and post it as a Craig's List rental at a very low rate and modest security deposit.  Naturally it attracts a lot of interest and after a couple of emails they send you a very convincing letter and this link
:

If you would like to set up an appointment, go to the link below and request the free copy of your rental / credit report. We use this company for all the properties we manage. Just fill out the form and indicate that you want the free credit report. The actual scores on the report aren't important to us; it's more of a formality to have it on file, to make sure you are who you say you are.
Get your report here: http://mycreditnow.net/freecreditreport 

I removed the link but it goes to a very official looking website with Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion all prominently displayed.  After filling out a registration form and a click to submit it another form asking for, yep, you guessed it, your credit card info and the trap is set.

I have also heard of a variation on this where you mail your security deposit (cashiers check), most often out of the country, to hold this great deal of a rental property.  Needless to say that is money you will never see again.

So please people, if you take nothing else away from this remember, if it appears too good to be true, it most likely is.


Posted by

Franklin TN, Brentwood TN and Nashville Tennessee Real Estate

 
Keller Williams Realty
   
 
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Keller Williams Realty - Franklin
9175 Carothers Pkwy, Ste 110 | Franklin, TN 37067 | 615-778-1818
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The opinions expressed by The Activerain Network and it's members and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions of Rodney Kennedy, Mike Nastri or Keller Williams Realty - Franklin, TN which is independently owned and operated. Neither Rodney Kennedy, Mike Nastri or Keller Williams Realty are responsible for the accuracy or content provided by The Community.
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craigs list rental scam

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Rainer
126,384
Tony Grego, 317-663-4173 #1 Trade Association for Alternative Inv
REISA - 317-663-4173 - Indianapolis, IN

you summed it up with "if it sounds to good to be true it is"

 

CL has great value but the most risk

tony

Nov 21, 2009 03:30 AM #1
Rainer
63,741
Krista Wach
Re/Max Omega | Assistant Manager - Arcadia, CA

I have seen these fake postings on craigslist before. I even had clients (renters) almost fall for one of the scams. Similar to your story, they contacted me about a rental on craigslist, and I told them it's too good to be true. They went to the apartment rental office, and they confirmed it was a scam. Watch out and Beware!

Nov 21, 2009 03:33 AM #2
Rainer
69,144
Sue Wettstein Brazzel & Dipper Wettstein
Howard County, MD - RE/MAX 100 - Columbia MD - Columbia, MD
"Fast, Efficient, Hassle-Free Service!"

Mike,

That has happened with two of my listings in the past couple of months.  I only found out because potential renters were showing up at my properties and knocking on the door!  We contacted the FBI, but to no avail.  It happened again to the same property even after removing the post!

Sue

Nov 21, 2009 03:35 AM #3
Rainmaker
278,265
Franklin & Brentwood, TN Homes Mike Nastri
Keller Williams Realty - Franklin, TN
It matters to us as much as it matters to you.

I went to the credit report link, it is such a good fake.  It seems that the owners of the site could be tracked down somehow.  

Krista, Tony and Sue, I just hope people that are too naive to figure out it is a scam don't get hurt by these thieves.  So many young folks may not realize it is too good to be true.

Nov 21, 2009 03:41 AM #4
Rainer
223,466
Sandy Wagner
RE/MAX Professionals 253.225.8322 - Gig Harbor, WA
Short Sale Specialist Tacoma, WA, and Gig Harbor,

This happened to me as well. It seems to be happening more and more.

Nov 21, 2009 04:59 AM #5
Ambassador
2,758,520
TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc.
Complete Home Inspections, Inc. - Brentwood, TN
Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029

Mike, Right as rain on that one buddy... "IF it sounds too good to be true..."

Helping you live your American dream...

Nov 21, 2009 08:51 PM #6
Rainmaker
215,151
The Brewer Team - Benchmark Realty
Benchmark Realty - Franklin, TN

Mike - Sometimes it helps to know who you are dealing with. It's a lot like a FSBO. If you want to trust them, go ahead.

Nov 22, 2009 12:04 PM #7
Ambassador
1,703,460
Tammie White, Broker
Franklin Homes Realty LLC - Franklin, TN
Franklin TN Homes for Sale

Mike, this is unbelievable.  I hate to venture how much money these scammers have made from gullible people.

Nov 22, 2009 12:26 PM #8
Anonymous
Liz Dickinson

Hi.  I've been looking for about 6 months at houses, duplexes, townhomes, condos, etc.  I have found three Craigslist scams in the last two days, and am soooo wary that this may be one as well.

Here's the link:

 

http://kansascity.craigslist.org/apa/1945724210.html

This was bookmarked on my computer, so I can't tell if the ad is up anymore.  Let me explain.  

Called Sandy. We met, viewed the place, I liked it.  She gave aps, we filled them out.  I didn't get an office to return them to... just a number.  I knew there was someone else interested, and they filled out their apps and turned them in (to where I don't know, she said she would meet me back a the duplex to turn them in when I was ready) and they were NOT approved, or, um... didn't pay their deposit or something... so both sides are rentable I guess.

I am supposed to meet her tomorrow at noon to see the other half of the duplex, which is supposed to be nicer- and bring my applications, application fees, and deposit.  Well, I don't know why they'd want my deposit before my credit is run.  Does this seem scammy to others as well???

Can I find out somehow?? We really liked this place.  

Sep 15, 2010 07:42 AM #9
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Rainmaker
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Franklin & Brentwood, TN Homes Mike Nastri

It matters to us as much as it matters to you.
Buying or Selling your home, call Mike (615) 294-3912
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