As we experience more and more technological
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.
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.
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.