Hijacked to Craigslist, I get it, but TO Trulia? Really?

By
Real Estate Agent with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties Licensed in Connecticut
https://activerain.com/droplet/4zJx

listing hijacked to truliaWe all hear horror stories about listings being hijacked and put on Craigslist. But today it would appear that one of my listings was hijacked and placed on Trulia! Really? I would have thought that was very hard to do! (so much for thinking)

No one wants it to happen to them, I put a rental on the MLS the other day for $1,295. I also placed a property flyer on Realbird, and yes, I admit I did make a small mistake and listed it for $1,275. Oops, that is fixed and will show up soon enough.

However.... 

I showed the apartment today to a nice woman, who showed me a screenshot of a second listing of the apartment on Trulia... with a list price of $900 per month, and listed it as "pet friendly". No pets allowed, and it is checked off on the MLS as no pets. 

My photos, same address, my verbiage from what I can see of it.

HORROR OF HORRORS!

I searched Trulia myself and can't find it myself. I am waiting to hear back from Trulia as to how it happened, etc. 

No wonder why I received a text message from the current tenant that said the neighbor texted him, some people were wandering around, ringing the doorbell, banging on the door, peeking in the slider at the back. It was mystifying to me until I saw the listing on Trulia. 

I have placed a rather large note on the door that says it is NOT $900 per month, and if they have already paid someone for it, I can't help them. I also put my contact info on the note. The complex does not allow signs so they could be duped by someone.

But how on earth did it end up on Trulia!?! Awww.. come on now.... Really? 

I will post the answer when I get it. In the meantime... really? 

Posted by

Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County Real Estate

2017 President, Greater New Milford Board of Realtors

2017 Connecticut Magazine 5 Star Realtor

 

 Search homes for sale in Litchfield County, CT.

 

Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Litchfield County Regional Office,375 Danbury Rd, New Milford, CT 06776

 

© Andrea Swiedler 2009 - 2017

 Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest. - Mark Twain

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Rainmaker
510,224
Dan Tabit
Keller Williams Bellevue - Sammamish, WA

Andrea, 

I'm active on Trulia Q&A and this is a huge problem there.  Any post from anywhere gets cloned, repriced and posted by some Nigerian doing charity work who just wants a "good person" to watch over the house.  Send them $X.00 and they PROMISE they will send keys back by mail.  I had this happen to a listing of mine through Craigslist and got it flagged quickly.  It's not your fault and all you can do is take them down when you are aware.  

 

Mar 13, 2015 12:20 PM #12
Rainmaker
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Troy Erickson AZ Realtor (602) 295-6807
Good Company Real Estate www.ChandlerRealEstate.weebly.com - Chandler, AZ
Your Chandler, Ahwatukee, and East Valley Realtor

Andrea - Boy this must be frustrating. Not sure how someone could hack into Trulia - I thought they got syndicated listings mainly through the MLS's (as others have already said). Sorry you are having to deal with this. Hopefully you can get this issue resolved quickly.

Mar 13, 2015 12:29 PM #13
Rainmaker
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Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Ugh. I wish we had the ability to take all these Internet scammers out and set them on their own little island - with NO Internet access. 

It seems to me that I read about individual people being allowed to post on either Trulia or Zillow - so perhaps that's how it happened. 

Mar 13, 2015 02:28 PM #14
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Tammie White, Broker
Franklin Homes Realty LLC - Franklin, TN
Franklin TN Homes for Sale

A few months back, I saw a listing on Zillow for a new construction build. When I looked up that address in our MLS, it was actually listed with another agent and brokerage. One local agent had kidnapped another local agent's MLS to promote new construction. The problem...

  1. It suggested that the listing at that address was his. It wasn't.
  2. The photo he used stated that was a photo of a representative home his company had built. However, I discovered it was a clipart photo. 

I notified the REAL listing agent to the problem. I also filed a complaint with Zillow and it was immediately taken down.

Mar 13, 2015 03:35 PM #15
Rainmaker
683,630
Debra Leisek
Bay Realty,Inc Homer Alaska - Homer, AK

I hope this isnt the beginning of another bad trend. I will not use Craigslist because of all the scammers... hope this doenst become the norm on Trulia too... thanks for a great post!

Mar 13, 2015 05:22 PM #16
Rainmaker
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Joe Petrowsky
Mortgage Consultant, Right Trac Financial Group, Inc. NMLS # 2709 - Manchester, CT
Your Mortgage Consultant for Life

Good morning Andrea. That is very frustrating and unfortunately I see stuff like this happen too often. When information gets out there, in space who knows what will happen to it.

Make it a great weekend!

Mar 13, 2015 07:27 PM #17
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Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT

Dan Tabit so despite my thoughts that Trulia was safe, it is not. I am glad it is gone now, but I am still waiting to hear from Trulia. Meanwhile a sign stays on the door of the unit. Wow...

Marte Cliff I know Zillow has FSBO's on there, and I think they are posting directly onto Zillow. You know, there is only so much I can keep up with, LOL.

 

Mar 13, 2015 08:43 PM #18
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Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT

Tammie White wow, that is gutsy, seriously. Trolling the internet for our listings is getting to be a full time job! 

Debra Leisek I rarely use Craigslist, but a listing can be hijacked even if we don't use Craigslist, which makes it very frustrating. Or should I say, even more frustrating!

Mar 13, 2015 08:45 PM #19
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Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
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Joe Petrowsky It is a real pain for the current tenant, and that is what worries me the most. Anyone who is told to just go over by themselves and look should realize there is something wrong. 

If it's too good to be true, it's too good to be true!

Mar 13, 2015 08:47 PM #20
Rainmaker
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Roger D. Mucci
Shaken...with a Twist 216.633.2092 - Euclid, OH
Lets shake things up at your home today!

Dean, Dean, that is horrible.  Can't wait to hear the outcome of this.....should be quite interesting.

Mar 13, 2015 09:32 PM #21
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Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT

Roger, Roger, it is interesting, and I am with you, I can't wait to hear the outcome, LOL! I hope it is today. 

Mar 13, 2015 10:05 PM #22
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Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

These problems have always been associated primarily with rental properties and rental listings. 

Mar 13, 2015 10:54 PM #23
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Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT

Lenn Harley It is easier for them to scam on rentals, however they certainly take homes for sale and make them rentals. I posted this over on Google+ to see if anyone had this happen to them on Trulia, and Bill Gassett said he did. A big disappointment for me. The big guys like Trulia, Zillow and Realtor.com need to make sure our listings are safe, safe listings equals safe clients for us. I don't know how they will accomplish that, but given their clout, they just need to accomplish that. 

Mar 13, 2015 11:08 PM #24
Rainmaker
1,614,345
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

This hijacking is a problem for you - and a problem for would-be tenants who can get taken for an expensive ride.

Since these scammers ARE out there, it's important to keep spreading the word to the public:

  • Don't ever send your money to someone who promises to send you the keys.
  • Work with an established agent, or at least with an established resident of the community. 
Mar 14, 2015 01:57 AM #25
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Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT

Marte Cliff your suggestions just make sense. When the would be tenants were told to just go over and look, they should have had a clue. 

I'm taking it seriously. Am forwarding the information to our company attorney who can take it up with Trulia. I have other things to do!

Mar 14, 2015 02:20 AM #26
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Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Andrea, yikes!  This is the first I've heard of this nonsense on Trulia.  Wonder if Zillow will be following soon?

Mar 14, 2015 03:26 AM #27
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Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT

Patricia Kennedy could be. I don't know. I guess now that Zillow owns Trulia which owns ActiveRain I should pay more attention. 

Mar 14, 2015 03:36 AM #28
Rainmaker
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Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Andrea - People should use a little common sense, but since they don't, it's up to all of us to keep reminding them. 

Of course, some of those people take things upon themselves anyway. Back when I was an agent I occasionally ran into a buyer who would knock on a door and tell the homeowner that I told them to come alone. It didn't happen often, thank goodness! 

Mar 14, 2015 04:06 AM #29
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Andrea Swiedler
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties - New Milford, CT
Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT

Marte Cliff Yes, that can certainly happen on occasion. I am mystified by that myself. Or an agent giving out a code to a combo lock box to buyer clients. I have seen that too. 

Mar 14, 2015 08:39 PM #30
Rainmaker
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Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

Giving out the code to a lock box isn't just lazy - it's stupid. Think of the liability! I suppose they think "No one will know."

Mar 15, 2015 08:58 AM #31
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