Renter's beware: you are being targeted.
Scammers are taking pictures from real home sale listings, posting them as rentals, using their email addresses and demanding a security deposit to be sent to them.
Teri let me know she lost $700 that way, but the email she received from the scammer is full of red flags.
He said "God" wanted him to choose her and that he was in West Africa on a "mission."
These are giveaways that the person is trying too hard to seem trustworthy and are common in most of these type of scams.
Shannon also let me know about a different rental scam. She luckily did not lose her money.
She informed me and I asked her to play along with the scammer to see how eager they were to try to rip her off, and they were very eager.
At one point, Shannon told the scammer she would send a payment the following Friday.
The reply said, "A week from now? I've had cases of people promising and I don't hear back. I don't want to waste my time again. How much can you come up with now?"
He wanted a money transfer sent to a Nigerian address. C'mon really!
If you step back and think about these for a while, you can see through the scam.
- If you're a renter, make sure to check county records so you know who actually owns the place.
- Also, get a walkthrough with the landlord before giving any money.
- And never wire or transfer money from your bank. It's like cash and once it's gone, it's gone.
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