Craigslist Scams

In this area we are just getting started into peak time for real estate on both selling and buying as well as renting. Of course this unfortunately means that the scammers are out there more and more.

Although there are many sites available, craigslist is the largest and most know for these types of scams. That doesn’t mean you have to avoid the site at all costs…just be careful with what information you give away. You can find rentals on our site as well or even work with an agent. But if you go about it yourself just keep these pointers in mind.

Scammers tend to use the same story or a variation. They are in Africa because they “surprisingly” won an auction and now own oil fields or are there for missionary work or something similar. The stories generally sound a little off and while most people don’t fall for them…enough have to where it is still an issue. Here is an example

I received your response concerning my Advertisement published on Craigslist The house is still available am the owner of the home and i bid for a portion of petroleum land a while back in West Africa and fortunately I just won the bidding so I had to move quickly down to Africa to have my company set up because I still have to rebid for it in the next 4 to 5 years. I came over here with my wife and two kids and before we got here i thought of selling the home but had to change my mind because of my wife, she preferred we had it up on the rental market I had to look for an agent, after getting one, we got a deal but later we found out that he was renting it out for a higher price than what we agreed on and i don’t want an occupant that will be paying a lot and not have time for the home because of the price of the home. If you notice, you will discovered that the price we are offering is far below standard price, this is enough for you to know that we are not after the rental fee so I contacted the Agent back and requested for my keys and documents the maintenance of the home is far more important to me I know there is no way I can be sure that you are the right person to live in the house because we won’t be able to see before sending you the keys and the documents to occupy the space.. But I just have a feeling that anyone who knows the values of a home should know that maintaining a home is essential, so if you believe you can take good care of the house and handle it like yours then I will be more than happy to let you rent the house.

Please if you are interested in renting my house kindly provide the information below.

Full Name Prefix__________________________________________________ (CELL)PHONE________________________
Date of Birth_________________________________
Home Phone (    )___________________ 

Other Phone (    )________________________
Current Address_______________________________

Reasons for Leaving Old Home____________________________

Rent $__________
Phone (    )____________________________
Are you married____________________________
How many people will be living in the house____________________________
Do you have a pet____________________________
Do you have a car____________________________
Move In Date____________________________
Rent/Month: $700___________________________
Deposit Payment: $500___________________________

You could give me a call as soon as possible if you can call internationally if you can’t please indicate so i can call you so we could proceed ASAP.

Please note that you will only be able to drive by the house for now but not have a look at the interior until i have sent the keys and documents of the house to you and the requirement for getting the keys and documents of the house is a fully refundable payment, which is the security deposit.

Please note that the deposit made is fully refundable the deposit is just to make sure that you are really interested in the home and also to hold the home for you so we don’t rent it out to someone else, after receiving the keys and documents if you feel unsatisfied or uncomfortable with the interior, but i am giving you a benefit of doubt that you will love everything about this lovely home…

I Await your response so that we can discuss on how to get the document and the keys to you. My cell phone numbers are :(+234-XXX-XXX-8505 or +011-234-XXX-XXX-8505) you can call or text

Best Regards”

As you can see from phrases like “Please note that you will only be able to drive by the house for now but not have a look at the interior until i have sent the keys and documents of the house to you and the requirement for getting the keys and documents of the house is a fully refundable payment, which is the security deposit.” Where do they get the information and the pictures though? Anywhere! Usually they will log onto ANY real estate site and take the pictures from there. That way if you do drive by…it all looks the same.

So beware! And remember what we’ve all been told before…if it’s too good to be true, it is.

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