Rental Scams/ Craigslist real estate scams.
We are kind of surprised that we need to post this again, but lately we have been getting more calls about various scam listings so here is another reminder that if it is too good to be true, it is!
Important notice: We do not handle any rentals. If you see a property rental advertisement anywhere on the internet, especially on craigslist, claiming to be listed by us, it is a scam. We specialize in residential property sales and DO NOT handle any rentals.
The most common Craigslist scam are “Cloned listings”. These scammers steal real pictures from real listings for sale and post them to sites like Craigslist as rentals. Usually the rental rates are significantly below market. If you find a great deal on an apartment- it’s a scam. On all these scam listings you will not be able to tour the inside of the property before you send in your deposit. The scammers will often say they are out of town or there is a tenant in there or especially now with COVID-19, that unit cannot be shown until a lease is signed money wired. If 'owner' will not allow you to personally visit the property- move on to the next property, it is a scam. Always personally visit the property and confirm that the person renting the place actually owns it. None of these scammers will meet you at the property. DC has an online database so you can confirm the real owner of a property. https://www.
- NEVER wire money to anyone without meeting them and verifying that they own the property.
- If it is too good to be true, it is.
Stay safe out there.
Here are a few places to read more about these scams:
"Do not extend payment to anyone you have not met in person.
- Beware offers involving shipping - deal with locals you can meet in person.
- Never wire funds (e.g. Western Union) - anyone who asks you to is a scammer.
- Don't accept cashier/certified checks or money orders - banks cash fakes, then hold you responsible.
- Transactions are between users only, no third party provides a "guarantee".
- Never give out financial info (bank account, social security, paypal account, etc).
- Do not rent or purchase sight-unseen—that amazing "deal" may not exist.
- Refuse background/credit checks until you have met landlord/employer in person."
If you are a victim of an internet scam please file a report with the FBI https://www.ic3.gov/complaint/default.aspx/
Here are a Few more articles on some of the more common scams.
NEVER WIRE ANY MONEY TO ANYONE ON CRAIGSLIST- IT IS ALWAYS A SCAM.
And again: NEVER WIRE ANY MONEY TO ANYONE ON CRAIGSLIST- IT IS ALWAYS A SCAM.