Recently, it has come to our attention that listers are receiving fraudulent email inquiries from potential renters. These inquiries can be identified by the following characteristics:
- The individual lives abroad and is in urgent need of housing in our area, most likely for a short-term stay.
- The individual would like to send a payment in advance of their arrival, and they urgently need the costs associated with the rental, so that they may send you a payment via check, money order, etc.
If you receive an email message with these characteristics, it is most likely fraudulent. Please read the information below to protect yourself against fraudulent rental inquiries and scams.
DEAL LOCALLY WITH PEOPLE YOU CAN MEET IN PERSON - follow this one simple rule and you will avoid most of the scam attempts made through online rental listings.
NEVER WIRE FUNDS VIA WESTERN UNION, MONEYGRAM or any other wire service - anyone who asks you to do so is a scammer.
NEVER GIVE OUT FINANCIAL INFORMATION (bank account number, social security number, eBay/PayPal info, etc.)
AVOID DEALS INVOLVING SHIPPING OR ESCROW SERVICES and know that ONLY A SCAMMER WILL "GUARANTEE" YOUR TRANSACTION.
For more examples of typical scam messages, please click here.