Scammers have upped the game

10 Replies

I have had more than a few placements using Craigslist.  Scammers have always been a problem there, copying my ad and listing it at ridiculously low prices.  I often search for and report them if they copy my ad.  Usually it's only copied the first week I post them.  My last rental, I even had someone call saying they paid the money and tried to get the keys from me.  I already had it rented and the tenants were moving in at this time. 

    I ended up finding it on housesforrent (.) ws. Potentially this site itself is in on the scam, because the reporting function there doesn't work.

    On to the updated scam,  posted another rental on Craiglist, checked today and my listing was flagged as prohibited.  Found the fake ad again on housesforrent (.) ws less than half price.  The kicker is, they've added detail to the ad that they could only have gotten by calling me.  For intstance, they have my pet fee amounts, that are unpublished and specific to number of pets, listed exactly.

   I've searched this scammer's number and they are obviously copying ads all across the country.  I may have to forgo Craigslist from now one, it's too much hassle.

Originally posted by @Mike S. :

I have had more than a few placements using Craigslist.  Scammers have always been a problem there, copying my ad and listing it at ridiculously low prices.  I often search for and report them if they copy my ad.  Usually it's only copied the first week I post them.  My last rental, I even had someone call saying they paid the money and tried to get the keys from me.  I already had it rented and the tenants were moving in at this time. 

    I ended up finding it on housesforrent (.) ws. Potentially this site itself is in on the scam, because the reporting function there doesn't work.

    On to the updated scam,  posted another rental on Craiglist, checked today and my listing was flagged as prohibited.  Found the fake ad again on housesforrent (.) ws less than half price.  The kicker is, they've added detail to the ad that they could only have gotten by calling me.  For intstance, they have my pet fee amounts, that are unpublished and specific to number of pets, listed exactly.

   I've searched this scammer's number and they are obviously copying ads all across the country.  I may have to forgo Craigslist from now one, it's too much hassle.

its going to come full circle were rentals will go in print media .. back to the future.. and craigslist has been so infected that it is no longer viable for real estate landlording. 

I post on zillow/hotpads/trulia... The leads I was getting from CL were garbage.

Zillow Rental Manager is a great free way to post. I hate Craigslist with a passion. Also look on Facebook for groups or pages that post local rentals available. They are all over the place. Usually Zillow Rental Manager gets me 10-20 call backs in a couple of days. (posts to Zillow, Trulia, and HotPads)

@Mike S. the problem with Craigslist is that it has remained free. Their decision not to monetize the service will become it's downfall. Without resources to put protections in place, the scammers have just taken control. Half the listings in "homes for rent" in my city are some type of lease to buy scam. The same number is listed hundreds of times and Craigslist can't seem to shut them down, yet I occasionally get flagged for no reason at all. Realtors post listings in for sale by owner. The entire community has gone to crap (thanks everyone). 

If you do use Craigslist, add phone number watermarks across your photos. Put the phone number right in the middle of the photo, so they can't crop it out. That makes it hard to steal photos.

Report the scam to your local police department. If they took someone's money, a crime has been committed.  It sounds like an interstate criminal activity, so likely they will refer it to the FBI. 

Originally posted by @Max T. :

I post on zillow/hotpads/trulia... The leads I was getting from CL were garbage.

does it cost money to post on those sites.. does it cost money to post on craigs list ?   

Originally posted by @Jay Hinrichs :
Originally posted by @Max Tanenbaum:

I post on zillow/hotpads/trulia... The leads I was getting from CL were garbage.

does it cost money to post on those sites.. does it cost money to post on craigs list ?   

 Zillow Rental Manager syndicates to Hotpads and Trulia. It’s free. 

Scammers need an address and nice frontal  photo.

I went to just providing cross streets a long time ago.  Give that a try!