Internet / tv

The Craigslist Rental Scams

One of the most interesting things about moving in the 21st century is the Craigslist Rental Scam.  Believe me, we will have moved to Seattle, to St. Louis, and now to Chattanooga in the last five year and every time we have ran into this plague on the good name of Craigslist.

We didn’t have as much when we went west, but I chalk that up to it being 2008 and the scammers not being as prevalent.

Now, almost half of the rental houses we see on Craigslist are scams.

Yet, I have to wonder who these scams are for.  There are obviously people in the world that will send money overseas because the landlord was “called away to London on business,”  or “in Cambodia on a mission trip.”

They are for the ignorant and the trusting.  Those who believe that people are good at heart and that we have a global society of people who want to rent out a house they own in Tennessee, even though they refer to their wife as “my honorable spouse,” and talk about the “times amazing” that they had watching their kids grow up in the house that, in the picture, looks about five years old.

My wife has gotten very amazing at picking them out by their bad grammar and underwhelming use of the English language, but some of them can get pretty good.

Here is an email we got from a listing we could not tell was a scam:

We thought we got the place rented this morning to a youthful couple, but communication has fallen off. you are the first individual to email about it since we put it back on the marketplace . It would only be sensible that we offered you the first shot at the property. Ordinarily, we would like a 12 months lease, but would also be open to smaller terms. I’m sure that you will want to see the property prior to making a final determination. I will accept pets no more than 3. I would just give you the address and let you swing by, but my spouse is against blindly marketing an empty residence on the web. Rest assured the house is up kept appropriately and had a good cleanup and fresh new coat of paint. Basic utilities are presently on, but we expect that you would get them put into your name fairly fast. If you want to go ahead and schedule a time to see the property or home, go to the link below and print off the free copy of your report. Your score isn’t specifically crucial, we’re just interested in seeing that there are no evictions / landlord related judgments. go HERE contact number to reach you at and any desired time. I will call you to confirm a time and choose a place to meet. Thanks for looking,

There are some wonderful moments here.  Right off the bat we find out that they almost rented the place to a “youthful couple,” and that it would “only be sensible” if they rented to us instead.

Then, we find out that their “spouse is against blindly marketing an empty residence on the web.”

I have omitted the link since I am sure it goes somewhere malevolent.  It was directing me to a webpage under the website called Yellow, which I goggled and got nothing.

I really want to interview someone from this world.  Here is the email I sent to the scam artist.

Dear —,

From your reply to my inquiry, I believe that you are someone who is in the business of Craigslist scams.  I am not judging, I find it to be very interesting.  How would like to give me an interview (either over email or on the phone/Skype).  I would keep your name out of the article, but think it would be very interesting to talk to you.  Email me back if you are interested.  I could make you big time news in the United States, like a Kardashian or Mickey Mouse.  Let me know if you would like to talk to me.

Now, we wait.  I would love to land an interview with one of these guys or gals.  Has anyone ever seen one before?  I think Chris Hansen should stop baiting perverts and cover this!

Maybe I could be the Hansen of Craigslist scams.

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