Homeless man leases home- twice!
Yes, it’s come to this in Scammerland: A homeless guy that looks like he just stumbled off the beach has managed to swindle a couple of young tenant prospects. No longer safe in trashing our broken-English Nigerian (or “classic”) scam emails, folks now have a new scammer type to be wary of- the surfer dude homeless guy scammer.. What’s the world come to?
Levity aside, this story and our current “holiday week” does provide another opportunity to address these Craigslist-type scams. This one’s a bit of a lay-up, but I’ll point out a few warning signs:
“…contacted Sisson by email and text message and he told her to tour the unlocked house on her own”.. OK class, say it with me: Tenant prospects should always speak to the folks they’re looking to rent from- ALWAYS. And anyone telling a prospect to view an unlocked home by themselves is at best displaying a pitiful example of the whole “fiduciary trust thing”- and at worst a scammer intent on taking your money.
“handed over $450 in cash…$550 cash” for a deposit. Anyone? Hands in the air if you know this is crazy..
Dear tenant prospects, precious little advice on the front end of a leasing tranaction can be more valuable than this: Never, NEVER tender a security deposit OR rent in cash- never. You always want a paper trail- be it a money order’s stub or a cashier’s check’s stub or carbon.
Does that ensure everyone you give a money order or bank check will be legitimate? Of course not- but you’re already leaps and bounds ahead of the cash folks should the ones getting your funds give you a wave and a “Surf’s up!” as you part ways…
Homeless man leases home- twice!”