Rochester Renters Beware
People are creating fake ads using real listings via Craigslist and other similar websites!
Unfortunately this is happening all over the place, and has been happening for quite some time. I actually remember when I was looking for places in Iowa 10 years ago, I saw a ridiculous amount of fake ads. I had to remind myself, if it sounds too good to be true, chances are it is! .
Rochester is a prime resident location with the Mayo Clinic. Less than a month ago, residents across the country found out they were to move to Rochester to begin their next chapter. Can you imagine looking for a place in a city you've never been to that you know virtually nothing about?
Also, it's April. The school year is winding down. If you're a student on the lookout for your first place, use extra caution when looking for rentals online.
The Better Business Bureau of Minnesota has issued a warning to help keep us safe
WHAT TO WATCH OUT FOR:
- Low prices! The BBB says scammers will often list a rental for a very low price to lure in victims.
- The landlord is not located in Rochester and prefers to communicate solely via email.
- Grammatical or spelling errors – often a sign the ad may have been created by overseas scammers
- Requests to wire money. If they ask you to use services such as Western Union or MoneyGram, or if you’re told the deposit or rent needs to be paid with a Green Dot MoneyPak card. The BBB says any money sent via these means is extremely difficult to trace, and there is little chance – if any – of getting your money back.
- They ask for money BEFORE you meet the landlord.