While searching for a property on Craigslist Seattle, it is critical that you be aware of the numerous frauds that have been listed there. One thing to look out for is sloppy grammar in the listing, a price that appears to be too good to be true, and a poster that won’t come to your home and do an inspection before collecting rent or a deposit. Here are five examples of housing and rental scams that have made local news to give you a better idea of what to look out for in the future.
1. The woman busted in a room rental scam.
In April of 2018, deputies from the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office apprehended a woman who had advertised a rental scam enterprise on the Craigslist Seattle website. She is being investigated for her alleged role in a rental fraud that has been going on for several years in the region—the suspect advertised on Craigslist Seattle and Facebook, among other places.
Victims of the fraud were instructed to meet her at the residence advertised on 114th Avenue East in order to inspect the space. Some house seekers who fell for the fraud signed the rental agreement, which appeared authentic at the time, and provided her deposit payments ranging from $650 to more than $1,600 to rent the room, which was later returned to her. It was common for the victims to discover that the locks had been changed when they attempted to move in, and the brave suspect would provide them with excuses as to why they couldn’t yet move in.
One victim, Kat Benjamin, stated that she arrived at the location with all of her belongings, but that when she banged on the door or tried to phone, there was no answer or response. When communication was eventually established, the suspect claimed that a better contract was required and that she had not yet completed the necessary paperwork. In the city of Puyallup, the property is located in the South Hill neighborhood. When deputies from the sheriff’s office arrived to arrest the woman for the scam, they discovered her hiding in the attic. In addition to theft of rental or leased property, trafficking stolen property, and theft, she was also arrested and placed into the Pierce County jail on counts of resisting arrest and resisting arrest.
2. College student victim of housing scam in Craigslist Seattle
A college student from Arizona was looking for housing in Seattle since she needed to be close to an internship opportunity. The victim of an old Craigslist Seattle scam was shocked to realize that he had been duped into purchasing a townhouse, much to his disappointment. Austin Grad responded to a classified ad for a townhouse to rent in the lower-Queen Anne district. He stated that the poster returned his phone call, gave all of the material that Grad had requested, and addressed all of his questions about the advertisement. Because it appeared to be authentic, Austin wired him the $2,500 deposit as well as the first month’s rent payment.
When Grad got to the property, he learned that there was another person residing there with him at the time. In the ten minutes before his arrival, Grad had spoken with the scammer on the phone, and the scammer had informed him that the room was ready for him to move into. Grad knew he had been duped when he arrived and that the fraudster had stopped responding to his phone calls and texts upon arrival. Scams of this nature are frequently perpetrated by nations other than the United States. When renting a property, the rule of thumb is to avoid sending money by wire transfer.
3. Home stripped bare after fake online Ad.
Here’s another example of how phone rental/housing advertising on Craigslist Seattle may defraud unsuspecting individuals. An advertisement for a deal that people couldn’t refuse was put in Laurie Raye’s hometown of Tacoma, Washington, and she discovered it when she returned home. The post indicated that individuals were welcome to come and take anything they wanted out of the alleged rental house for free because everything needed to be disposed of quickly and efficiently.
People took what they wanted from her home as a result of the hoax, despite the fact that it was not a rental and hence did not require cleaning. It just took two hours to strip the house down to its bare bones, which included the windows and light fixtures. Raye’s sister had been evicted from her house when the scam was perpetrated.
4. Beware: Scammers Repost legit Capitol Hill apartment listings.
Despite the fact that the Capitol Hill rental market is brimming with postings, some of them have proven to be scams. There is a new fraud going around, and thieves are taking advantage of legal classified ads to repost advertisements for apartment rentals that have previously been rented. The actual owners of the house have already done the legwork for the scammers, who have made plans to rent out the rooms for $500 less than the price listed on the initial posting. The advertising uses the same images and wording as the originals, giving the impression that they are authentic.
Communication with victims is conducted via email and internet phone calling services that have been configured with bogus numbers that are saved on our system and are only valid for that particular phone call. If something appears to be too good to be true, it almost certainly is, so renters should exercise caution.
5. Craigslist Seattle vacation scam
The vacation scam is another nefarious fraud that has been advertised on Craigslist Seattle. Scammers advertise rooms or condos for rent in the region to those who are planning a vacation in the area. The residences are authentic, and the posters utilize legitimate photographs and facts in their advertisements, but the problem is that they do not actually own the property.
Victims pay in advance via Western Union wire transfer or cheque, but when they arrive at the property, they discover that they have been duped and that they have been created. This occurred in the case of Alan Stout and Angela Miceli. They travelled to Seattle in order to be married. Angela’s father had rented a house for the bridal party on Craigslist Seattle, but when the guests arrived, they discovered that the house was already occupied by the family of Angela.
A Guide to Using Craigslist Seattle the Right Way
Seattle, located in the Pacific Northwest, is a thriving and beautiful metropolis. Numerous individuals appreciate the simplicity of posting products for sale on the local Craigslist Seattle online classified ads, as well as using the classified ads to discover items that they need, such as appliances, cars, pickup trucks, recreational vehicles, and other items.
Even though it’s a fantastic resource, you must exercise utmost caution when deciding who to put your trust in when using it. Recent years have seen an increase in the number of scams conducted through the site in the greater Seattle area, which has reached absurd proportions. That’s why we’ve put together this guide on utilizing Craigslist Seattle in order to prevent you from becoming a victim of a scam.
How to spot a scam
Whenever you’re working with someone you don’t know, it’s wise to proceed with caution. In the Seattle region, there have been a number of various scams that have caused problems. The first step in safeguarding oneself against con artists on the site is to become familiar with the kind of frauds that are widespread in the area.
Rental and property scams, car for sale scams, fake check scams, and phone ticket sale scams have all been reported on Craigslist Seattle in recent years. If you want to be sure that no new warnings have been added to the list, you can also check with your local chapter of the Better Business Bureau on a regular basis. Following that, we’ll go over some of the most typical scams and teach you what indications to look for that indicate it’s time to walk away from a transaction.
Tickets for sale scam
As a result of the large number of events taking place, such as professional sporting events, concerts, and other paid events, bogus ticket sales have become a significant problem on the local Craigslist Seattle site. In other circumstances, people sell tickets that they are unable to use, even though the tickets are totally valid and original. However, scammers have made it difficult to determine whether the tickets you purchase are genuine or counterfeit.
There have been numerous victims who have spent hundreds of dollars on event tickets only to discover that they are counterfeit when they get to the venue. The reason they are no longer valid for usage is that they have either already been used or that replicas of them have been fabricated and sold to dozens of unwitting victims. When you purchase tickets from a private party on Craigslist Seattle, you are taking a gamble on the outcome.
Home rental scams
Several scammers target realtors in the area on a regular basis, taking the information that they use to offer homes for sale in the neighborhood on other websites. In their bogus advertisements, con artists copy the photographs, descriptions, addresses, and, in some cases, even the names of genuine estate firms. Instead of listing the homes for sale, they list them for rent at a rate that is significantly lower than what the residences would normally rent for.
Here are some of the telltale signs that you’re dealing with a con artist. They will fabricate an explanation for why they are unable to meet with you face to face. They frequently present a sob tale, claiming to be missionaries, serving in the military, or dealing with a family catastrophe, or something along those lines.
According to them, you should drive by the house and disregard the “for sale” sign in the yard. Every transaction, including the deposit and rent money, must be completed online, and they insist on receiving them via wire transfer. They agree to mail the keys to you, but once the money has been delivered, they halt all communication with you, and you have been taken advantage of. If you see any of these warning indicators, immediately cease all contact with the individual and do not provide them with any of your personal information. They may be collecting rental applications in order to obtain your personal information for the purpose of identity theft.
Fake check scams
Persons selling products on the Craigslist Seattle should be on the lookout for people who contact them and indicate they are interested in purchasing an item they have posted for sale without even visiting the location where the item is located. In most cases, they will not argue about the price and will agree to send a cashier’s check by overnight mail. The check is written for a sum that is far greater than the agreed-upon price.
They instruct the seller to deposit the check, retain the fee for the item plus a small amount as a charge for their trouble, and then wire the remaining monies to a “shipper” through wire transfer. This is all indicative of a scammer attempting to defraud you, as the check will bounce a few days after it is placed, and you will be liable for the full amount of the check, plus fees, as well as the cost of the item being picked up and delivered.
Scams using fictitious shippers and vehicles
Old automobile for sale scams is another type of fraud that can be found on Craigslist Seattle. An advertisement for a vehicle with a photo is posted on the internet, along with its specifications and a cheap selling price. The “owner” claims that they are unable to meet with you in person but that they would sell the vehicle through a safe “shipper,” which is typically a reputable source such as eBay Motors or a similar website.
They send you an email with a link that appears to be completely authentic, complete with the eBay logo and everything. As a warning, this is a fraud site, and if you pay money to them in exchange for the vehicle, they will take it and flee, and you will never hear from them again, making it difficult to get your money back. If you want to avoid becoming the next victim of this scam, only do business with persons who are local and are willing to meet you face to face in a public place.
Read More: Craigslist Austin Full Guide Everything You’ll Need to Know
How to Make Use of Craigslist Seattle to Your Advantage
Craigslist Seattle is one of the most well-known online classifieds marketplaces in the United States. For users to purchase, sell, or trade a wide variety of items and services, it provides a one-stop-shop. With the proper knowledge and skills, Craigslist Seattle may be a fantastic resource for finding what you’re looking for or getting rid of what you don’t need.
For starters, here are a few suggestions to get you started:
Using Craigslist Seattle to find furniture, appliances, clothing, and other home products at a lower cost is a terrific way to save money. In order to make the most of your trip, though, there are a few things to keep in mind. First and foremost, devote sufficient time to researching your options and comparing pricing across different sellers. First and foremost, be on the lookout for frauds that are frequent on Craigslist Seattle.
It might be someone who requests money by wire transfer before shipping the item, or it could be vendors who never deliver the item after receiving payment. Final step: meet in a public place to conduct the transaction with the assistance of another person to ensure everyone’s safety. Finally, be patient – it may take a bit longer to find what you’re looking for, but the savings will be well worth the effort!
Craigslist Seattle as compared to other locations
When compared to other cities, Craigslist Seattle is a little different. Seattle is a larger city, and as a result, there are more categories, such as Job Offers, Housing, Services, and For Sale, among others. Another portion on this website is dedicated to Seattle Events, which contains information on things like concerts, festivals, and theatrical shows. Pets are not specifically listed on the Craigslist Seattle, as is the case with other cities’ Craigslist’s. Pets, on the other hand, is a component of the For Sale section.
Seattle is a large city with many alternatives, but Craigslist Seattle is a good place to start. One of the best places to shop for a wide selection of things is still Seattle, Washington. Craigslist has a plethora of categories, and you can discover anything from a job to housing to automobiles on the website. You can also get information on services and events in your local neighborhood. The best part is that everything is free or inexpensive, and you can locate local offers that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to find. Keep in mind that because there are so many alternatives on Craigslist Seattle! e, it might be daunting, but it is well worth your time to look around.