It isn't an unreasonable idea. Searching through Craigslist ads for an apartment or house to rent can be a great way to find your next home. Unfortunately, just like other wonderful online resources, there are those who will take advantage. Knowing that you are looking for a home, professional spammers post ads, listing amazing properties at rock bottom prices.
Before you look for that perfect rental property, recognize an offer that's too good to be true. It isn't difficult. In fact, it will probably have the following features: plenty of square footage, like-new condition, pet friendly, and (of course) unusually low rent. The supposed landlord will typically even offer reassurances about bad credit not being an issue, or no deposit being needed.
When I contacted one of these Too Good to Be True! sounding ads, I received a reply email that only confirmed by suspicions. I'm posting an abbreviated version here. If you receive an email for a Craigslist poster that sounds similar, don't bother to reply. It's a phishing scam.
First and foremost, thank you for your interest in the home. I am available to show the house this week if that fits your schedule.
Just to give you a little more information about the home, the water, trash
and garbage are paid by us. The security deposit can be paid in 2 installments if money is tight. (I know how that can be). The house has a fenced in backyard and we do allow pets. The deposit per pet is a one time payment. The house includes a washer and dryer, and we pay for lawn care so the renter does not have to cut the grass. There is NO application fee (our company policy and guarantee)...
It is okay if you have bad credit (trust me). We just check to make sure that you don't have several evictions on your record. (We won't rent if you have 3 or more evictions on your record).
As soon as you can, please click the link below and go to the secure website to complete the free credit report (takes about 30 seconds). Once you complete, I'll call you once I receive the information from the credit company (very quickly usually)...
If eligible you will also be sent an email with my office number so we can set up a time to go see the house and discuss any other questions or concerns you may have.