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4 Signs an Online Apartment Posting is a Scam

April 26, 2022 / by Hignell Rentals Team

Man_stealing_money_through_computer_screenYou're surfing the rental listings on Craigslist and you see the perfect place for you, but the price seems too good to be true - which means it probably is. 

Keep yourself from getting swindled and protect yourself from replying to a fraudulent posting by reading a few tips to keep you safe while searching for an apartment in Chico or Redding.

No name or address

When a reputable apartment complex is trying to attract potential renters, they will put the name of the complex and where they're located. If the posting doesn’t give you the information, and if you inquire and the poster doesn’t give you the address, then move on to the next posting.

Auto-generated email address

Don’t reply to emails that look auto-generated. The email from jfkeiusiehfl@yahoo.com most likely isn’t real. These emails are created so that you have a harder time tracing the email.

If they have a name that is ridiculous it's another red flag. Ndjelfiuejfi is not a name and are normally found associated with a ridiculous email as well. Do not reply to people with names that obviously don’t exist.

Lower-than-average advertised rental amount

When you see a deal that is too good to be true, then that is most likely the case. Some people who are trying to scam will use the same posting for different locations. Check out your area and get an idea on what is average price for a similar caliber apartment. If that number is way larger than the number that is listed on the posting, then you probably found a scam.

A credit check is required too early in the process

Credit checks are a common part of the rental process to ensure that you're financially stable to rent an apartment. But, you shouldn’t have to go through the credit check process before you fill out the application or in order to see the apartment. Be mindful of who you give your social security number and other banking information to. This is how people get their identities and money stolen.

You should also never be required to send money or sign a lease before seeing the apartment. If this is a requirement from the person who posted the apartment ad, then this is a scam.

So, what happens if they give you all of the information you need, they seem like trustworthy people and you can’t find any reason not to trust them? This was the case of a woman in New York. Read her story below to find out how sneaky these scammers can be.

Posted by: Sarah Gates, Huffington Post

How I Fell for an Awful Craigslist Rental Scam and What I Should Have Done Differently

Now, from the beginning: I needed to vacate my apartment by Jan. 31 and my housing situation fell through at the last minute. I had enough funds in my savings to front the massive initial deposit, but I was hesitant to lock myself into a year-long lease -- especially since the situation with my preferred roommates had fallen through. So I instead opted for a short sublet and began scouring Craigslist and other sites for something that would work in a pinch.

That's when I met Kim. We arranged a meeting to see her apartment on E. 9th St. I liked the space. She was friendly, personable and great at small talk. She provided just enough details about her life to draw me in without saying too much to make me question the specifics. We hit it off right away and I thought I had lucked into a great situation at the precise time I desperately needed one.

I was wrong.

[Continue to original article: How I Fell for an Awful Craigslist Rental Scam and What I Should Have Done Differently]

The process of searching for an apartment can be draining, especially if you're trying to evaluate whether listings are scams or real! Make the process easier by checking out the properties at Hignell Rentals.

We have great apartment complexes all throughout Chico, Redding and Northern California, as well as a trustworthy online application process. You can rest assured, we're the real deal!

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Topics: Rental Search, Rental Living Tips

Hignell Rentals is Your Home for Northern California Rentals.

At Hignell Rentals we have been maintaining and renting properties in the North State since 1970. We value relationships and caring communities, honoring and encouraging one another, unwavering integrity, uncommon generosity, and growth and innovation. We strive to provide our residents with a quality living environment across the North State in Redding, Red Bluff, Chico, Oroville and surrounding areas.