Scammers Post Fake REO Rentals on Craigslist

By
Real Estate Agent with F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC

Freddie Mac’s fraud unit is teaming up with real estate professionals who list HomeSteps homes to sniff out bogus rental ads of REO properties — a growing problem, according to Freddie Mac.

“We’re hearing more reports about fraudsters trying to cash in on the housing crisis’s remaining foreclosed homes by advertising them as rentals on the Internet,” writes Freddie Mac in a recent blog post warning about the Craigslist REO rental scams.

The scam works like this: After a house is sold at foreclosure, a scammer then posts an ad online trying to rent out the home before the new owner moves in. Interest renters then contact the scammer about leasing the property, and they are asked to submit their personal credit information for the lease application as well as two months of rent.

It’s often not until the would-be renters try to move in that they realize they’ve been duped: The key to the house doesn’t work or they find the house is for sale or even that the previous owners are still living there. There have been some cases where scammers change the locks in the house and give the renters a working key. It’s the real estate listing agent who then often discovers the renters living there and the scam.

Freddie Mac and real estate professionals are working together to find the fake Internet rental ads. When they do, they are having the ads removed immediately. They’re also warning renters on how not to be duped from the ads, such as always verifying the home’s status through a listing agent or through county records.

Source: “Caveat Renter: Fraudsters Falsely Advertising REO as Rentals,” Freddie Mac Blog (Oct. 8, 2012)

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Rainmaker
645,176
Team Honeycutt
Allen Tate - Concord, NC

Fake informatoion on the computer seems to be rampant these days. We all need to watch our listings carefully.

Betty

October 10, 2012 09:51 AM #1
Rainmaker
559,622
Mark Loewenberg
Keller Williams of the Palm Beaches - Palm Beach Gardens, FL
PA 561-214-0370

truly aweful that it has come to this in our economy taking advantage of folks here as well... very very uncool

October 10, 2012 10:53 AM #2
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Rainmaker
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Rolando Trentini

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