Scammers target potential renters with fake online rental ads

For Rent sign in front of new house

As more people head to Facebook and Craigslist to find homes to rent, scammers are posting fake ads to swindle you out of your hard earned money.

Con artists are finding legitimate homes for rent and tricking realtors and lockbox companies into giving them the lockbox code with the key to the house in it. When they post the fake rental ad online, they alter the contact information and give out the lockbox code to potential renters so they can see the home without an agent.

The scammer then requests the renter to wire a large cash down-payment. After they get the money, they never contact the renter again.

If you’re looking to rent a home and the rent appears too good to be true, experts say it is most likely a scam. It is also important to always meet with the person who is renting the home before wiring any cash.