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Online Scam Targeting Renters

By: Rahel Solomon Email
By: Rahel Solomon Email

HURRICANE, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- The sign advertising the sale of 111 Hampton Lane in Hurricane is unassuming and rather small, which is why homeowner Thomas Hartman said he was surprised by the all attention the house has been getting.

“We've had a lot of local foot traffic come through inquiring about the rental property,” Hartman said Saturday.

Hartman’s home is for sale -- not for rent, but according to a posting on Craigslist the only thing stopping someone from renting the home is a $ 700 security deposit and $ 800 per month for rent.

“It makes it sound legit,” Hartman said, “It has my name signed at the bottom.”

Craigslist scams have become so popular; the site has a page devoted to how to protect oneself from being a victim. Some of the tips include never doing business with someone who isn’t local.

In the listing for the Hampton Lane home the poster claims his family is from France, but that they now live in California.

The listing also states that you can only see the house from the outside; another red flag according to the Craigslist warning page.

Hartman said he thought about adding another sign in his front yard warning people that he's been the victim of a scam, but said he didn't want to scare away people interested in buying the home.

Hartman said the entire ordeal has been frustrating, “somebody’s out there trying to get security deposits and run off with your money.”

WSAZ.com tried to contact the man posting the ad, but those calls were not returned.


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