Today, I want to share with you a scam that some twit tried to pull on unsuspecting apartment seekers. First, some back story. The Amazing Flatmate has decided that our two bedroom apartment simply will not do. I agree. The Amazing Flatmate is now doing a fair amount of work at home, and the only space available is the living room. This means boxes of fabric, yarn, sewing supplies and other paraphernalia of working in costuming are all over the living room. There is room for one person at a time at the moment, so I tend to retreat to my bedroom a lot. I very rarely use the living room any more, and I can't really remember the last time I actually puttered around in there by myself doing my thing. Though, that will be changing soonish as the television and the Xbox are out there, and hopefully I'll soon be all set up for my SMC Awkwardly Plays segment on the Silver Stag Entertainment YoutTube channel.
So, we've been apartment hunting, hoping to find a reasonably sized and priced three bedroom apartment so that the Amazing Flatmate can have an office to work in. During that search, we stumbled across a Craigslist ad for a whole house being offered at $950.00 per month, utilities included. The house was not far from where we are now, with a beautiful deck and yard, and a garage that could be turned into a workshop... It is beautiful! It came fully furnished, which we were not thrilled about... we have our own stuff. Still, the price seemed too good to be true, so the Amazing Flatmate sent the guy an email:
My roommate and I are looking for a bigger place so that we could have some office space and your place looks like it would be pretty perfect. Could we come and look sometime?
Please let me know! Thank you.
The house has 3 bedroom and it cost $950p/m so i am willing to rent it out.. Firstly i will like to know how long you want to stay in my house,because I'm not in Ottawa, Ontario now, as i'm in Georgia, USA now because i just secured a new job here in USA and i will be renting it out for a long time now, as long as you want to stay, It cost $950 per month which include the utilities in the house. It is spacious furnished bedroom, hardwood floor plus secured parking, close to schools and major shopping malls. Comes Furnished with: ***Washer & Dryer, fridge and Stove, TV, Internet, AC, Heater, cooker and lot more.
The house is located in a very peaceful and cool environment, it is 3 bedroom with a kitchen,toilet and bathroom and a living room,the whole house cost $950 per month,also the house is located at:- 1248 Collins Ave Ottawa, ON K1V 6E1, Canada.
MY TERMS AND CONDITION ARE:
1. I ALLOW PETS IN MY HOUSE.
2. I WILL NOT ALLOW ARROGANT
3. CLEANINGS AND TIDINESS IS IMPORTANT.
So if you are still interested let me know asap to proceed on the next step...... Feel free to ask any question.
I wrote back and told the Amazing Flatmate that I had a really bad feeling about that house and I'm not interested in moving in there, not for any seemingly impossibly good deal. Still, there was the issue of the furnishings that the Amazing Flatmate wanted answered:
Thank you so much for your reply. I am very interested however I'm wondering if there's a possibility of getting it unfurnished? I do have my own things I would prefer to move in with.
The hapless scammer answered the Amazing Flatmate thusly:
Thanks for your mail and also sorry for my late response to your message, I've been busy at the hospital with my wife and I pray I don't loose her.. So please forgive me for that, once again thanks for your full interest in my house. Attached are the pictures. It is available as soon as you want it,also if you're moving in with your furniture's there's no problem with that as there's a storage where you can move my stuffs. Its $950 per month, all bills are included in the cost of the house.. Like i told you that i'm not in Ottawa at the moment, that i just secured a new job in a company here in Georgia, USA, which mean i will be renting it out for a long time, am sorry you will not be able to view the interior at the moment but you can drive by to view the exterior, Because the house is currently locked up and have the keys here with me, So for you to get the keys, it will be posted to you via DHL Express along with the payment receipt and all the necessary papers,You will have to make a payment for the place via a money agent to me here in USA but before the payment, you and i will have to sign a rental agreement form in which i will like you to supply me the following details for me to prepare the form and send to you. You can move in as soon as you want:
Name (full name): ____________________
Current Address (full address): ____________________
Date of Birth: ____ / ____ / ____
Home Phone: _______________________
Work Phone: _______________________
Move in: _______________________
Move Out Date: _______________________
How many month rent can you pay upfront to secure the House now ? ___________
You can call me on this number : [number redacted]
No worries about the late reply, I completely understand. I'm so sorry about your wife, I'm going through a similar thing with my twin sister, she's on life support now, I'm praying to Eir every day for her.
I went by the house the other day and there's an Ottawa Rental Properties sign on the front lawn. Should I get in touch with them to see the inside?
Thanks for your quick response to my message and also thanks for your concerned about my wife, may God be with your and your family as well. Once again thanks for your full interest in my house. God will heal your twin sister as well, I think it will be so foolish for a Man of God to cheat on you or get the money and Keys and Documents won't be send to you... As it was writing in the book of the Lord "What shall it profit a man to gain the whole world and loss his soul ".
Honestly! The House is currently locked up and i have the keys here with me, which no one had the spares over there, and i tried to email the only trustworthy, Mission friend i have in Ottawa, maybe the keys can be send to him, but he sent me an email back that he wasn't around at the moment, that he had left to Germany for 8 Months job training programme. When i come to think of it and put my legs in your shoes, i see that is too much risk or send money to the person you have not seen. But if you could trust me as i will be honest with you, do get back to me with the first month rent, then immediately i confirmed the payment i will get the Parcel send to you in the next 24hrs...
Meanwhile, you're to get back to me as soon as possible with the Applicant information's
Stay Bless !!!
Needless to say, the Amazing Flatmate did not send the "Applicant's information's." Instead, she sent this:
Thank you [name redacted]! Blessings to you too!
Rent in Ottawa Property Management still has their sign up on the lawn so could you send the key to them so I can see the inside? I have to know how much space there is. Or do you have other pictures and measurements of the rooms?
I'm specifically interested in the layout of the garage/workshop area and how I could set up my chicken and rabbit coops.
Thank you and may Eir visit you and your wife with her healing hands!
Thanks for your mail and I am very sorry for my late response to your message. In regards to your message I really want you to know that in my previous email I make you understand that the only trustworthy Mission friend i have is out Ottawa and I have no one there to represent or show you round the property. Meanwhile, I am not OK with sending out the Parcel to a Property Management you, if only you can make half payment of first month rent, then I will send out the Parcel to your address or wherever you want me to send it to and if you're not OK with this, I will advice you to look for another place.
Stay Bless !!!
Word to the wise, never send anyone trying to rent a property money ever without first a) having seen the place and thus certain you want to rent it, and b) checking to make sure they're legit. This guy clearly wasn't and isn't. His Craigslist ad has been removed, as the Amazing Flatmate had informed the actual renters of what was going on and they in turn contacted Craigslist.
Unfortunately, they did not offer us the house for a price we can afford and thus we are still looking for a new place to live. Le sigh. That house was really very sweet and absolutely perfect and now it is out of our reach forever. Unless I win the lotto... In which case I would just buy a house. In the country. With horses.
Anyway, that is the Saga of the Strange Scam. It amuses me, mostly because I have no qualms about screwing with people who are trying to screw over other people, and the Amazing Flatmate constantly cracks me up.
I'm off to continue with my Welsh lessons. Have a wonderful day and...
Stay Bless !!!