Beware – Rental Scams Continue In Grand Junction
There's another report of a scam going on in Grand Junction, and it's not the first of it's kind. Anyone who is looking to rent a house in the Grand Junction area should be aware. Here' s basically how the scam works.
A listener, "Sally" called us to tell her story. She has just closed on a house, and was in the process of moving in when she noticed a high volume of traffic on the cul de sac. Turns out people were checking out her house in response to an ad they had seen on the Internet or in print that the house was for rent -which it wasn't.
Sally encountered a young lady who proceeded to tell her that she had seen the property advertised on renters.com and had been communicating via email with the supposed owners out of Florida. The young lady said she had signed a rental agreement and was about to send them a $400 deposit and first month's rent. although she had never been inside the house.
The young lady showed Sally the emails, and Sally says they were not professional at all with very poor grammar. The email stated they would be sending the keys in the mail when they received the money for the deposit and rent.
The process had scam written all over it, but unsuspecting renters are apparently falling for it. This isn't the first time that we have heard of an incident like this in Grand Junction.
If you are looking for a place to rent, the main thing you can do to protect yourself from a scam like this is to never sign an agreement or pay any money before you have been inside the property to physically inspect it personally. A legitimate property owner is going to be able to get you in to see the house before any business is transacted. If they seem reluctant to do this you would be well-advised to back off.
These scammers apparently target houses that are on the market and are probably sitting vacant.