Feb 26, 2014 7:08 PM by MELISSA CANONE
A local real estate broker is alerting the public of a rental scam on Craigslist that is targeting Acadiana.
Over the past few weeks, Acadiana Metro Realty in Lafayette has experienced a large number of calls from concerned citizens about local real estate being listed for rent on Craigslist.
Although many of the properties listed are legitimate, a growing number are actually local homes that are listed for sale and scammers have taken information about those properties and are advertising them for rent, according to Flint Zerangue of Acadiana Metro Realty.
When unsuspecting renters contact these scammers, they are asked a series of questions which makes the potential renter feel as though they are actually filling out a rental application. Then, 1 or 2 emails, texts or calls later, the would be renter is told they have been approved to move in as soon as they send the first months rent and deposit to the supposed homeowner who (of course) lives out of town. The potential renter usually never sees their money again or ever gains access to the supposed rental property, stated Zerangue.
Zerangue stated, his firm has been in communication with the Lafayette Parish Sheriff's Office who is looking into these recent events.
Click here to read 'How to Avoid a Craigslist Rental Scam' on the AOL Real Estate website.