Realtor warns of Craigslist scam concerning local home - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Realtor warns of Craigslist scam concerning local home

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -

Imagine finding a $259,000 house in a great neighborhood to rent for only $700 a month. That was ad on Craigslist this week, but it turns out it was a scam.

Realtor Marilyn Boudreaux had just listed the house in south Lake Charles for $259,000. She soon received an inquiry from a young couple who wanted to see it and they met at the house for a showing. It was when the interested party made reference to the price, Boudreaux realized there was a problem.

"The gentleman said, 'I find it really hard to believe, this is such a nice house, that it's for rent for $700.' And I said, 'Oh you must be mistaken, it isn't for rent. This home is for sale. This is a $259,000 house," said Boudreaux.

Turns out the young couple had seen the house advertised for rent on Craigslist.

"I said, 'I am very, very sorry but that is a scam.' I said that is not our listing, I did not put it on Craigslist," explained Boudreaux.

Soon the realtor's phone was blowing up with inquiries and other realtors who could see it was a scam.

"There is not a house in south Lake Charles for rent for $700, especially in this neighborhood," she said.

Those who responded directly to the ad on Craigslist received an email from someone pretending to be the owner, claiming the family was on a mission trip in Africa. The letter asked for a lot of personal information such as marital status, even a family picture, and whether they'd be willing to send money before the move-in date so that keys can be express delivered.

"They're not getting keys, people live in this house," said Boudreaux, "That's part of the scam, if you buy into it and you send them any money, you're never going to see that money again. There are no keys and documents to be exchanged."

The homeowners were alarmed to find, the ad brought those interested in renting to visit their home and explore the grounds without permission.

"The neighbors actually saw people coming and going all day long, that were not with realtors. The sellers, thank goodness, had a video surveillance in place. When they got home they could watch all this on tape," she said.

Boudreaux said it shows the importance of dealing with real estate or property management professionals.

"We see into it and can read through the ad and see several different red flags go up and be able to tell the person, 'No that's a scam,'"she said.

As convenient as it can be to do business online, visiting an established business can help assure a consumer is not being scammed.

Boudreaux said the ad has been removed from Craigslist since she contacted the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office.

She said deputies are doing extra patrols near the house.

Copyright 2017 KPLC All rights reserved

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Sunrise birthdays: April 25, 2018

    Wednesday, April 25 2018 8:08 AM EDT2018-04-25 12:08:06 GMT

    Happy birthday to our Sunrise birthdays for April 25: Johana Clophus, 11 Alexander Dowden, 6 Herman Reed, 70 Teagan-Dakota, 2 If you want your birthdays featured on 7News Sunrise, send your pictures at least five days in advance to birthdays@kplctv.com. Please include the name, age and date of birth. Copyright 2018 KPLC. All rights reserved.

    More >>

    Happy birthday to our Sunrise birthdays for April 25: Johana Clophus, 11 Alexander Dowden, 6 Herman Reed, 70 Teagan-Dakota, 2 If you want your birthdays featured on 7News Sunrise, send your pictures at least five days in advance to birthdays@kplctv.com. Please include the name, age and date of birth. Copyright 2018 KPLC. All rights reserved.

    More >>
  • Dreams Come True helps children with life-threatening illnesses.

    Dreams Come True helps children with life-threatening illnesses.

    Wednesday, April 25 2018 6:53 AM EDT2018-04-25 10:53:03 GMT
    (Source: KPLC)(Source: KPLC)
    (Source: KPLC)(Source: KPLC)
    Dreams Come True is a nonprofit that was founded to help provide dreams to children facing life-threatening illnesses. Their mission is to restore the beauty found in the dreams of children by providing happiness, support, and encouragement to children and their families. Founded in 1982 in Denham Springs, Louisiana, Dreams Come True is a mostly volunteer-based organization. They are now able to grant around 50 to 60 wishes every year throughout the state. If you would like to lea...More >>
    Dreams Come True is a nonprofit that was founded to help provide dreams to children facing life-threatening illnesses. Their mission is to restore the beauty found in the dreams of children by providing happiness, support, and encouragement to children and their families. Founded in 1982 in Denham Springs, Louisiana, Dreams Come True is a mostly volunteer-based organization. They are now able to grant around 50 to 60 wishes every year throughout the state. If you would like to lea...More >>
  • Former longtime Starks volunteer fire chief speaks out

    Former longtime Starks volunteer fire chief speaks out

    Tuesday, April 24 2018 11:34 PM EDT2018-04-25 03:34:14 GMT
    (Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC(Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC
    (Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC(Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC
    Many in the Starks community have been trying to figure out why longtime volunteer fire chief Corey Blanchard resigned weeks ago.  "I got asked numerous times why we are not hearing your side," Blanchard said.  But now, we are hearing his side. The former Starks volunteer fire chief decided to speak up after rumors began swirling online. "Stealing money... I have no access to money, have not had access to money," he said. "It was put out...More >>
    Many in the Starks community have been trying to figure out why longtime volunteer fire chief Corey Blanchard resigned weeks ago.  "I got asked numerous times why we are not hearing your side," Blanchard said.  But now, we are hearing his side. The former Starks volunteer fire chief decided to speak up after rumors began swirling online. "Stealing money... I have no access to money, have not had access to money," he said. "It was put out...More >>
Powered by Frankly