It's probably not the "latest" but it has happened here to sellers of mine. Be careful of this scam when you have your home listed for sale OR when looking for rentals online.
I have a regular sale property listed in which the owners are occupying the home. They called to tell me that activity via people driving by and picking up fliers was soaring. And then the phone calls started.... call after call came into my cell phone with inquiries on this property. Finally a couple diligent people helped me figure out what was going on....
Apparently someone FALSELY listed this home for lease on ListHub, Military.com, Hotpads, and other sites. The person(s) responsible used the legal owners name.. which is public information since it is on title. They even created a false Yahoo email address with her name in it! They took all of my information from the MLS, as far as property photos and property description.
There was a contact owner link and then once you did.. this is the email you'd get back;
I am very pleased that you wrote concerning our home in ___(property address)___, Anaheim, CA 92807.The house needs no amendment as you can see for yourself in the pictures. I have been receiving a lot of comment on my home but that is not the point because all I wanted is a lovely family that will see my home as theirs and also keep it clean for us as we have always done. I must let you know that the utilities are inclusive with the month rent and the reason why we are not asking for too much was because we want any person or family moving into our home should take absolute care of the utilities and see that the whole house is kept clean and neat. Well I must let you know that if we see how good you take care of our home, we can extend your stay in our home and probably pay you visit once in every three month to ensure that we maintain a good relationship with you and the rest. If I see how good you are maintaining the house, I can extend you staying as long as you can stay. The rent is $1,500 and security deposit is $1,000
As you can see we are not around to show you our home but all is in place to allow you move in at your own convenient time, I will be sending you the entrance keys and the duplicated copy of the house document for you to go through but you can drive by the house to see the surrounding yourself. If all arrangement is made promptly. I will send you a Rental Application form today as soon as you get back to us through email.
I've flagged this as scam on all sites that I've been alerted too. I've notified my sellers and they've put a hold on the credit. AND I've alerted the buyers so that when we close this transaction they can change locks....
I truly hope NO ONE has sent this person(s) money or the deposit :( It is truly heartbreaking if they did.
So if it sounds to good to be true.... it is! Trust your instinct and I hope this doesn't happen to you!
At your service,