Money has never been enough; even billionaires work every day to make more of it. Other people, however, prefer to get quick cash without breaking a sweat by scamming hard working citizens out of their hard-earned money. Such scammers are everywhere and use online channels for their get-rich-quick tactics on unsuspecting victims. One of the most used websites is Craigslist and Bellingham's residents have become prey to such criminals. People perish for lack of knowledge so before complying with a Craigslist Bellingham ad, get to know these scams prevalent on the craigslist adverts, and you might save yourself the pain of losing your money in a deal that seemed genuine.
1. Puppy scams
You might be looking for a four-legged friend to keep you company. However, you should be careful about buying over Craigslist since you could buy a sick animal that will end up dying in a few weeks. Such was the case in August 2018 when three people, Kamila Garcia, Elijzah Johnson, and Crystal Leeann were arrested for selling sick puppies on craigslist and mistreating the animals. The unsuspecting buyers bought the mixed-breed puppies thinking they were healthy. However, later on, some of the puppies fell sick, and one died from an infectious disease, which prompted the buyers to report the matter to police. Consequently, some of the puppies sold through the ad were tested and diagnosed with worms and parvovirus, which can be fatal since it does not have a cure. Investigations revealed that the three suspects were sourcing puppies from North Carolina and bringing them To Virginia for resale purposes. They were charged with obtaining money by pretense on August 31, 2018. According to a report by Better Business Bureau, such puppy scams can be avoided if the buyer meets the seller in person.
2. Rental house scams
Property management firms and real estate agencies have observed an increase in the rental houses scam. People fall victim since the scammer usually has all the information such as the photo of the property and any other information that makes the sale seem legit. Most scammers do not go as far as renting out the house, they ask for application fees from all prospective tenants, which accumulates into a handsome amount. Alternatively, they may request that you pay a deposit so that they hold the rental for you. However, one can tell if the ad is a scam usually by the poor grammar and the low prices that are generally below market value. Also, if viewing the property and the person letting it says the owners are out of the country, then that should be a warning sign that you are walking into a scam.
3. Tool buying scam
Sometimes, even sellers get scammed by people pretending to be buying tools from them. For instance, one person posted an ad selling his Shopsmith for $600. He thought he had landed an honest buyer when the man claimed to be God fearing and he would send him extra money amounting to $2370.30 through a check. The extra money was for the seller to help in facilitating the moving of other tools that the buyer was supposedly purchasing, an act which the buyer showed gratitude for by telling the seller to take $50. The check arrived, and upon taking it to the bank, the seller received a warning that the check might have been stolen. Since the seller had the buyer's contact after exchanging a few emails and text messages, when he informed the buyer that the bank had declined the check, he did not respond.
4. Selling of stolen goods
Most of the times, easy money comes from stealing, but when thieves cannot get cash, they prefer stealing an item and selling it soonest possible. Such was the case with David Jordan McDonough and Jeremy Randall Schuitema. They stole a bike and advertised it for sale on Craigslist where the owner saw it and reported the matter to police. The investigation police found the woman's description of the bike matching the photo of the bike in the ad. David and Jeremy were to sell the bike for $1,500, but fortunately, they got arrested.
5. Job scams
The fact that so many are unemployed has seen them fall into the trap of job scams. For instance, some adverts claim to pay a handsome salary, like $5000 per month for a part-time job but first, you have to undergo training, and your compensation will be commission-based.
Written by Garrett Parker
Read more posts by Garrett Parker