Wednesday, July 15, 2009 Rental Property Connections

Hello everyone, welcome back.

I apologize for being away for several days but I was completing interviews, panel interviews, and telephone interviews for a position I was interested in very much but unfortunately or fortunately, I didn't actually get the job.

I found that out yesterday. While I am a little disappointed I didn't meet the "personality standards" that were being checked by the panel interview, I realize I can't be anything more than honest to myself and give the outward appearance of honesty and integrity.

If the panel interviewers found that to not be a match to a model employee they seek, so be it. I just have to be me and keep my own personality rather than pretend to buy into the one they are apparently searching for in this position.

I was certainly looking for places to live also during this time which was also a little bit frustrating on my parent's computer. My dad had originally had high speed internet at a cost of $19.95 and then suddenly decided he didn't want to pay that much for high speed internet and canceled the service.

He then decided about a week later that he wanted access to the internet since he enjoys the news and has very little news of national of world interest on over the air broadcast television.

So he goes back and installs one of the dial up providers software but can't connect to the modems of this provider for some reason.

I should also say he has a Mac instead of a windows based PC which I admit makes things rather difficult trying to get things to work and configure properly.

After some troubleshooting, I found out the reasons for his problems with dial up using the software on a Mac computer. I was able to get him dialed into the service but the speeds very much pale in comparison to faster internet service.

Which brings me to my next point, (I really do have one after all that blather) is beware of most CraigsList advertisements either for jobs or rental property. My commentators regarding CraigsList job ads that aren't really job ads continue to be welcome, but I must state CL for the most part isn't an ideal place to look for an apartment either.

I know there are certainly some honest people out there posting rental property for rent and sale but there are still what appear to be strong scams out there looking to bilk people out of personal information for no reason whatsoever.

I read an advertisement including wonderful pictures for an apartment for rent that seemed quite legitimate and supposedly in a nice area of town but for some reason the person advertising the rental unit didn't say where in Pensacola the apartment was located.

Usually this is my first concern when looking at a potential apartment for rent. I don't want to be living in a crime ridden area nor do I want to have my morning and afternoon commute for work tied up in extreme traffic zones where work is on one side of town and home is completely on the other far distant side of town.

I would provide an online link to the property described but someone thankfully has flagged it as not a real location for rent.

So in this case, I simply email the person who is using an email address of something like for any inquiries. No telephone number or real name in the rental listing.

I simply in this case asked the individual at the email address that I'm interested in learning more about the rental property. I ask if the person would tell me where this rental unit is located. I include a link from Craigslist for that particular advertisement in the email I send back and give my full name and telephone number.

Later, in a few short hours I receive an email like below, using bold text for emphasis:

Anna Brooks Wed, Jul 15, 2009 at 1:02 AM
Reply | Reply to all | Forward | Print | Delete | Show original
Hi and thank you for your interest,

My inbox was flooded yesterday with inquiries so I'll do my best to answer some of the questions:

1) Cable, wireless internet, heat, water, and electricity are included in the monthly rental fee.

2) The security deposit amount depends on your credit score.

3) Move-in can begin as early as next month.

4) I haven't gotten around to taking more pictures yet but I will be taking groups of interested parties for showings later this week.

Due to the overwhelming response I've included a preliminary rental application for any interested parties. I only want to converse with people who are serious about actually moving into this property. So if you are interested in a showing and further information, please fill out the attached application and email it to me so that I can get back to you soon.

I've attached the application. Please reply with the application
or copy and paste the answers onto the reply email.

This will be given on a first-come-first-serve basis. This is the last unit I have unfortunately.

I look forward to hearing from you,
Anna Brooks

Okay, I'm back again now. Notice there's nothing in the email answering my only question regarding the actual location of the rental unit.

Also funny this alleged individual with the attachment asks you to complete a request for a credit score on the application with a company they only trust,

Sure this company supposedly offers you a free credit report. But it also appears to sell a service that will supposedly help fix problems and errors on your credit report.

I just wouldn't do it. Besides, if a landlord really had property for rent, I'd tend to think this individual would pull their own credit report or rental history in some other manner rather than asking you to enter a credit score.

Notice this comment:

Our ability to rent and the amount of deposit we charge is determined by your credit report. We will only speak to renters with a credit report from My Credit Score because we have seen many fraudulent reports. This is a well known company and should garner some trust.

Just interesting mind you. I decided to delete the full reply of the email because I know for sure there's no rental property. It's just some "person" trying to sell a credit repair service.

Just another one of the many scams out there on the internet for unsuspecting individuals.

Be careful as always everyone...thanks for stopping by.


Starry K said...

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!! I had sent an email to "Anna Brooks" about an apartment in Denver, CO. After printing out the "rental application," I noticed what was written almost like an ad to get my free credit score. That seemed fishy so I did a quick search on the service, I found your blog ...

and you received the EXACT SAME email I did.

Thanks you for posting!I'm going to flag the ad and post a warning.

Anonymous said...

I definitely agree!! Thanks for posting this! I got the EXACT reply from "anna brooks" about a property in downtown Miami that seemed really really nice with cable, internet, and all utilities included for $535 which is just too good to be true for Miami. i googled her name and thank God your ad came up in the results warning me!

Anonymous said...

Great work detectives! Thanks for posting!! I got the same email scam in Nashville, TN. When i heard that ALL utilities were included in that VERY low price, I was thinking that this must be a scam. I looked up "Anna Brooks Properties" online and saw your blog. So glad you've shared!!! I'll be posting a link to your blog comments about "Anna Brooks" on the Nashville Craigslist site to help others avoid the scam. Thanks again!

Anonymous said...

I had a suspicion about this also and pulled the whois record on the email URL. It came up as being registered nov 13th, 09 - about two weeks ago.

I then googled some of the info and found this post.

Thanks so much for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Me too from Daytona Beach craigslist rental listing. Dirty little bird!! I saw a post $650 for a 1250sf house in a new subdivision. I Googled the neighborhood for sales and found word for word the realtor's listing in this person's CL post. They told me they'd have to conduct the app & security by mail. Yeah right buddy! I hope nobody fell for that.

Anonymous said...

Glad I googled! I got this same email response to a craigslist ad in Fort Collins, CO. It's a shame it's a fake, the pictures were nice.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much. apparently she is also running this scam in michigan as well! I emailed today about a listing I saw. after receiving the reply email with the attached rental app it struck me as odd. I have rented numerous times in the past and have never been asked to fill out a rental application BEFORE seeing the property! so I decided to google Anna Brooks Properties and found you blog! Thank you again!

Downtown Foodie of Richmond said...

Wow! I've gotten many of these, too. I'm also in Miami and was looking for Downtown area housing. Never ever give your personal information,regardless of what the people say, without handing it to someone in person. This whole thing had suspicious written all over it...right from the beginning with the fact that there's no phone number and when I provided mine they did not call. Plus, it took over 4 days for an email response...clearly no one who wants to rent a unit will take that long. Thanks for sharing!

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