Scammers prey on unsuspecting renters


Looking to rent a home in Aberdeen? Make sure you know who you’re renting from.

Aberdeen Police Department officials are warning Harborites to be on the lookout for a local rental scam. A local rental property manager filed a complaint with the department, stating that an unknown person has been advertising an Aberdeen rental home on Craigslist — even though they don’t own the home or have the authority to rent it, according to a press release from the department.

The fraudulent listing provided an email address for a contact regarding the property. But when contacted by a potential renter, whoever replied claimed to be in Africa on a mission, then emailed a rental contract to the potential renter to fill out and return.

When the potential renter asked to see the house, they were told via email that the owner had also gone to Africa with the house keys.

Captain John Green, a spokesman for the Aberdeen Police Department, said the scam was likely an attempt to steal $900 from potential renters. Consumer scam protection information may be found on Craigslist and at the Federal Trade Commission website, www.ftc.gov.