I don't know if it ever completely went away, but rental scams seem to be back in the picture here in the Berkshires. Years ago I was looking for a house to rent and responded to an ad, they had a picture of the home on a nice street in North Adams.

So I contacted the landlord of said property and knew something was up when I asked to look at the home, The man told me that he was out of town and would need a deposit before I would be able to see the home.  Well, the red lights started flashing on this, I knew something was not right at all.

Turned out it was a scam and there were even more people trying to do this to other renters.  I answered a few more messages on houses for rent and the same scenario played out at least three more times for me.

The reason I am bringing this up is I have noticed on Facebook lately people are going through this again and one of the reasons the scammers are heating up again in the Berkshires is the lack of rentals. Also, landlords right now seem to be charging a lot more rent for a home that is not worth the price.

There are some things you should look out for when trying to rent a place to help you know if it was a scam or not.  One thing I took away from my experience is that the landlord or owner did not want to meet me, but wanted the money upfront. That Is a super bad sign.

They want to get the deal done as fast as they can. They want to get your money as fast as possible and not show you even virtually what the home looks like inside. A big one to pick up on is the offer seems too good to be true, it probably is especially when it comes to price.

I guess the best thing to say is renter beware.

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