For many renters who have opted to rent home instead of buying in Knoxville, Craiglist is a common place to look for rentals. Unfortunately, for some Knoxville renters, Craiglist has its fair share of scammers. If you’re looking to find a rental property in Knoxville, here is how to avoid a Knoxville rental scam on Craigslist.
First, if the Knoxville rental sounds too good to be true, it just might be, and you should be leery. This is particularly true if the listing lacks very specific details about the property. It may have a fluffy description like this: three bedrooms, 3 baths, totally renovated, tons of space, fenced backyard, huge kitchen, all for $700. Yet, if it lacks specific details like the location, address, and pictures, this should raise suspicion. If a Knoxville rental really is all that fabulous, wouldn’t they want to show it off with some pictures? While this doesn’t necessarily signify a Craiglist scam, you shouldn’t believe anything until you see if yourself.
Another cause for concern should be lack of contact information for the person that posted the listing. If the only means of contacting the owner of the listing is via the generic listing email, you should proceed with caution. You should be extremely concerned if the only means of contacting the owner of the listing is only via email. Particularly, if the email is not one located in the United States or just seems off (i.e. includes a whole string on consonants and an unpronounceable name). Prior to sending any money, you should at least be able to preview the property and talk to the owner of the property on the phone. Even after that, if the owner gives you a strange vibe, the rental may just not be for you.
In addition, if the owner of a Craigslist ad asks for money or a credit check prior to you viewing the Knoxville rental property, you should run in the opposite direction. While credit checks and deposits are typical with renting a property in Knoxville, you should not have to give any of this information prior to agreeing to rent the property.
Finally, if a Craiglist ad for a Knoxville rental property still seems off, don’t hesitate to do a bit of research of your own. If you’re given the property address, you should be able to pull up the county tax records to verify the owner the the Craiglist ad matches the owner of the property. A simple Google search will also reveal if the home is listed for sale. Unfortunately, many scammers will take the addresses of homes listed for sale. And finally, trust your gut, if something seems off, it very likely is, and there will be other Knoxville rental properties.
Are you debating whether to rent or buy in Knoxville this year? If there is any way that Knoxville Home Team can assist you, please do not hesitate to contact us. Rick can be reached at 865-696-9002 or via email at [email protected]. Kati can be reached at [email protected] or at 865-392-5880.