Real Estate Scam Hits Baton Rouge Area
Some people who listed their Baton Rouge real estate and homes for sale recently on an online classified advertising site, such as Craigslist or HotPads, found themselves victimized by unscrupulous con artists.
It is an unfortunate fact of life that there are diabolically selfish people in the world who will do just about anything to get money, regardless of who they might hurt, run over or destroy to get it.
It’s not just that these people do not care about how the repercussions of their actions are going to affect their victims. In fact, they are absolutely counting on many people to have a trusting or even naive nature.
A perfect example of this type of greedy mindset recently reared its ugly head for some homeowners in Baton Rouge, including the President of the Greater Baton Rouge Association of Realtors, Linda Gaspard.
These scammers have figured out how to gain access to ads and add their own text to them. Many of these contained a sentence in them that said something akin to, "I have decided to rent it out due to our transfer to West Africa for missionary work."
Safety in Anonymity
There are countless ways in which the relatively fast growth, expansion and innovation in communication technology has enriched our lives. So much so that most of us who are less than 40 years old probably cannot imagine what life must have been like before smart phones, personal computers and the Internet.
Because we entrust so much of the financial interworking and logistics of our daily lives to the cold, impersonal abyss of cyberspace and most of the time everything works out just fine, we can easily overlook some of the warning signs of scams that in hindsight appear to be glaringly obvious.
Some of the most common red flags to look for include:
- Terribly poor grammar
- Grossly overpriced property
- Grossly under priced property
- Any request for you to wire a monetary deposit
For most of us, the idea that we might be getting scammed doesn’t enter into our minds unless the same type of con has been run on us before or we begin noticing that things just don’t feel right.
So remember, do not give personal information to anyone over the Web unless you have absolute trust in the person or company to whom you are giving it. And, if you think you are being victimized by an online scam, your best recourse is to contact your local police or sheriff’s office.