September 9, 2008

APARTMENT HUNTING in PARIS big SCAMS out there!

I am writing this post to get an important warning out there for anyone and everyone who is looking to rent an apartment in Paris... Awhile back I posted about a big apartment scam on Craig's list Paris but there seems to be other really bad scams out there, as well, that don't involve Craig's list.  Please take caution because this just happened to a friend of mine and it involves a huge chunk of money that was lost, not to mention the disappointment of NOT getting the apartment that she believed she was renting.  Plus the sheer anger and frustration of being scammed.  I have a link to an article in French, so if you read French, please see the article here.  If not, here is a rough summary of what it is about... 

Apartment SCAM in Paris - subletting an apt. in Paris seems to be the big thing right now...
If you sublet an apartment from someone you have  virtually NO recourse if you are
scammed. The scammers are very thorough and come equipped with false
contracts, false copies of their identity- (i.e. copies of passport, edf receipts, id. cards..)
They ask for cash for the first month- usually over 1000 euros... and give you keys
to an apt. they have shown to you, that happens to already be rented but the person is out of town and the scammers have somehow gotten ahold of their keys. 
The scammers rent the same apt. to multiple people, so they really make out good.. And, when you go to the police to file a report, the police basically tell you there is nothing they can
do... PLEASE warn people about this scam... My friend lost a big sum of money from
this scam about 2 weeks ago... Get the word out!!

8 comments:

debi_in_Hawaii said...

That scam is everywhere, here too.
Any free service like that is bound to have sleaze and frauds abusing it. Anything from spambots out to get your email, to phishing scams out to get your address and bank info.
And it's not just craigslist, because when I was trying to sell my Firebird through a local classified, it got posted on their online version, and I got one of those "I'm in the U.K. and will send a cashier's check through a shipping agent" B.S. email. I knew it was bogus.
Stay safe everyone!

David said...

Remember that subletting and subleasing is illegal in France and that you do it at your own risk...
But I'm fully aware (from experience) that in Paris it's very often the only way to get an apartment...

And as much as the craigslist scam that you mentioned the other day was lame and easy to spot, this one is definitely not.

One thing though: never pay cash unless you know and trust the person.

Deb said...

How frustrating! If all of the people who come up with these scams would put their energies into postive projects the world would be a much better place to live. It is a shame that at times it feels as if there are few people who we can truly trust. Thanks for spreading the word.

La Belette Rouge said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
La Bellette Rouge said...

I just heard about this happening to ------. So horrible!! Thanks for getting the work out. Agencies are the way to go in Paris.

Giggle! said...

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So welcome to my blogroll! Heeeheee!

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Ron said...

OMG...I've never heard of such a thing, Leesa!

That's horrible!

I mean, all that effort put forth to rip someone off...

jeees!

Even in New York City, where it's pretty ROUGH...I don't think I've ever heard of this happening.

And good for you, for posting this!!!

Bravo!

Leesa said...

Hi Everyone--- Thanks for your comments...
Apparament, this happens EVERYWHERE but it just really sucks that people get suckered into this awful scam, even people who are aware that there are scams out there and are trying to be careful.....