Authorities warn of property rental scams on social media

Sheriff’s deputies are warning of a rental property scam that is popping up on social media. They say that you can get ripped off through Facebook Marketplace if you find a rental property listed at well below market value.

Scammers will find an ad with a property renting for say $2,000 a month, and then relist the same information at a much lower cost.

The Better Business Bureau says the scammers want you to act quickly to catch the deal before someone else does. The goal is to get you to pay the security deposit and rent to the scammer online, without a real lease or ability to move into the property. They will frequently ask you to wire the money and claim that they can’t meet you in person because they are out of town. They will promise to mail you the key after receiving the money, but no key ever arrives and you are out the cash.

Johnson County deputies say you should protect yourself by confirming who actually owns the property before providing personal information or money. Legitimate companies will require some sort of contract. You should contact the company directly to confirm that it is legitimate.