My wife and I are looking for an apartment in San Francisco and I received this email from one "Jodie Foster" (firstname.lastname@example.org). "Jodie" has apparently been making the rounds and has apartments all over California. +234 is of course the country code for Nigeria. Count the number of ways that this letter looks like a scam:
Thanks for the email. My name is Jodie Foster the owner of the 1 Bedroom Apartment you are making enquiry of, I've had so many responses so far, however it is still available but I do have one person who is ahead of you. I'll rent it to whoever puts down the deposit .Rent includes water and garbage. My company sent me overseas and will probably be between Africa, India and the UK for another year or so. The last tenants I had just moved out and my family and friends all live on the east coast so I don't have anyone available to show the place but I can send you pictures of the inside but will have to ship you the keys and papers.
Here is the house address: 20th Avenue, San Francisco CA 94102...Ready for immediate move-in!You can drive down there to take a look at it...i will be willing to rent my Apartment out for the maximum of 5 years and below.I personally had wanted to sell the house earlier on.But after long time deliberation between me and my wife Elizabeth we finally agreed on renting out the Apartment, because it was initially to be sold. But I really want you to take good care of the house, as if it were your own Apartment.
I would want to know how soon you would want to move in, as I will be taking a 1 or 2 month upfront payment which mean the first and last months you will be staying in the house including some utilities (Water, Internet and Garbage). I am asking for $1400 For 2 month upfront payment Or $700 for 1 month upfront payment and I believe we should be able to help ourselves. including utilities because I want you to take a very good care of the house while I am away.
i will like you to go ahead and fill out the rent application form so that will can proceed further and discuss on how to get the the keys and papers sent to you via Dhl or ups e.t.c, also are you ready to rent it now or when?.So here is the Rent Application Form Below..
========= RENT APPLICATION FORM ============
PRIVATE & CONFIDENTIAL
Also,Pls answer these questions below:
1)Your Full Name______________________________________
2)Present Address(where you reside now) & Phone Number______________________________
3)How old are you _____________________________
4)Are you married ______________________________ _____
5)How many people will be living in the Apartment___________________________
6)Do you have a pet _________________________________________
7)Do you have a car __________________________________________
9)How long are you willing to stay _________________________________________
10)When do you intend to move in _________________________________________
11)1 month Or 2 month deposit needed ______________________________________
12) Pictures of all the Occupant that will stay in my Apartment______________________________________
I will use the information above to prepare the rental agreement , rent receipts and other documents. Make sure the correct information is type.Do reply with your both cell & house number i am going to call you if your application form has been accepted or call me after filling the rental application form. A package containing the housing documents, property address with full description. Including the direction to the place and keys will be ship to you once you both agreed with the term and condition. Call me once you fill out the application form.Here is my contact number: +2348071970151 or 0112348071970151....i will be expecting your call to know how serious you are in renting my Apartment
Thanks & God Bless
The original posting on Craig's List had been fairly innocuous, if priced far too low to be believable. I've flagged the post as "prohibited" and will have to go back and look to see if there is any better way of notifying Craig's List about a fraud suspect. Here is how the posts looks:
FOR RENT: Great little one bedroom apartment with hardwood floors, in a quiet building steps from the heart of the Irving Street shopping district, transportation, and Golden Gate Park. The unit's kitchen provides a refrigerator and stove/oven.
Here is a YouTube video posted by someone else who encountered the Nigerian rental scam (though I doubt if he scared the operator much).