8 Replies Latest reply: Sep 17, 2012 3:25 PM by anja RSS

    Wasilla AK scam

    New Member

      I never thought I'd be writing this after owning and renting for 10 years. I got a rental inquiry from a Jeff Hammond of Wasilla, AK. It had typical poor English grammer and fit the scam profile I've been reading about. I thought I'd play along and sent him a rental contract. I got the following e-mail today. The address he gave me is that of a Todel Palin in Wasilla. The phone number is from Dallas. I think you see the big picture. Be careful who you deal with. If they don't answer the phone and speak with you it's a red flag.

       

       

      How are you doing ? I just recieved a confirmation that the check payment for the rent has been issued on your name and mailed out to your address, So keep an eye for it.There was a mixed up before the check was mailed out. I would like you to help me out with the rental fee and my travel expense allowance was included in the check that was sent to you.  take out the rental fee and send the remaining balance less western union charges to my car rental company to enable them secure my car rental booking ready for our use when we get to the unit . Finally, let me know when you get the check, I am very sorry for the inconvenience caused for you sending the money down to the Car Rental Company. Do you know any western union outlet close to you or money gram ?

      Best Regards

      Jeff Hammond


      Jeff Hammond
      jeffham85@aol.com


        • Re: Wasilla AK scam
          twobitrentals Community All-Star

          Wow....sad!

          • Re: Wasilla AK scam
            New Member

            Had almost identical request.....just different renter name/address, but "keep an eye for it", etc and request to send refund minus my rental amount.  BUT, they sent a check and now i'm sitting here with probably a worthless check.  Should I send it back to the company who issued it (probably bogus) or what now?  Don't want to take a chance on depositing and exposing my bank account to them.  Just want out.....think I will just send a cancellation notice and indicate property is not available.  Any other thoughts?

              • Re: Wasilla AK scam
                New Member

                I live in Plymouth Minnesota and a friend of mine has a son on the police 

                dept.. He had a detective call me this morning and he said just to hang on

                to  the check and have no further communication with them. The check is no

                good so  don't cash it. I was reading a woman's blog who said she cashed the

                check and  wired the excess funds. She is out thousand's of dollars plus the

                bank charges  for a bounced check. I will not rent to anybody I can't talk

                to first. The  crooks don't want to talk, just take your money. So my advice

                is to sit tight  and it will more than likely just die. Don

                  • Re: Wasilla AK scam
                    anja Senior Contributor

                    Hi ddjanderson,

                     

                    I'm glad that you weren't harmed by this scam.

                     

                    For the record....

                    Be very aware:  some crooks do a good job of scamming over the telephone pretending to be the property owner. They carry their scam very far...sometimes speaking several times with their victim  in particular with phishing scenarios. Use "Search For Answers:" above for "phishing".

                • Re: Wasilla AK scam
                  stjvilla Active Contributor

                  Remember folks, if anyone tells you they sent you too much money and want you to send them the difference, it is a scam.  End of story!

                    • Re: Wasilla AK scam
                      anja Senior Contributor

                      That's right.

                       

                      This scam is so "old" for some owners, by now.   *Delete*!

                       

                      But, there are so many new owners and owners that are just unaware. They haven't yet seen the,  "I...paid too much" email in their inbox.  And, they are not aware of this Community Forum where they can get details. 

                        • Re: Wasilla AK scam
                          msdebj Senior Contributor

                          I'm with Anja. I'd love to see VRBO/HA offer tutorials to NEW owners entering the VR business regarding scams such as this. ( maybe they do). There should be a BIG flag that directs new VR owners to read basic info- like in the old VRBO days, before they advertise.

                           

                          These are old type scams (this 1 is almost too funny). I'd never have given my contract or mailing address to such an obvious scammer, but I think I get the reason why ddjanderson did...

                           

                          I used VRBO's information ( back then we had Karpisnki's info) before I ever put a contract together, etc. After educating myself as well as I could, only THEN did I buy advertsing on any site.   I think it took me about 4 months before I ever felt comfortable enough to have my ducks in a row and do my 1st rental.

                           

                          I always shudder when I see owners new to the process post questions in the Community about problems that come from no contract, or a standard down loaded one.

                           

                          Love this Community to help address issues. I just wish there was a way to get to the New folks before they make big mistakes.

                          Deb J 

                            • Re: Wasilla AK scam
                              anja Senior Contributor

                              Yes...a prominent button e.g.:  Don't Be Scammed!  on the index pages of every HA-owned website would be helpful  clicking into --->  a tutorial, as you suggested...and it would be nice for it to be set up as video tutorial  to watch what "to watch out for"...with a sample of the typical "....paid too much  /  Ukraine scenario" .

                               

                              Links to the relevant HA advisory "blogs", to be included.