In search of that ever-elusive cheap San Francisco rent, I dove deep into the world of phony Craigslist apartment .
What more could you possibly want, aside from a computer free of malware and a social security not for sale on the dark web? These types of definitely-fake apartment listings are just one of the many things that make house hunting in San Francisco one of the most nightmarish parts of living in the city.
As someone who is currently in the process of relocating hmu if you have a large room and love Shih Tzusscouring Craigslist and Facebook housing groups has become my new part-time job. Like everyone, I want an uncommon deal, and with the pandemic there are plenty to be had.
A flood of cheap furnished rooms with mid-century-ish nightstands imply a rush of Airbnb Lords quitting the STR game.
But most of all, I see scams. By my unscientific count, 16 out of listings on the first of shared rooms on Craigslist San Francisco looked fraudulent. Shockingly enough, they do actually work.
According to data from Apartment List5. Typically that payment is requested by super shady means, ranging from old fashioned money order to cryptocurrency to iTunes gift cards.
The popularity of Venmo and Cash App makes these scams even more dangerous. So naturally, for the sake of journalism and the promise of deliciously cheap rent, I decided to take the bait. Over and over and over.
To see if I should have even an ounce of hope, first I contacted a couple of apartment locators from J Wavro Associates to get their professional opinion on my chances of finding a diamond in the rough. Out to prove them wrong, I waded through an endless list of fake that all looked pretty similar.
Single, aside from my Australian cattle dog, Rocky 35lbs. Another breed of scammer tries to take the conversation to text message.
It was such a curious technique that my finger actually hovered over the link for a moment. Whoops, I meant Still not working? I have cash!
But all I found was a whole lot of spam. The legitimate half of my apartment hunt was genuinely enlightening though. And in the end, I found a very attractive rent-controlled room on Haight St. It looks like a done deal as long as my little Shih Tzu Peanut has a successful playdate tomorrow with a shy mutt named Roubey.
Dan Gentile is the culture editor at SFGate. : Dan. Gentile sfgate.
A typical example of a fake Craigslist apartment ad. Craigslist These types of definitely-fake apartment listings are just one of the many things that make house hunting in San Francisco one of the most nightmarish parts of living in the city.
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