Room for Rent and other rental scams
#387364 by Michelle Mon Jun 03, 2019 2:19 pm
gustavh <[email protected]>:

Hi again,

My wife is the legal owner of the apartment, so the contract will be done directly with the owner without any extra fees or intermediary parties and can be rented for any period, city registration (Anmeldung) is also possible. In my opinion the apartment location nice and safe with shops and everything you need within walking distance. The monthly rent includes electricity, heat and water. Wifi and TV are paid by the renter, parking is also available by request. If you prefer to use your own furniture there is a storage unit where I can deposit my furniture before you move in. If you do not plan to move immediately (you have a notice at your current apartment), I will reserve the apartment for you, with the condition to meet and sign a contract. The apartment was bought for our daughter, she lived in the apartment until the end of January when she moved in United States with her job. We, my wife and I, live in Sweden, we are both over 60 and retired. We received several requests from persons who wanted to move in in August/September or were looking for someone else, so it's understandable that before we come to Germany to show you the apartment in person, we need to be sure that the any potential renter has the financial ability to cover the rent and utilities each month and has serious intentions. To do that I'm asking you to arrange a money transfer to YOUR name, as follows:

You find the closest Western Union office (Western Union is an international money transfer service) and ask a relative or friend to go to that location and transfer 710 EURO representing 1 months rent + kaution, from his name to yours using the service for friends and family called "money in minutes". After the transfer is done, you send me a copy of the Western Union receipt and Il verify the transfer online with the transfer code and the sender's / receiver's name. After that we set a date for our meeting/apartment inspection, I book a plane ticket and send you the copy.

Please note:
- By arranging a transfer from your relative/friend's name to yours, you are NOT agreeing to rent the apartment, this is NOT and advance payment of any sort, the money are sent to YOUR NAME, and ONLY YOU can withdraw money from the western union, with your ID. The contract will be signed ONLY after we meet and you inspect the apartment.
- Because recommendations, Schufa/Bank statements and locked accounts can not be verified online in real time (they are just copies that can be tampered with) I will NOT agree to set up meeting before I can verify the transfer as I described in this email, trough western union. If you are not familiar with the Western Union service, I can provide you with more information.

Please read this email in full and take the rental conditions in consideration, if you do not agree, I wish you good luck finding another apartment.
Thank you


gustavh <[email protected]>

By paying you are not committing to anything, YOU ARE NOT SENDING THE MONEY TO ME, you just ask a friend to send money from his name to YOUR name. You are in total control of your cash and only YOU can take the cash out only with your ID - the money are sent to your name. We dont need a shufa, bank statement or a print screen with a locked account. I trusted the persons who were supposed to rent the apartment at my last meeting, they also sent me warranties or whatever and I lost time and money. Sending me a bank statement does not assure me that you want to rent the apartment, sending money as I requested does.

Sending money trough Western Union it's very easy. You need to locate the nearest money western union here: www.westernunion.com/locations
Then ask a friend/relative to go to that location with cash money and a valid id (passport if his/her id is not from EU) and transfer the amount from his/her name to your name and your current address from Germany (if the transfer is international, the country that the money are sent to is Germany. The service used it's for family and friends (Called: Money In Minutes) and a fee will be 30-50 euro - I will refund the fee even if you dont rent the apartment when we meet. After the money are sent you will receive a receipt. You must send the receipt by reply to this email. I will check the transfer online using the transfer code, your name and the receiver name, we set a meeting date, and after you inspect the apartment in person and decide to sign the contract, we both go to the Western Union location nearest to the apartment and you get the money with your id.


Before we set a date for our meeting, the money transfer must be confirmed as I requested. I want to be 100% sure that I am not traveling to the apartment address for nothing (it's a 9-10 hours drive) and that you have the money ready to pay the rent. Last time i lost 2 days for nothing, i was supposed to meet with 3 potential tenants,and they gave me ridiculous reasons for not renting it. Obviously they were just browsing and not really interested. I always try to keep and open mind but this time I wan to be sure that at least you have money for the rent. I want a responsible person that is willing take good care of my place, hopefully you will be that person. I am trying to be as transparent as I can and I think that my request is reasonable.


Let me know when you are ready to proceed.


This person asks for a deposit payment via Western Union, MoneyGram or bank transfer with a promise that you can have the keys to a property that does not belong to him.

Sounds safe. It's not!

At other times, he will ask for proof that you are able to pay the deposit and rent due to a string of time wasters.
This proof is in the form of a Western Union or MoneyGram payment to a lawyer,a friend or family member.

In either case, if payment is made and you give this person the details, they will collect the money.
You will not hear from them again.

All the details such as names, addresses, pictures etc. that the scammer uses in order to back up his story, are stolen from elsewhere.

If you are reading this because you are looking for property to rent, and you are in contact with this thief you are probably searching Craigslist, Gumtree or similar listing sites. If you receive any requests from 'Landlords' asking for some kind of payment before viewing, then it will also be a scam. Please forward the mail to me at the address in my signature line and I will investigate and list them if necessary.

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