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Another apartment rental scam in NYC

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Got a call a few minutes ago from a friend who lives in a small co-op on the next block. Coming back from doing errands she found a family from FL, parents and 3 kids, in front of her building (a 5 story walk-up) looking for the apartment they "rented" for the week.

Unfortunately they didn't do even basic checking ( a look at google earth would have shown a brownstone versus a luxury high rise at this address) and they were stuck with only an email and cell phone that no one was responding to. Naturally the person who rented them the apartment had nothing to do with the building - or the co-op at all.

Apparently they had found it on Craig's list - and yes, paid in advance.

She helped them find a hotel in the area - but 2 rooms since there were 5 of them - but only because there had been a cancellation.

So - if coming to New York and not reserving a hotel - be sure you are not being scammed. Do not pay anything until you have full details and proof of reliability. Remember than anyone can place an ad, Or, better yet, stay at a real hotel or legal B^B.

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