Fake Craigslist Ad Attracts Strangers To O.C. Home
SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. (CBS) ― They were making dinner when suddenly strangers were peeping in their windows. A San Clemente couple's effort to rent their home on Craigslist has turned into a nightmare.
The Van Nostrans are boxing up the eight years they spent in their San Clemente home.
But before they moved to their new house, they wanted to find good tenants in their current home.
"We are asking $3,500. It's 2,800 square feet…basically 3 to 4 bedrooms," said Melissa Van Nostran.
So their realtor put an ad on Craigslist but the problem was that someone else posted a fraudulent one too.
Someone advertised the Van Nostran's house lease for only $1,400 a month. The fake ad said the owner would send the house keys after he received a deposit.
Interested renters saw the real and fraudulent ads.
"We got multiple calls, multiple emails on the house obviously when it was listed for $1,400 because everybody was like, 'oh that's too good to be true,'" said Melissa.
And it was.
Not only that the family got flooded with calls and emails, they got unexpected company because the fake ad said the house was vacant and available to check out.
"I had somebody look in the window while I was making dinner and they kind of looked at me like 'who are you?' And I looked at them like, 'can I help you?'" Melissa said.
Orange County Sheriff's investigators are looking into the Van Nostran's case. So far, no money has been sent to the person who posted the fake ad.
On Wednesday night, the family was able to rest easy – they'll be moving on and out after learning a tough lesson.
"You can't believe that people would do that…and myself, I would never think of doing something negative – impacting somebody else's life in that way. So it opens your eyes up that there is a lot of bad people out there," said Mike Van Nostran.