House hunters have been warned about a cruel online scam which has ripped off thousands from would-be tenants.
Authorities are investigating alleged Facebook Marketplace fraudsters who took advantage of the tight rental market on the Gold Coast to fleece $30,000 from at least 10 victims, including single mums.
The scam resulted in three families and removal trucks turning up to their ‘new home’ at Pimpama last weekend, only find to discover they’d been duped.
It has prompted the horrified real estate agent leasing the $550 a week home to issue an urgent warning to prospective tenants to be cautious about online platforms they’re viewing properties on.
Gold Coast real estate agent Emma Snowdon (pictured) has warned prospective renters to be vigilant in their property search
Single mum Marie-Claire Lord is planning to make the 700km move from Newcastle NSW to the Sunshine State.
She came across the three bedroom duplex online advertised for $500 a week and handed over a $2,000 bond to the ‘landlord’.
Her worst fears were realised after she found the same property advertised on realestate.com.au for a different price and got in contact with the listed agent.
Ms Lord reported the alleged scam to Queensland Police and is now spreading the word to warn other prospective renters.
‘The worst part is I’m not the only person. We are upwards of 10 different victims and upwards of $30,000,’ she wrote online.
‘Anyone in the rental market needs to be made aware of these predators.’
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