A craigslist scam that can cost your lawn care business thousands!

There are all sorts of scams being played out there on the internet. As an owner of a lawn care business, you need to know what is going on that is effecting your industry because it may be personally effecting you at some time in the future. If you advertise your lawn care services on craigslist, be aware that you may be contacted by many strange people with many strange requests. As we will see from this discussion on the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, if you get a request to service a local property from someone living outside of your country, be wary. Read on….

One lawn care business owner wrote “I have been posting lawn care ads on craigslist and have gotten some jobs from there. However, I recently had someone email me about my ad and from the get go it was strange. This person was out of the country but wanted me to do their lawn for them when they got back in town. Then they wanted to send me money for a retainer until they got back.

Here is the last email I got for them.

Hello,

i will bee Haven some visitor in my house next weekend and i will want the yard to be well clean … i will bee more than happy if you can help me with this , i would have love you to go to my hosue to check on the yard as am away now but the gate is currently lucked and it will be defficult again as i didnt inform the street securtiy about your inspection as well,i will like to know what you or you really specialize into and how capable you can handle this for me. and my client will surely sent you the payment Well,i just emailed to let you know that i got your information(Names and Address)

Shown below for the payment to be issued and i want you to reconfirm the information as well , it will be sent to your contact address this weekend unfailingly via over night courier service because i will like the service to stratas soon as possible .the house is locally located in the same city ,and thats the reason why i contacted someone locally to execute the project and i saw your information on craigslist and we are both in the same city and it will save trasnsport to getting to my place so thats the reason why i chose you for the work

I will need you to forward me the information of your Referee,i mean reference of you.i await your prompt response..i will call you oin sunday night to be able to speak with you over the phone..I shall be arriving by next week but the upfront payment for the service must have gotten to you then so as soon as i arrive home i can just take you there and you can start working on immediately please, email your availability towards this service for my prompt arrival or for the payment

I will need you to get back to me with the name that is suppose to be on the check.Please let me know the name the check should be issued to.

I want to make sure that the payment is sent to you for the first two week and I will arrive latest by this coming week, I have inform my flight agent to book my flight direct to you and i will email you all my flight details so that you will know when i will touch down and i will also let you know the Airport that i will landing Thank you so much and God bless youThank you and i look forward meeting you..pls get back to me asap

Thanks

So I am wondering is this some sort of a scam? Are they trying to get some personal information from me that they can use to steal my money? Has anyone else run into anything like this on craigslist ads? Just curious what you guys think about it.

I haven’t done anything yet with this person. I did write them and said I would only do something if we meet in person. I got home yesterday and a fed ex package was there for me. Opened it and there was a check for $2,500.00. I took the check and printed off all the emails I got from them and went to the FBI office. I doubt they will ever be able to get the guy.

I put an ad out on craigslist a couple of times last week. I was thinking it was free advertising. However, out of the post I only got one legitimate response. Everything else was spam and this scam guy. So was wondering is craigslist really worth the hassle. Sure its free advertising but is it worth it really?”

A second lawn care business owner wrote “Yep. SCAM…. The scam is at some point when they think you trust them, they will send you a check for more than you need. Say the job you agree to is a $500 job, they will send you a check for $2,500, you deposit it and because they overpaid they will ask that you send them back the $2,000 overage. Problem is, the check they sent you is a forgery, but your check is real. They cash your check before your bank gets it back as a bogus check. In the end you are left with a $2,500 loss and the scammer has $2,000 of your money.

Don’t perform any lawn care job unless you can meet someone in person that is in charge of the property and you know how to reach them if there are any problems.”

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