Posted Friday, February 24, 2012 --- 12:15 p.m.
From the Madison Police Department:
02/09/2012 - 9:34 PM
Maybe you have the wrong house, the West Side homeowner said to the young couple at his doorstep. Moments earlier, the 56-year old watched as they backed a U-Haul truck into his driveway. They explained they were married, that they had just driven 800 miles, and they were here to move into his house. They just needed to pick up the keys.
The Madison man said they both looked extremely disappointed when he explained his house was for sale, but not for rent.
This was after they had told him how they had been dealing - telephonically -with a man, who had a thick accent, and claimed to be the owner of the home.
They had already sent him the first month’s rent, and he had instructed them to meet him at the house for a presentation of the keys.
And here they were.
The man at the door, a father himself, had to bread the bad news: they had been scammed.
He never learned where they had originally learned of his home, but the MPD has taken many reports of cyber criminals pirating information and photos on homes that are legitimately for sale, and posting that which they have stolen on websites to make it appear the property is for rent.
The homeowner never did get their names, but did call police. The last he saw of them, they were driving off in the U-Haul, destination unknown.