I knew I would need a new place to live by September 1st and because I like to plan ahead, I started looking on Craigslist months ago. As June and July came and went I was starting to get worried because the cost in rent went up drastically in the past few years and every place I was remotely interested in was either crazy expensive, ghetto or too far away from where I want and need to be.
Then, one day I found this awesome house that was "cheap" for what it was so I emailed the person right away. Here's the first response I received:
Good day Applicant,
Thanks for your email and interest in renting my house. I am Morgan Davis, the owner of the house you are making enquiry of. Actually I did reside in the house with my family, my wife and my only daughter before and presently we have moved out due to my official job transfer or posting, whatever you may call it, which has now found me in Warsaw, Poland. Presently my house is still available for rent for $900 USD per month (which includes utilities), though i intended selling it off but on a later thought changed my mind and have decided putting it on rent. More so now, I’m currently in Lagos, Nigeria for an international Christian follower's crusade taking place at the Nigeria national stadium, by one Pastor Chris of the Christ Embassy Ministry.
I want you to understand that I spent a lot on my property that you have requested to rent, so I will solicit for your absolute maintenance of this house and would want you to treat it as your own because cleanliness they say is next to Godliness. It is not all about the money to be paid on rent or spent; it is all about a good maintenance culture which I want you to adopt on the property. I want you to keep it tidy all the time so that I would be full of smiles whenever I come and above all, a good, strong and tight relationship between us when I come for a check up. Please one more thing, I wouldn’t like to have any benefit of trust in you because I want to stand in your words that the property would be well taken care of all the time.
Here is the address of the House again: 3945 NE 42ND AVE, Portland, OR 97213; as to really see how lovely it is if from only the pictures you saw in my posting compare to the 100% comfort to be derived from it as an occupant. Please note than you will only be able to drive by the house for now but can't have a look at the interior until I have sent the keys and documents of the house to you. Reason because, I couldn’t find someone trust worthy to drop the keys with as my call down here was so sudden. I do hope you understand.
It has a dramatic entry foyer with ceramic floor. Extremely spacious rooms throughout with lots of big windows...nice and light! New neutral paint and some newer carpet. Very quiet, low traffic area. New fridge (7/07)...I believe it’s absolutely a perfect home for you and your family. Utilities include Water, Trash, Sewer, Gas etc. Please note that, a deposit payment would be required if accepted to have the property rented..
SO IF YOU ARE REALLY INTERESTED I WILL WANT YOU TO FILL THE RENT APPLICATION FORM BELOW.
RENT APPLICATION FORM.
ARE YOU MARRIED: __________
KIDS _____ (YES/NO), HOW MANY ________
PRESENT ADDRESS: _____________________
ZIP CODE: ____________
HOW LONG ___________IF RENTING
WHY ARE YOU LEAVING__________
IF THIS HOUSE IS BEING GIVEN TO YOU,HOW LONG DO YOU INTEND STAYING ____________
WHEN DO YOU INTEND MOVING IN ______________
IF YOU HAVE A PET: _________
NAME OF PET: _____________
KIND OF PETS: _____________
DO YOU SMOKE ______________
DO YOU DRINK ______________
DO YOU WORK LATE NIGHT ____
HOW SOON CAN YOU MAKE THE MOVE IN DEPOSIT ($900) REQUIRED: ____________
WHEN AND WHERE DO YOU WISH TO RECEIVE THE KEYS AND DOCUMENTS OF THE HOUSE: _______________
Looking forward to hearing from you with all this details so that I can present it to my family, pray over it (because I consult the Almighty God before making any decision) and if accepted, and then have them stored in my file in case of issuing the receipt for you and contacting you.. Await your urgent reply so that we can discuss on how to get the document and the keys to you, please we are giving you all this based on trust and again I will want you to stick to your words, you know that we are very far apart now and only putting everything into God's hands and hope that you will not let us down.
The house will be available for rent for a period of five and a half years so you have a choice of deciding how long you intend staying there... Here is my number 011-234-807-206-7017, I will be expecting to hear from you.
Feel free to call me for more information and arrangements.
Now, I am pretty smart and I had a huge hunch this was total bullshit and I don't like religious fanatics but I was curious. I wrote back to him just to see what he would say and this is the response I got: the subject line said, "Acceptance"
Thanks for getting back to me with the completed Rental Application Form and i must let you know that i bless the minute you picked interest to rent my house and consider it a huge blessing on my path from God and yes, i have put it in pray that God will give me a responsible and God fearing person to rent my house and also one that walks in his ways and precepts and i can't thank him enough for bringing us together. Well, I just want to let you know that we have decided that you rent our house, as we have found your application very satisfactory and acceptable. So we would want you to go through this email and get back to us on what you feel so we could proceed in renting the house to you...
We will be sending the following documents to you via UPS to the contact address you sent to us and also with the tracking number with which the UPS service will operate, as to enable you pick up the House Keys / Documents from their office over there in order to have a full access into the house. Please once again, i want to trust you and i hope you do not disappoint us and I promise you that, you will love the house and not only that, you will also enjoy a good relationship between us.
The following documents are here with us as I couldn't find anyone whom i could trust to drop them with for this purpose. But never mind, the UPS service will do for that.
In doing this, you will need to make a security deposit payment which is refundable (should incase you don't like the house) to enable you secure the house and also,the shipment of the Keys and document to your current address that i have here in the rental form, after which you could move in at your convenience. The rent starts counting after 24 hours of moving in, you will be required to make the first month rental fees.
Here are the contents of the Parcel that Will be sent.
1) Entrance and the rooms Keys
2) Paper/Permanent house form
3) The house documentary file.
4) Full Description of the house
5) Payment Receipt
I will be receiving the security deposit of $900 from you via Western Union because l think it reliable, secured and fast, and moreover, my Christian team and I, got into Nigeria just few weeks back and we have been trying to settle down for our purpose. This has made it difficult for me to set up a bank account here for transaction like this. But never mind, I will be setting up one (Joint Account, for us) with the security deposit by this month for future rental payments.
With respect to this acceptance, i will be waiting to hear from you as to proceed with the delivery arrangements.
Thanks and Remain Blessed.
What a bastard. Seriously? The sad thing is people fall for this shit. I drove by the house and there was a for sale sign in front and the house was listed for 375,000 and the real Morgan Davis' phone number was listed so I called. No one answered but on his voicemail he said to watch out for the fake Ad on craigslist. I wrote back and in the subject line it wrote, "Denied!" Then I wrote:
Hey Morgan Davis,
You're a piece of shit who uses God to try and scam people out of their money. Fuck you and your god, he's just as fake as you. Have a nice day fuckface!
A couple hours later the posting was deleted. He never responded. Seriously, I hate moving.