Are you currently apartment hunting in Blacksburg, VA and learning the ins and outs of evaluating listings posted on craigslist? No pictures? This might be a bad sign, or it could stem from safety concerns of the current tenants.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) provides information on its website about rental scams and how to avoid them. According to the FTC, scammers may steal ads by reposting real listings with their contact info instead the real landlord information. Scammers may also create listings for places that don’t exist, or that aren’t for rent. If the price of the place you found online is much lower than anything else in the surrounding area, this may be cause for concern.
Scammers may not necessarily be after your money; they may be collecting personal information for the purposes of identity theft. Be wary of giving your social security number, driver’s license, etc. out to someone you haven’t met for a listing you haven’t seen.
There’s no substitute for an in-person visit from you (or if need be, a trusted friend).