Trulia rental scam watch and American Realty Pros

We recently wrote about Trulia’s doomed efforts to cut back on apartment rental scams in its listings.

The scams continue, as they always will wherever the slimy rental services we routinely refer to as bedbugs are allowed to have a presence. We have yet to find a rental service that operates its business in an honest fashion. We don’t allow rental services to advertise at YoChicago, and have even blocked their ability to run Google Ads on our site.

But back to Trulia. To its credit, Trulia did remove the ad we flagged as fraudulent in our recent post. In that post we suggested, as we frequently have before, that renters should never respond to an ad that doesn’t disclose an exact address. Perhaps in response to our caution the bedbugs have been running ads at Trulia that disclose an exact address. One problem: there are no rental buildings at the addresses listed.

One “Address Not Disclosed” ad caught our attention – one of many. It’s placed by American Realty Pros – a company that’s on our rental service do-not-call list – for a 1-bedroom in ZIP code 60654 renting for $1,462 a month. Quite a bargain, based on the ad content.

The ad description (“Indoor access to East Bank Club for member”) fits only one property in the area, Kingsbury Plaza, and the photos accompanying the ad are of Kingsbury Plaza. According to Kingsbury Plaza’s ad at Trulia, one-bedrooms start at $1,889 and range upward to $2,326. The lowest-priced apartment at Kingsbury Plaza, a studio, rents for $1,514. Convertible studios start at $1,680 a month.

You’ll find the same prices at Kingsbury Plaza’s Web site, where you’ll also learn that no one-bedroom apartments are currently available or scheduled to be available in the near future. American Realty Pros placed its lying ad at Trulia just 4 days ago.

Yelpers have expressed a low opinion of American Realty Pros.

If you’re looking to rent in downtown Chicago, Lincoln Park or Lake View, YoChicago has an easy way for you to avoid rental service rental fraud. You’ll find almost every rental option in those areas on our rental lists and maps, and useful tips about the neighborhoods in our rental Guides. Skip all online rental advertising and deal directly with a landlord. If you’re looking to rent a home or condo, search rentals at any reputable real estate broker site. You’re likely to save money as well as avoiding hassles.

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