EDMOND, Okla. (KFOR) – An Edmond man says a phony Facebook Marketplace rental property listing cost him nearly $2,000 with nothing to show for it.
Jason Stanford tells KFOR a Facebook listing showed a three bed, two bath Edmond home for $1,445/month.
The Facebook listing is no longer available, but there is a Zillow listing for the same home.
Stanford’s mother initially saw the listing and thought it’d be a great match for her sons.
“It was a big reset in my life because I was planning on getting away, you know, and starting over again with my brothers,” said Standford.
Stanford expressed interest in the listing and shortly after, a 252 area code phone number texted him asking if he was interested.
The alleged homeowner used the name Jordan Audrey Vick.
According to an Assessor of Oklahoma County property search, the property used to belong to Jordan Vick but was sold to a company March 8.
“The house is still available for rent and we are looking for a responsible person/family to occupy and maintain the house,” the alleged homeowner texted Stanford.
The alleged homeowner then asked if Stanford would be interested in a self-viewing tour.
There was a FirstKey Homes Corporate lock box on the front door that could be unlocked for $0.99 and a personal code that would be texted to the interested renter.
Stanford self-viewed the home September 29 and thought of it as a dream-come-true because it was ‘cheap’ and only an eight minute drive from his daughter.
“He emailed me an application. From there I sent him my ID and my brother’s ID to sign the lease agreement, and he said that there was other applicants trying to get this place. So he needed the security deposit first, and he said the receipt will be on the lease agreement, which it is,” said Stanford.
He set up a time to meet with the alleged homeowner, but Vick never showed up.
The alleged homeowner claimed his daughter was in an automobile accident and that was the reason for his no-call, no-show, according to Stanford.
Stanford told KFOR he thought something might be off since he hadn’t met the alleged homeowner yet, so he asked for a picture of Vick’s driver’s license.
Lo and behold, a driver’s license was sent. The ID allegedly belonging to a Jordan Vick.
The ID even had a yellow star in the top right hand corner, indicating it was a ‘real ID.’
The alleged homeowner said there were other applicants who were interested in the property and to secure the home, Stanford would need to send first month’s rent of $795 as soon as possible.
$700 for a security deposit was also requested, according to Stanford.
“If the company is asking for a security deposit [without meeting in person],” Kitt Letcher with the Better Business Bureau said. “You have no recourse; it’s like sending cash, you have no way to send it back.”
Stanford sent a total of $1,700+ over Cashapp for ‘move-in fees.’
“It seemed totally legit,” said Stanford.
As soon as everything was filled out and returned to the alleged homeowner, it went radio silent.
“They actually deleted or blocked me from my text messages and my calls because I have tried calling all three numbers and I have not heard nothing back for them. I had friends call them, but they have not picked up or anything,” stated Stanford.
News 4 tried calling and texting all three numbers as well.
We received two texts saying they were not Jordan Vick and asking who we were.
News 4 informed that individual there was a story airing involving their text conversation with Stanford.
No one replied after that, though.
News 4 was able to locate the actual leasing agent, Zandile Fontenot, and she told KFOR there are renters moving into the house Monday.
As we were talking with Stanford, a couple began moving in.
“I’m just trying to move forward and keep my head up,” stated Stanford.
He’s now looking for another home, but said he has already looked at other homes in the area that could also be scams based on the lack of knowledge of the property or a lack of house touring availability.
Stanford warns others of looking to Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace as he believes most of those to be fraudulent.
According to the Oklahoma State Courts Network, this alleged homeowner could face up to three years in prison for the intent to cheat or defraud another by color or aid of any false token, writing, or other pretense.
The attorney Stanford has been in contact with told KFOR the alleged homeowner could be breaking state, national, and international laws.
Stanford is actively looking for a real estate agent or a rental property in the Edmond area.
News 4 has reached out to Cashapp to see if there’s a refund in Stanford’s future, but hasn’t received a response.
A FirstKey Homes Corporate representative told KFOR over the phone scammers gaining access to their lock boxes is something that happens often.
“Like homeowners nationwide, our top priority is the safety and security of the homes we offer and the communities we live in and serve. To help deter the public from becoming victims of rental scams criminals, we place collateral prevention materials at each home in high-visibility areas – tags on Rently front door key boxes, counters, appliances, hallways, doors, etc. We also provide information throughout our website, including every property description, on the dedicated Protect Yourself, Online Help Center, and Legal pages, as well as a link to the FTC website with further tips. We rely upon Rently, a third-party service platform, to provide limited access to our homes, especially when contactless service remains essential for many as Covid continues to be a public health concern.”
Jordan Campbell, District Operations Director, Dallas & Oklahoma City
News 4 has reached out to Larry Propson as well via text message but have not heard anything back.
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