Someone is posting houses for rent that are listed by Real Estate Professionals using the professional photos and write up. The house is NOT for rent. Then they are collecting rent in advance to secure the rental. They will take your money and run. You will be left homeless and cashless. 

One of my listings was posted on hellogoodbuy which is a local classifieds site. Someone saw it and reported it to me. I was very grateful to steinbachonline for removing the post immediately when I made them aware of it. They also blocked the user. (Which is a bogus name and different than the name used in response to the ad)

Several innocent local people have been scammed out of large amounts of money this way. Listings from several other local offices were targeted. 

The ads on that website keep coming continually.

How to detect the fraud.

1. Drive by and see if it’s listed. (If it is please notify the agent that it is posted for rent)

2. If the supposed landlord says that he cannot show it to you that would be a huge red flag. Especially if they say they are out of the country. 

3. If they ask for 3 months rent to secure it for 2 years…

4. If they ask you to send the money without meeting them…


  1. The application form is requesting your social insurance number and drivers license.

Actual text from a scam artist. (Address has been changed)


I received your inquiry about my property for rent at 123 Downtown ST, Steinbach, Manitoba, My name is Bishop Ingrid Newman , My family and I just moved down to Sacramento California in our new house due to an international Christian follower’s crusade, We are currently working with the Church of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saint. You can look into our website at: , and  we will be here for 4 to 5 years. My initial plan was to sell the house of which I did a research for an agent to handle it on our behalf and after getting one, we got a deal but later the agent that was in charge of our property was asking too much of an agent FEE and also making it difficult for people who cannot afford to BUY this property, to stay away from buying my property. and so presently, this property is no longer up for sale, under minding the for sale sign on this property which I put there myself before leaving, but I find it difficult to let go this adorable property, and so I have decided to rent this property to a responsible and GOD fearing tenant who is willing to take very good care of it in our absence. Pets are allowed as long as they are not destructive. The rent is $1000 and  security deposit is $1000 and total move-in cost is $2000 and all the utilities are included in the monthly rent,as i am in a governmental programmer that sponsors my utilities on monthly basis and pets are also allowed. my wife Benita has hearing Impaired, Here is the number to text me because of my wife condition, also I do check my email often so i will be the one to talk with you on the phone should you have a question.

Feel free to contact me  +1 (916) 936-0296 . You can drive-by to view the outside and neighborhood of the house and get back to me with the rental application filled out


The RCMP office is aware of the fraud. It is re-occurring just like the CRA fraud. 

The RCMP will not do anything at all. They don’t even want the numbers or the copy of the dialogue. They are not warning the public so I have taken it upon myself to do so. 

They did however give me a very valuable contact. If you become aware of a scam, please report it to;


PH. 1-888-495-8501

FX. 1-888-654-9426


So, I called Canadian anti-fraud centre and they said they have a high volume of calls so I should go to the website. They did not put me on hold. They hung up. 

Then, I went to the website. I had to create an account first. Then I spent approximately an hour filling out the report. Once I submitted the report it gave me this message;

Please be aware that the CAFC is not a criminal investigative agency, we are a central repository for fraud data. Our Operational Support Unit provides support to law enforcement agencies by analyzing fraud data submitted to the CAFC. If you are currently being victimized please contact your local police service immediately for assistance. If you’re already a victim and wish to have a follow from the police, or require a file number for insurance purposes, you will need to contact your local police service to file a complaint.

MY CONCLUSION is that the best way to protect innocent people from being defrauded of rent money on a house that is not for rent is to MAKE THE PUBLIC AWARE of this SCAM. 

PLEASE tell your family, friends and co-workers. THIS IS STILL HAPPENING! The names will be different every time but the tactic will be similar.

Tina Plett, Sutton Group-Kilkenny Real Estate

This Post Has 14 Comments

  1. Tina Plett

    Would you like to see an example of the application form?


    Name (First name/ Middle name/Surname ) : __________?
    Phone numbers (home,cell and office line ) # :__________?
    Marital Status:__________?
    How many proposed occupants :__________?
    List all in addition to yourself including approx age :__________?
    Present Address :__________?
    Will you have pets :__________?
    Please describe Breed, size :__________?
    Personality of pet :__________?
    When do you plan to move in, please write exact date?
    Intended length of lease:__________?
    Do you agree to pay the payment before you move in:__________?
    If you are ask to make a down payment to secure the property today and
    take it off market, How much will you be able to pay:__________?
    Length of previous tenancy :__________?
    Present occupation :__________?
    Are you a section 8 applicant
    Do you work late night :__________?
    Do you smoke :__________?
    Do you drink :__________?

    I ___________________, Certify that answers given herein are true and
    complete to the best of my knowledge. I authorize investigation of all
    statements contained in this application for tenant screening as may
    be necessary in arriving at a tenant decision. I understand that the
    landlord may terminate any rental agreement entered into for any
    misrepresentation made above. Looking forward to hearing from you with
    all these details so that I can have it in my file in case of issuing
    the receipt and contacting you. Await your reply so we can discuss on
    how to get the document and the key to you.

    N.B: I believed in the word of the lord that state in (Jeremiah 29:11)
    “I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper
    and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. I and my
    family are a good Christian that believed in the word of the lord. And
    in this life what goes around comes around which is what will happen
    to me if i rip off your money, believe me i will not want such thing
    to happen to me or my family.So i don’t have any reason to lie to you
    knowing the consequences involved in it. so understand you are dealing
    with a good landlord and God fearing man because i know you work hard
    to earn this money so i truly understand what it mean to have a roof
    to relax.

    Thanks and God bless.

    Jacob Antonie

    “Everybody Deserves a Home Both The Rich And The Poor.”

  2. Denise

    So frustrating….I’m thankful that you posted your story. I Just replied to an ad and the response was EXACTLY what is in you post, word for word. I, too, am frustrated that there is nothing that anyone (in “authority”) will do! I hope that more house-hunters will find your post! Thank you for saving me from trouble!

    1. tina

      Denise, I have had several tenants contact me already and let me know that they recognized the scam in time. It makes me feel good knowing i spared a few people from getting scammed.
      Thank you for commenting. Tell your family and friends this is real.

  3. Tyler

    Ended up getting scammed by the same person for 2070 butler ave in Houston bc

    1. tinaplett

      Tyler, I am so sorry that this happened to you. Please report it. If it is listed for sale please make the agent aware of it. Unfortunately, you may never see that money again. I hope you find a good place to live.

  4. Kyle

    It seemed too good to be true. So I decided to do some digging, looking up the number and yes it’s the same email just the names and prices have changed a bit. So I’ve decided I o try and mess with them for a bit. But it’s on a hello goodbye for Portage La Prairie

    1. tinaplett

      I hope it gets exposed quickly so they leave the area.

  5. Olivia

    Same thing happened to me, glad I found this ! And didn’t send money

  6. Milly

    Wow. I wish I had seen this two weeks ago. I got scammed by the same guy and lost 1100$ and ended up homeless. I hope he will pay for his wrong doings one day!

    Thanks for the post Tina.

    1. tinaplett

      I am so sorry this happened to you. Which town & province was the house that was advertised where you were going to rent? I am curious if they are still targeting Steinbach area. Last I heard this same group was defrauding people in Sask.

  7. Yuli

    The same stunt was pulled on me when I inquired about a rental listing for a house in North Vancouver, BC. Today Sept 21/19, 3 days after I sent in an inquiry about viewing it on Craigslist, I received a text from 916-936-0296 stating that I should check my email & get back to them ASAP. In the email, I see the same letter as above word for word except the address is different and the rent & deposit are different. I then checked for the ad in Craigslist & couldn’t find it. So it has been removed. I felt the email was too good to be true so I googled the address & found out it’s for sale. I contacted the realtor & discovered that the owner is not “Bishop Larry Newman” ( & the contact number is written up in a scam alert blog, as in this blog. Thank you Tina! I’ve already complained to Craigslist about what happened.

    1. tinaplett

      Wow, this scammer is making their rounds. I have been notified by people in several other provinces as well.Thank you for reporting it. Please post a warning on social media in your area.

  8. Ron

    I was looking at property in High River, Alberta to possibly rent……. and came across one that SORT of interested me. I e-mailed the person and got that e-mail (above) from a Bishop Bailey. working though the Church of Latter Day Saints. After deciding NOT to move from where I already live, I found another property….again in High River, that REALLY interested me, so again, I e-mailed the contact and sure enough, the same e-mail content comes back to me, except this person used another name, but still………… identifying him/herself as a Bishop for the Mormon Church. (Church of Latter Day Saints).
    I contacted him/her and asked what was going on with this SAME e-mail I received a couple of weeks ago for a DIFFERENT property, under a DIFFERENT name, and STILL working through this SAME church, but haven’t heard back since.
    They use many different e-mail addresses, but the ones I received were from (
    Be wary….if it’s too good to be true, then it IS!

  9. Ron

    Thank you Tina for this page!!!
    An update to the above.
    I’ve been following this guy, or whoever it is that portrays to be a Bishop through the Mormon Church. I’ve actually confronted him with MANY questions, but all I get back is “You have the wrong guy”.
    I’ve traced his IP addresses and each one that’s connected to an e-mail is located in a different part on the U.S. He even has one in Madrid, Spain. All of his e-mail addresses end with (America Online).
    I don’t think anyone could trace his whereabouts unless they made it a mission…..and no doubt, whoever it is, is using a VPN (virtual private network) so he can’t be tracked.

    The GOOD news? His day WILL come.….it ALWAYS does!…… but until then, a lot of innocent people, young and old are suffering at his ruthless hands….but worse yet, he uses the LORD to promote his agenda!

Leave a Reply