There are great deals to constantly be found, especially this time of year. Spring is a great time to get out and shop, go to garage sales, and find great deals online. New fashion is released, new spring décor is out, and there is constantly something new to find. One of the joys of shopping is finding the best deal possible and finding those gems that seem to be too good to be true. The bad thing is, that sometimes they are too good to be true. Everyone is out to get your money when you are shopping, and while most places do it legally and have good deals, there are exceptions to the rule. There are scams to beware of, and one right now is easy to fall for if you aren't paying attention this time of year. 

Another Scam in California

Credit: Stuart Miles
Credit: Stuart Miles

There are numerous scams out there, and it seems like constantly someone is trying to get your money. With it being garage sale season, there are many good finds to be had, but not all the treasures you see are what they appear. Most people find garage sales by driving around town and looking for a sign to follow, but with social media and the internet, many sellers will post their sales, often with pictures and sometimes with prices. Most of the time it is to help businesses or sell something quickly. The seller will typically hold an item if messaged about it, but not all will. Most of the time these are great ways to browse a sale without leaving your home or using gas, but some use this method to scam potential customers. 

Online and Garage Sale Scams in California

Credit: grinvalds
Credit: grinvalds

When browsing through social media and seeing potential sales with prices, don't fall for this common scam. Many will post a great price, such as a hot tub for $400, or perhaps a trailer for $200. They seem too good to be true, and that is because they are. The seller will mention a deposit to hold the item, which is a scam. Most that use Facebook Marketplace know that common practice is to dibs an item, set up a meeting time and place, and then pay. If a deposit is asked, do NOT pay for it. Another sign is to look at the seller's page. If it is a page that is under a month old, it is likely a scam. If they do not have many friends or pictures, it is likely a scam. There are exceptions to these rules, but most of the time, it is better to look for a different deal. 

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There are many scams out there, but this one should be easy to avoid if you are cautious, smart, and do a little research. I nearly messaged one of these scammers last week, because I didn't read the full post, and had I seen the deposit earlier, I never would have considered it. This is what they are hoping for, and it is easy to fall for if you aren't being smart. Don't let one of these scammers get your money and continue to have success with this scam. 

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