One of the very real problems with craigslist is how wide open it is to anyone who has something to sell. Not all offerings are as advertised. Some people would never use craigslist for that reason alone. It is free and you can write as much as you want to be clear about whom you are looking for. BUT one has to be savvy. Remember to be thorough, follow our guide on how to find a good housemate.
Recognize a Bad Ad
Here’s an ad I saw today. I suspect it’s a horrible place to live. Can you see why? I have listed seven reasons below. Do you have the same seven?
!OPENINGS ARE AVAILABLE RIGHT NOW FOR BOTH MAKE AND FEMALE SPOTS IN THIS NICE HOLLYWOOD LOCATION!!
PERFECT FOR ACTORS, STUDENTS, VISITORS, AND WORKING FOLKS TO SAVE SOME $$ ON RENT!!
!!!! MOVE IN TODAY !! Great FURNISHED SHARED Housing in GREAT Location !!!
*** $550 Rent INCLUDES: ALL Utilities / Wireless Internet Access / TV Cable…etc.
*** AVAILABLE CAR PARK on DRIVE WAY & STREET PARKING ( NO PERMIT RESTRICTIONS )
*** WASHER & DRYER ON-SITE
*** EASY MOVE IN: NO Contract — Month to Month Lease
*** ON-SITE MANAGER 24 / 7
If you want to save money and still live in an awesome location in HOLLYWOOD at Franklin and Western Ave., then you should definitely come check out our SHARED ROOM DORM STYLE Housing. 1 Block Walking distance to Metro Subway Western Station / Hollywood Dash & Metro Bus Stops, Ralphs Grocery Store, Starbucks Coffee, Restaurants and BarsÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ Close to many Film Schools.
Everything in the house is FURNISHED, ( Full Kitchen Wares, Blankets / Pillows / Sheets for the Bed Spots, Hangers for Closet Spaces….etc ) so all you need to bring is your personal belongings and clothes to move right in !!
Please email us ASAP as space is limited !!
7 Reasons This is a Bad Ad
1) The all caps – designed to draw your attention.
2) “Openings available right now” Really? Why aren’t people staying there?
3) “For make and female spots” Well aside from the typo – that means that there is more than one place available. See #2.
4) “Furnished shared housing” Okay so this place is really a rooming house for short-term temporary stays. Who wants to live with someone else’s furniture?
5) “Manager on site 24/7” What shared housing needs a manager? This is a rooming house.
5) “Easy move in: no contract” Oops. So easy, I wonder who else is living there?
6) Everything included? See #4 except maybe it’s really a hotel but not regulated as such?
7) “Space is limited” Really? Then why are openings right now?
If I desperately needed a space to live for a short period of time I might consider this. But I’d be concerned about who else lived there and I probably wouldn’t feel safe.
Be smart, read the ads carefully and never make an arrangement to live somewhere for longer than two days without having the chance to see it and meet your future housemates before committing to the situation.
Learn more about the housemate selection process: Asking the Right Questions in Your Housemate Interview , How to Write a Great Roommate Ad]