It’s hard to rent an apartment in New York without feeling like you’re getting ripped off. The exorbitant monthly rents, the brokers’ fees, the multiple deposits—all in exchange for dwellings that are smaller and darker and more ill-suited to human habitation than those in almost every other city. Indeed it can be difficult to explain to out-of-towners that while, in a sense, everyone is being ripped off by the high cost of housing in this rapacious city, you are not literally being ripped off.
Of course, in a city filled with so many desperate apartment seekers, more than a few people do fall victim to rental scams. Like the 40 unfortunate would-be renters who each coughed up thousands of dollars to secure a phony rental in Chelsea. Read More