How to Recognize Fraud: Fake Buyers

It pays to be savvy about spotting fraud. From fake websites to fake buyers, there are plenty of opportunities to get hosed if you don’t have your wits about you. How can you tell when someone is trying to steal your money or personal information when all you are trying to do is sell some furniture (or sell your car, or house, etc.).

The first step is very nondescript reply from a sketchy email address, or a text message if you provided a phone number with your ad. The email likely has a few numbers in it, and is at a less commonly used domain, or a domain you have never heard of. The initial reply is probably something like “do you still have it“, “is this still available?“, or “I am interested in your item“. They save their usual pitch for later, as by keeping their initial reply simple, they are much harder to detect as a scam. They will usually pick a nondescript, typically English-Canadian sounding name to use (or at least, what they perceive as typical), but use poor grammar and spelling, as well as strange diction reveals that they are not the average Canadian they claim to be. If you receive a text message, they will generally ask you to email them.

Recognizing Fraud

The scam pitch: They will often talk about god or religion, use words like “blessed”, make frequent reference to how “serious” they are, or babble about their job as a missionary, in the military, for green peace, or another position that they think will lend them credibility. The capitalization will be random seeming, and the phrasing will often be strange (as if it was typed in a foreign language and run through google translate). Here is a typical follow up reply.
Hello,
Thanks for the prompt reply.Well am okay for the
(insert title of your ad) i am highly interested in it,and i Don’t want you to worry abt the shipping because i have a shipping company that will be coming for the Pick up of the Advert at your residence as soon as payment has been made,The shipper will come for the immediate pick-up and make sure everything is clean up ok

I also want you to know that i will be paying via Money Order or Certified Check and it will contain both your asking price and the shipping fees via my shipping company and no pick up will be made until Money order is received and cashed by you i also want you to be serious about this so we can both finished this transaction in one mind, and here are the details needed so that i can mail the Money order without any delay,i lookup concluding the sale sooner.Thanks

FULL NAME:
ADDRESS :
PROVINCE,STATE:
POSTAL CODE:
TEL #:
SELLING PRICE:

As soon as this is received the payment will be mailed out with no further delay,Once the datas are provided to me,i can send payment immediately.I will be expecting your reply asap.? Kindly reply back with the requested question so the purchase can be completed

Best Regard,
Stay Blessed With Your Family

The reply seems odd, but since many don’t see how they could be scammed when they aren’t the ones paying, they might fall for it and continue to reply, which would lead them to a response like this one:

The payment which will be delivered to you 3 to 5 working days by next week. Kindly mark the ads sold on the site right now as well have it keep intact for me OK. And include an excess fund meant for my mover agent fee’s. As soon as you get it, take it to your bank for instantly cashed, You will deduct your selling price, And get the remaining balanced sent to my mover agent via western union money transfer or money gram store around you.

Which I will send you his information later. … I hope you do understand me clearly. I’m as well giving you $50 for the inconvenience and for the assistance. I await for your reply as soon as you got my message. I wish you a great day ahead.

Of course, they aren’t actually sending you real money. The cheque will bounce, or be found to be fake, in any case, you won’t end up with the money they send, and if you send the “mover” money, then you will lose more than you ever stood to gain.

If you are selling on any classified website, don’t agree to any transactions that are not face to face, and don’t send personal information to strangers online (except for what you need to tell people to coordinate a meet-up). Though the Kijiji community is full of friendly people who just want to save (or make) a few bucks with used goods or services, any time you are online you should keep your wits about you, and remember your own safety.

Cost of Renting in Canada and the Vacancy Rates by the Number of Bedrooms

Canadian apartment finder, RentSeeker.ca, released its annual Canadian Rental Housing Market Pricing and Vacancy Data infographic, providing a unique snapshot of the Canadian rental housing market.

The 2015 annual report covers pricing and vacancy rates of apartment rentals in major cities across Canada and includes Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Calgary, Kingston, Hamilton, Edmonton, Victoria, London, Guelph, Kitchener, Windsor, Sarnia, and a number of other cities in Canada.

According to the RentSeeker report, Toronto and Vancouver had the highest prices for one bedroom apartments with Calgary and Edmonton following with the next highest prices. Toronto also had the highest prices on two and three bedroom apartments with rental rates for a three bedroom apartment reflecting upwards of $2,300 on average.

Gatineau and Windsor reflected the lower-end pricing for apartment rentals with one bedroom, in Gatineau averaging $630 and in Windsor $664. Two and three bedrooms in Windsor averaged $798 for a two bedroom and $912 for three bedroom apartments.

Vacancy rates for all cities were relatively low, especially compared to some cities in the neighboring U.S. The lowest vacancy rates were in Vancouver with a vacancy rate of only 0.5% for one bedroom apartments. Toronto and Calgary also had lower vacancy rates with Calgary at 1.3% and Toronto at 1.6% for one bedroom apartments. Windsor and Montreal had higher vacancy rates with Montreal averaging 4.2% and Windsor averaging 4.1% for one bedrooms. The highest vacancy rates were in Gatineau, which averaged a 6.4% vacancy rate.

Canadian Housing Market and Vacancy Rate

Canadian Vacancy Rate

View the full report here.

It’s Kijiji’s 10th anniversary!

image_blog_10_years_EN

We know it seems like Kijiji has been part of your life forever, but actually, we’ve only been around since 2005! That means that we’re celebrating our tenth anniversary this year.

We’re proud of how much Kijiji has grown in the past ten years. The website we started in Montreal and Quebec City on February 28, 2005 was a small operation, but it reached the rest of the country in just a few months. Today, we’re active in over 100 Canadian cities and our website registers over 12 million unique visitors per month, which translates to 24 million eyeballs a month, if our calculations are correct.

These numbers are impressive, but our greatest achievement and source of pride is you - our trusted and beloved Kijiji community. Any person that has ever visited our website, posted an ad or responded to a listing is part of our wide and inclusive community, which now includes 40% of Canada’s Internet population – not bad for a homegrown operation!

But we’re much more than just a buy-and-sell platform – our ten-year history is full of inspiring and heartwarming stories. Just a few weeks ago, Kijiji was instrumental in reuniting Jason Green with his mother after 25 years apart. There are countless other tales of people coming together and helping each other through Kijiji, which overwhelms us with joy.

When we started our site, we didn’t choose the name “Kijiji” at random. Our name means “village” in Swahili, and we selected it because it symbolized the essence of what we wanted to create – a site where people could connect with each other within their community. Today, Kijiji is exactly that kind of website, and it’s all thanks to you.

The fun doesn’t stop there - after all, what’s a birthday without a party? To show how grateful we are, we’ve planned a pretty awesome ten-year celebration. Stay tuned!

Categories:Uncategorized

These 8 Common Resume Mistakes Will Land Your Resume in the Shredder

Looking for a job is tough, but it becomes exponentially harder if your resume is not up to snuff. Your resume is, in many cases, the first impression that you are giving to a company. The hiring manager or recruiter doesn’t know any of your great qualities, and they never will if your resume doesn’t get their attention. Even a small mistake on a resume can send the message that you don’t pay attention to detail. What are the major offenses that will get your resume thrown into the paper shredder or recycling bin?

1. The resume is too long. If above the recommended length, you are demanding too much time and attention from the recruiter before proving yourself. Keep their interest, and keep it short! Every 10 years deserve 1 page – don’t surpass this limit, no matter how tempting it might be. If there is something you feel you must share, put it in a separate cover letter.

2. Tiny font. A page for 10 years is not a lot, but just because you want to fit things in, don’t make the font small. Being legible to your eyes is not enough; people have different levels of comfort with small text, and if they need a magnifying glass or to dig out their glasses, or generally strains their eyes, they will likely move onto a more pleasurable read. Don’t assume they will go over it in detail. Make it easy on the reader to maximize your chances of success.

3. Too much creativity disrupting the accepted template. Recruiters and hiring managers are conditioned to look at resumes in a certain way. You can switch things up, but don’t turn convention on its head. You will irritate them by making them take too much time to find the key information points.

4. Regurgitating job descriptions. Don’t copy and paste every job description you’ve had on your resume. If you have a common job title, a reader in your industry will understand your responsibilities without an explanation. Instead, use this space to discuss your accomplishments and the value you brought to your prior employers. How much did you sell? What records or goals did you shatter? Tell the story of your results and success rather than listing duties.

5. Not adding sufficient contact information. Different companies like to communicate differently – accommodate this reality by being easily accessible in many ways. Phone number and email are essential, and as many companies will be checking on your social media, include the links to your profiles to make their job easy.

6. Spelling mistakes. Errors in spelling is a surefire way to show that you are not someone who pays attention to detail. In some fields, a spelling mistake on a resume might kill your chances completely.

7. Making company errors on cover letters. While customization is a great idea, be very careful that you are sending the right company names and not mixing up your cover letters. Sending a cover letter with the wrong company name on it is worse than forgoing the cover letter.

8. Keyword spamming your resume. Don’t put white text on your documents to make it past automated filters in hidden corners. If you can’t include a keyword legitimately in your text some way, leave them out. Put it in your future interest section if you absolutely must have a certain keyword, but don’t try to get past filters with spam. Recruiters will catch on, and they won’t be impressed.

Categories:Kijiji Jobs

5 Tips for the First Time Home Buyer

With mortgage rates possibly headed even lower and property values skyrocketing in some parts of the country, many are considering if now the time to take the plunge into home ownership is now.

1st Time Home Buyers

Think with your head, not your heart. Buying a home is emotional, we get it – but, ideally, you should treat it like you would any other investment to get the most out of the transaction. It is easy to get wrapped up in the excitement and be so afraid of losing out that you are willing to overlook certain things, or skip certain steps such as the home inspection (don’t let anyone pressure you into buying without a home inspection clause, and don’t use the inspector recommended by the selling agent).

Crunch the numbers (independently). So you are pre-approved for a mortgage? Great – that is a good way to show sellers you are serious, and to get an idea of what the bank will give you. Don’t make the mistake of trusting what the bank says you can afford. Remember, selling mortgages is big business for them, and they are trying to sell you on using their products. They will likely pre-approve you for an amount higher than what you can actually afford, as they don’t take into account your daycare costs, the price of your daily commute, what it will cost to make home repairs, and all those other day to day living expenses. Make sure the amount of mortgage you are signing on for is something you can realistically carry, and do some additional calculations for in case interest rates go up. You don’t want to be forced to sell if interest rates rise. Don’t forget to consider different payment schedules and amortization periods. A shorter amortization period or accelerated biweekly payments rather than monthly could save you thousands of dollars in the long run. See how much you could save by using the federal government’s home buyers plan (up to $25000 for an individual, or $50000 for a couple can be borrowed from RRSPs). Does it make sense to use for you?

Remember the invisible costs. Closing costs, land transfer taxes, moving, home repair and renovation costs, and real estate lawyer fees all need to be factored in to the total cost of owning a home. Make sure you have plenty of room in your budget.

Buy at the right time for you and your family, not for interest rates. It is tempting to rush to take advantage of a great rate, but if you end up buying before you can afford it, you might not be as happy in your house as you are imagining yourself to be. Being house poor is no fun, so make sure you have a good down payment and you are comfortable taking on the extra commute, payments, or responsibility of making all the fixes yourself at this point in your life. Do you know your credit score? If it is low, you would save money by improving your credit worthiness before buying a home, and rushing might not make sense.

Don’t furnish your home on credit. Once you move into a big house, after spending all your extra cash on closing fees and moving, it can be tempting to furnish your house with a “buy now, pay later” arrangement. Don’t do it – wait until you have the money for the furniture you want, and save money by buying used furniture on your local Kijiji.