How To Respond To Craigslist Ads

Craigslist, in the role of online community, has a lot to offer individuals as well as business owners. A sampling of what Craigslist has to offer includes: community events, news, activities, personal ads, forums, housing listings, items for sale, services, small business ads, employment and resumes. The forum and certain sections in the Community category have the primary function of an ideas and information exchange. For these, there is usually no real reason, nor opportunity, to respond.

However, the for sale, personals, employment, housing, resume and services categories give users the chance to give responses to ads - either to get additional information or buy whatever is being offered. For these categories, then, it's smart to use caution when responding. The aim of this article is to cover some precautions that can be taken if you answer ads in these sections of Craigslist.

Personals Precautions

The personals area at Craigslist may be a wonderful place for people to meet casual friends or lifelong romantic partners. Unfortunately, it can sometimes be an easy target for predators looking to prey on trusting victims who have no idea about the danger that can exist when meeting online connections in person.

Among the easiest ways to stay away from a potentially harmful situation is never to agree to meet a person in a secluded location. The first meeting should happen in a busy and public location, this will help to minimize the potential of something bad happening. A predator is not as likely to try to hurt someone in a public place. By the same token, it's not a good idea to travel with someone you've just met to a private place. Wait until you get to know them and are convinced they wish you no harm.

You also have to take precautions to not give out personally identifying information (like your street address or telephone number) to people you meet online. Some people with bad intentions take advantage of the relative anonymity of the internet to hide their true identities and intentions.  Be Smart!

Housing Precautions

There are many housing opportunities that are posted on Craigslist. The housing category is helpful for people looking for a house or apartment to rent, buying a house, roommates, vacation property, subletting or even a house swap. Precautions need to be taken with any of these situations to make sure the other person doesn't have any bad intentions toward you. You can do this by taking the time to carefully screen a potential roommate or renter, and anyone else who may be using your property.

When choosing a  roommate or tenant it's also important to make sure the individual can be trusted and will be able to pay their rent. For roommates it's a good idea to make sure their habits and lifestyle will not create potential conflict.

Job Precautions

Craigslist is often an excellent website for locating new and exciting career opportunities. As with other parts of Craigslist, Jobs has several different categories. This includes working from home, telecommuting, contract positions, full-time and part-time situations. One of the negative aspects to responding to employment related posts is they are often put up anonymously. People placing ads have a choice of using their personal email or one provided by Craigslist. This makes it difficult for job candidates to know for sure who placed the ad. That's why it's important to be careful to not supply personal contact information when first responding. A free email address should be sufficient until you can establish the ad poster's credibility.

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