Imagine going on vacation only to come home and find another family living in your house.
That’s exactly what happened to a Beaufort, South Carolina, woman. When Katherine Lang returned to her home Sunday, she found someone else’s laundry whirring in the washing machine, dogs and a cat, none of which belonged to her, were walking around the house and two women were talking inside.
“I said, ‘What are you doing in my house?’” Lang told The Beaufort Gazette. “It became clear to me what happened.”
So what the heck happened?
The woman who moved into the home had been scammed, told the house was for rent at a good price, and so she jumped on it.
Tyggra Shepherd told the newspaper she moved from Kentucky with her husband and needed a place to live temporarily until they found a permanent home. She responded to a Facebook ad placed by a woman named Rosie Ruggles.
The three-bedroom house was advertised for $850 a month, a great price, Shepherd thought, who had sent her two children to live with family in Kentucky in the meantime.
“I was so crushed when I found out it was a scam,” Shepherd told the Gazette. “… Finding a place to live in Beaufort is hard when you need something you can afford and still raise a family adequately.”
Lang had actually bought the house in October but had still been living in her previous house while she waited for it to sell. After going on a 10-day vacation, she went to the new home to check on the pipes following a hard freeze.
Shepherd said the ad was very believable, and she wired $1,150 for the fake lease. She was told to use the unlocked back door to start moving her belongings into the house because the person delivering the keys had been arrested, the Gazette reported.
Shepherd has been given a timetable to be able to move out of the house, and Lang has decided to move into her new home if her current home hasn’t sold.
With Shepherd in her house Sunday, Lang called a number for Ruggles, and a person who answered hung up after Lang identified herself.
The person Shepherd communicated with on Facebook blocked her on the social media site and also blocked her number, the Gazette reported.