Report: #974694

Complaint Review:

  • Submitted: Tue, November 27, 2012
  • Updated: Fri, November 30, 2012
  • Reported By: RetiredLawyer — Pittsburgh Pennsylvania United States of America

    United States of America Dan Ursu, London UK and Veslui Romania luxury beach house FL vacation rental internet

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Owner of VRBO LIsting #320991

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We  responded  to a Vacation Rentals By Owner   VRBO #320991 via  email  for  a Florida  luxury  beach  house for a  family  vacation. Dan Ursu  contacted  us  by  email  and  offered  the house  for  less  rent  than  the  website  showed,  but  we  were  to  wire  transfer  the  money  within 72  hours  to  a  London Barclay  bank  account. Only  then  would  he  provide  the 'property  access  data'  and  name  of  the local contact. Being  suspicious of  this  demand  for  all  the  rental  fee  up  front  to  be  wired  to  England, I  contacted  the  Fraud  Unit  of  VRBO . They  confirmed  that  the  whole  thing  was  a  scam.  We  have  rented  for  many  years  with  VRBO,  and  have  never  had  a  VRBO  website 'phished'  so that  without our  knowledge,  our  legitimate  inquiry  to  VRBO  instead  was  diverted  to Dan Ursu  and  his  fraudulent operation  in Vaslui, Romania.. (and  by  the  way Dan  advertises  that  he  is a  web  site  designer...)  My  advice:  do  not  ever  send  any  payment whatsoever   on a  VRBO  or  HomeAway  rental  without  calling  the  Fraud  unit  to  make  sure  you  are  not  dealing  with  a  crook. And  did  I  mention  that  Ursu   fraudulently  advertised  the  house  as  being  in  Florida,  when  in  fact  it  is  in  Alabama ?? I  am  so  glad  VRBO's  fraud  unit  saved  us  from  flying  6  people  to this   nonexistent  vacation  house  in  the  Florida  keys...
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 11/27/2012 07:07 PM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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Updates & Rebuttals


#1 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Owner of VRBO LIsting #320991

AUTHOR: Cairn - (United States of America)

I am the owner of the property listing # 320991 my name is Cairn Boucher.  VRBO/Homeaway and I are doing whatever we can to prevent this from happening again.  The person who complained offered some very good advise for all renters.  Always talk personally to the person who is handling the reservation. The phone number should be on the website.  Verify the number with any number given in the email communications.  Verify by other means that the property exist and be very weary  of anyone asking you to wire money overseas for a rental in the US.  There are some US properties owned by foreign people but they usually have a US booking agent. Anyone renting property in Florida is required to have a license to do so. Ask for their license number and verify it  with the Florida Business site.  The site should give a mailing address for that person as well.

My houses are actually located in the Marathon area of the Florida Keys.  My Company name is American Paradise. Every email I send out has my full name and personal website as well as 2 telephone numbers.

To clear up some confusion: In November VRBO & Homeaway was merging their database of houses.  Both websites had their own numbering systems and there were overlaps. For a short while my Florida Keys house advertised on Homeaway as property ID #320991 showed up as a house in Alabama.  This problem has now been fixed.

The scammer used the  name Dan Ursu as the name for the bank account in London at the Barclay Bank for the wire.   The person behind this is just trying to scam unsuspecting people.  As an owner this distresses me greatly.  I do not take a reservation unless I have spoken with the person sometime during the reservation process.    My toll free "888" can also be verified through 800 long distance directory assistance as belonging to American Paradise based out of Virginia.   For those interested in my properties, you can confirm my ownership of any of my properties through a search of Monroe County real estate records, calling the Chamber of Commerce of Marathon, or talking with the City of Marathon licensing department.
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