How To Find A Place To Live On Craigslist + Scary Personal Experiences

26th December 2014

Before I moved to Chicago, I had to find a place to live. I was a little hesitant to use Craigslist at first, but I wasn’t sure where else I could try.

I was looking on Craigslist for a while and it didn’t take too long to find a place, but I feel like I should have done more searching to find somewhere closer to work, etc.Find out how to find a place to live on Craigslist, plus learn about a crazy experience I had!

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Tip #1: DON’T EVER GO ALONE TO CHECK OUT A PLACE.

You’ll read why I put that as my first tip at the end of this article. If you do decide to go by yourself for some crazy reason, definitely make sure to check in with a friend before and after you check out the place.

Or you could just leave your phone on in your pocket while your friend is on the other line. There are some crazy people out there and you can never be too safe.

Tip #2 Don’t overpay for a room.

I’ve seen some people price rooms a ridiculous amount on Craigslist. I’ve seen some rooms on Craigslist that look like people were practicing rituals in. Which is all fine and dandy if they want to do so, but I personally wouldn’t want to stay in a room that looks like that.

Find out how to find a place to live on Craigslist, plus learn about a crazy experience I had!

Tip #3 Is the room exactly what you need?

Make sure the room is furnished before giving a deposit/rent if you need it furnished. You should check out before officially deciding to live at the place obviously.

Tip #4 Do you get along with the other people who live in the home?

I personally think it matters to connect in some way with the person or people you’ll be living with. I’ve liked a house before and totally did not connect with the lady in the house, so I decided it was not a good fit.

Tip #5 Is it close to where you need to be?

This might seem like common sense, but make sure it is close to work and school. I tried to find a place that was right in the middle of my jobs and work.

I am actually moving in a week and my new place will in the middle of all the hotspots. I will be close to my mom, grandma, and other relatives as well. I also like the new area I’ll be living in because there are many more things to do.

I’ve met a few people through Craigslist for potential living situations. One of them was kind of a scary situation, simply because the guy gave off a horrible vibe. He then proceeded to take me to the basement and showed me my room and shut the door behind us. I’m just a really paranoid person. The ad said it was a really nice ‘European’ family but it ended up only being a guy. Why did I go here without anyone but myself? I have no idea. Pretty dumb of me. I learned my lesson.

Find out how to find a place to live on Craigslist, plus learn about a crazy experience I had!

Here are my go-to ways to having a healthy and fit body:

  • 14 Day Lean Meal Plan: Find out how to lose the weight for good
  • 21 Day Fix Extreme: A more intense version of 21 Day Fix, how I achieved my results
  • Ibotta: How to get cash back on grocery, clothing, household items and more 
  • How Not To Die: A book to educate you on nutrition and health
  • Fitbit: Stay motivated and on track with this fitness tracker

Have you ever used Craigslist for finding a room to rent or a place to stay?

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12 thoughts on “How To Find A Place To Live On Craigslist + Scary Personal Experiences

  1. femmefrugality

    So many times when I’ve looked on Craigslist for housing lately it’s turned out to be a scam. A pretty blatant and transparent scam, but still has left me with an icky feeling. I’ve definitely used it to find rentals in the past, though.

    I was dumb and did the solo trip once, too! Okay, a few times, but I only got creeped out once. There was a dingy curtain separating the stairs from the upstairs and downstairs apartment (no door,) a smashed up oven (asked the landlord if he’d replace it before we moved in, to which he replied, “Those things are expensive,”) and just an awful vibe. I’m glad you made it out of that basement alive! I’d be freaking out!

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  2. Traci

    I have found almost every place I’ve rented on Craigslist. It’s always been in bigger cities with plenty of options to choose from, so weeding out the weird/scam situations is easy enough. I’m careful about looking at places by myself too–I simply don’t do it!

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  5. Tali

    Oh my goodness, I could not agree more with #1! Craigslist can be creepy! bring backup!! When i rented i almost always relied on Craigslist, and it worked out for the most part. I don’t recommend renting a single room in a house of strangers – #4. Nowadays, HotPads and Zillow offer less spammy rental results for alternatives. My advice, is ALWAYS take date-stamped photos of damages during the move-in walk through. Those photos saved me money at the end of my leases many times!

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  6. Millennial Boss

    I’ve used Craigslist to find summer housing for an internship and then recently to find a permanent apartment. The summer housing worked out fine although we did have a few false leads from scammers. Recently, I also went to two houses alone to check out a listing. The first one, the guy was a nice 23 y.o and not creepy. The second guy had his family with him and it was also not creepy. I brought a knife in my back pocket to both visits just in case (ha) but it ended up being fine. I honestly wouldn’t recommend anyone going to a listing alone though. I had to because I just moved to the area. My advice would be that if you get creepy vibes, just get out. Sometimes we continue along in creepy situations because we’re afraid of being rude but it’s safer to just get out immediately and cut your losses.
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