16 Real Life Craigslist Deals That Didn’t Go Exactly As Planned

Photo Credit: Wikimedia CC/Pixabay

There are some sketchy people out there. Unfortunately, almost all of them have access to the Internet. Who hasn’t had a bizarre encounter while trying to buy/sell something on Craigslist? These 16 AskReddit users sure had some encounters worth sharing.

#1. They’re In The Walls

Wanted a hamster. Found “free hamsters” on Craigslist. Called the phone number and asked “do you still have any hamsters left?” The lady replied “Oh yeah, I just found some.” ….did I hear that right? I must have misheard it. When I arrived at her house, there were several cages filled with hamsters.

She wasn’t an intentional animal hoarder. She started out with two or three hamsters. But one of the hamsters escaped, and it was pregnant. They started breeding in her walls like rodents, and every time she would find one, she would put it in a cage. When I arrived at her house, there were about 100 hamsters – in the walls, under the couch. Her house was infested with hamsters. She was genuinely overwhelmed and had no idea how to take care of the problem.

I gave her the phone number for a small animal rescue. They removed all the hamsters. I adopted two, Peanut and Teeny Bean. Teeny Bean had a massive facial tumor, one black eye, and one white eye (he was born without one and his eyeball socket filled with some kind of gel). The vet said these were cosmetic and he was otherwise fine. He was the ugliest hamster ever, and he loved to snuggle.”

#2. I Really Wanted The N64

“I went to buy a N64 with a ton of games and a few controllers for $100, he told me to meet him at a Walmart not far from my school, so I went after the school day. He told me that morning that he had a cherry red mustang and to meet him at it at 3 o’clock. I pulled into the Walmart and there has to be three or four cop cars around a cherry red Mustang. The guy was sitting on the curb while they took out a bunch of shit from his car. He had like two pounds of marijuana on him and some other stuff.

I was sad, I really wanted the N64.”

#3. Anger Management Issues

“I foolishy let a strange guy come to my house to buy a used iPad, I advertised on Craigslist, for his son. He handed me $40 less in cash than I asked in my ad, saying it was all the cash he had, and that he figured it was a fair price. When I refused to accept what he offered, he became irate, red in the face, slapped my table with his palm, said I was being greedy, and that everyone selling on Craigslist “negotiates” their asking price. I tried to calm him down by saying that I had only had the ad in for one day, and I would be glad to call him if I couldn’t sell it for my asking price. He angrily decided he still wanted it, and left to go to his bank to get the $40, slamming my door behind him so hard that the house shook. As soon as he left, I texted him not to come back, because I had changed my mind about selling the iPad after all. He texted me back apologizing, but I never responded. I felt really relieved that I got him out of my house, and also, really stupid for allowing him to come in.”

#4. Someone Call The Exterminator

“Not terribly wrong, but my gf and I arranged to buy a couch off of a couple in a fairly bad neighborhood. After a hassle of trying to find the place we get in the apartment, the couch is in REALLY good condition, and it was retail listed for $1200 we were paying $500. They were moving the next day and really needed to sell it. As I’m carrying one of the sections of the couch out with the guy i see a bug scuttle acrossed the couch. The guy flicks it off with a quickness. And looks at me with the most apprehensive stare ever. Long story short the couch was absolutely infested with roaches, like I’m talking thousands INSIDE THE COUCH. They knew.”

#5. You Are Kidnapped

“A friend was selling a graphing calculator and arranged to meet the buyer at a shopping center. The buyer wanted to test it out, but it didn’t have batteries. My friend agreed to ride to a grocery store with him to pick up batteries. On the way back to where they originally met, buyer took the calculator to test it out. He plays with it for a minute, agrees it is in good condition, and passes it back to my friend. On the screen, the buyer had typed “you are kidnapped”. My friend finishes reading it, buyer locks doors and speeds up. Friend panics. Then the buyer stops, laughs, gives my friend money, let’s him out and tells him to be more careful. Almost a Raymond K. Hessle kind of thing I guess.”

#6. The Things One Will Do For $20

“I went to buy a semi-rare videogame (Final Fantasy Tactics, before it became a Greatest Hit). Met this girl in a Wendys parking lot, she gave me the cd case. I opened it, and it was empty. I demanded my $20 back, she looked at me and said if I did anything other than leave, she would lie and say I assaulted her. I pulled out my phone and started to pretend to record her (my cell at the time had no camera) and she started stumbling around, pretending I had attacked her. After a minute if this silliness, our eyes met and I think she realized how ridiculous this was getting, and gave me my money back.”

#7. PIVOT!!

“Two of my roommates went to purchase a couch from someone living on the third floor of an apartment building. They paid for the couch but, somewhere between the 2nd and 3rd floors, got it stuck so badly in the stairwell they decided to cut their losses and just leave it there.”

#8. He Thinks I’M the Serial Killer

“I was looking for a chest freezer to convert into a kegerator, so a used freezer would be ideal as I had to make modifications anyway. I could tell from the photo the freezer was in an unfinished basement. The guy said he was moving and ‘this is the last item left’ (meaning: there is nothing else in the house.)

I’m a big guy.. 6’5, 220 lb. Also, I have a concealed weapons permit which I use in such situations. I set up the meeting and, armed, go meet the guy. Pretty much just as shady as I thought it was going to be, but he was cool enough. We were moving it out of he basement and just as we were loading it into the trailer, I had to move around and left it up higher.. when I did my t-shirt lifted, and he saw that I was armed.

Instant role reversal. Now he thinks I’m the serial killer! He instantly got quiet and nervous. He had previously agreed to do an ‘in person paypal’ mobile to mobile. He gave me his email and I sent him payment. It wasn’t showing up right away and he said “Oh well thats fine I know it will clear, have a good day good bye!” just like that and walked to his car and drove away (appreciating the blue sky, the white clouds and feeling the most alive he’s felt in a long time, I’m sure).

Two days later I get an email “hey the payment never showed up.. if you don’t mind it terribly could you resend?”. Turns out in his fear he’d given me the wrong email address.”

#9. Wearing ONLY This

“I was selling a pair of gogo boots on CL, and I had a guy tell me he would purchase them if I modeled in nothing but the boots for him.”


“I use to grow vegetables indoors in my apartment in college hydroponically. I DID NOT (though no one believes me), grow weed.

Anyway, I graduate and get a house with plenty of land so I can grow outdoors and sell my old HPS lamps on craigslist. Guy who picks it up is your typical 18 year old wanna be gangster pot head.

About 4 months later I see him on the news having been arrested for operating a grow house…..less than a quarter mile from a police station AND school.”

#11. Preggo Ladies Be Crazy

“I once tried to sell a used high-end stroller on Craigslist in NYC. I’ve sold a ton of shit on Craigslist for years and years, but I’ve never dealt with people like these pregnant moms. Super picky. 100s of emails back and forth. Asking to repeatedly return to my apartment to see the stroller again and again before making a decision. Never showed up to meet. And complaining about the price, which was low.”

#12. Ass Stain

“My desk/office chair broke. I called the manufacturer and they sent me a new part for it, but it would be a few weeks until it got there. I didn’t want to use a hard, uncomfortable chair for two weeks so I got on CL And found a guy selling an office chair for $15 near me. The pic looked good, I called him and he still had it. I got to his place and when I arrived he was outside cleaning his car. He took me into the garage and showed me the chair. It had a huge stain down the middle of the seat like he had shit the chair or sat it naked and let his juices flow into it. I declined to buy it and when he asked why I told him I doubt anyone will buy a chair with his ass stain on it.”

#13. Missionary Work In Nigeria

“I was trying to sell my old laptop on CL. I was flooded with scam emails saying, “I would like to purchase this item for my brother/uncle/nephew/etc. who is studying/volunteering/doing missionary work in Nigeria. Please send your bank account number and information so I may wire transfer funds”. Seriously I got like 100 of these emails all saying some variation of that story. They were all OBVIOUSLY very fake emails. Anyway, I finally get a legit sounding message saying this guy wants to buy it. We meet at a Starbucks and he checks out the laptop and asks some questions, seems satisfied so he gets out his cash. As he hands it to me he says, “Thanks so much, my brother is over in Nigeria for his studies and really needed a computer so this will be a great gift!” I accidentally burst out laughing, and he just looked at me like I was a crazy bitch and left.”

#14. Wait, You Weren’t Trying To Rip Me Off?

“My buddy responded to an ad for a cheap ass car. He took it for a test drive and it ran well, so they agreed to a price of $200. After the money changed hands, the seller said he will go inside to get the extra keys and bring the car around. About 2 minutes later the car passes by and continues down the street. My buddy freaks the fuck out and gives chase, unfortunately the car gets away and he is left to go back to the house and see if he can sort it out.

As it turned out, the car that passed by was just an innocent motorist with the same car merrily going about his business. It’s very fortunate my buddy never caught up to him. I could only imagine the seller back at the house, wondering why someone would hand him $200 and take off running.

He did get the car after all and it ran for 2 years.”

#15. Shoulda Stayed Outta Dat Pic Tho…

“About 4 years ago I was trying to sell my Mazda Miata on Craigslist. My friend took some pictures of the car for me and put them online. All of the people that I had talked to on the phone were older men who seemed to have not read the description at all. Asking me basic questions that were in the ad that I posted. It seemed a little weird because I guess I was expecting someone like myself to be drawn to that car (19 year old females). Anyway, the calls started getting creepier and creepier until final I had a man call who wanted to meet to see it. I was trying to find a public place but he kept insisting we meet at my house. He wouldn’t even talk to me about anything related to the car and just kept asking where I lived and what my cross streets were (as if I’d be dumb enough to meet him at my house). After it got really weird, I hung up on him and he kept calling back asking where I lived. I went online to remove the ad and realized my friend had taken a picture that had me in it. That explained a lot.”

#16. Payback Is A Bitch

“I wouldn’t say horribly wrong but at one point I drove about two hours out of my way to buy a limited edition red Wii. Corresponded with the guy maybe every half hour until pickup once I was on my way. Waited an additional hour after arriving. Guy was a no show and didn’t seem to want to answer his phone. Tried calling back for days afterwards. Month goes by and a I decided to flip a DSi XL I got in a trade and sure enough the guy calls in response to the ad I put up. Thankfully I marked the number in my phone. Two wrongs do not make a right but it sure as hell felt good pulling the same nonsense on him. Funny enough I asked him to meet about a block from where I was living at the time, just close enough to provide a window view of my revenge. Hilarity ensued, the guy didn’t even make it half an hour before throwing a very public temper tantrum.”

Ahhhh, Craigslist. Smh.