I made the classic mistake of not reading the terms and conditions so, as it is under 60 days from our arrival, we do not get any of the deposit back. the owner is entitled to substitute another property without notice, and, in order to complete the booking, we have to pay another fee of $500 to the owner, the balance to be be paid in cash on arrival. while it MIGHT turn out OK, I don't want to travel round the States worrying about problems when we reach NYC, especially as when I googled the company I am actually renting from (city cabin NewYork) people had had problems with them in the past. One of the problems is that all these companies are nested within each other - citycabin is within localnomad, who are on the feelnyc website. localnomad obviously don't give a damn once they have your fee, ditto feelnyc. I'm especially disappointed with TripAdvisor, who have usually been our travel bible. in fact, on one of the forums, they have a useful section on why not to rent in NY, but have no problem with having adverts for these charlatans. anyway, I acknowledge that it is my fault for not taking time to read the t&c's, but please don't make our mistake.
You've learnt a harsh lesson. I hope you can get some money back from the credit card company.
Many such websites look reputable but they do not check to see if what is being advertised is actually owned by the person advertising it or even if the listing is genuine. Its very much a case of buyer beware.
You're by no means the only one to have been scammed in such a manner and a lot of people have lost a lot of money to such crooks.
as a follow on to my previous post, please don't do as we did and book holiday apartments in New York. we were fooled by the fact that there are plenty of reputable looking websites offering this service, including some on TripAdvisor , so we didn't think to Google 'new York holiday apartments scam'. So, we've paid £170 to Local nomad, which we won't get back from them, but might possibly get back from our credit card company. Please be warned, if your thinking of doing the same thing and do a bit more research than we did.