Need help NOW!! Please (long) - Posted by Kristy

Posted by JHyre in Ohio on July 13, 2002 at 06:51:10:


Need help NOW!! Please (long) - Posted by Kristy

Posted by Kristy on July 12, 2002 at 01:28:43:

I will try to explain as best as possible, any help or pointing in the right direction would be a great help!!
A friend of ours just rented a house under the assumption he would be able to purchase it. He’s been in it less than a month and paid this so called owner over $5,000. His receipt for earnest money was hand printed on the back of a business card. (June 19, 2002) Also, There was a strange hole on one of the back windows that someone used to get into the property. My friends did not notice this till after they were moved in.
Now on July 1st he gets a notice from the Landlord stating they have to move, they are being evicted! My friends did alittle research only to find out that the man they rented from is not the owner of record. That’s when they called me. I did some more searching and found that the property was scheduled to go to Foreclosure Auction on July 8, 2002. It was too late for me to call the Trustee to see if it really went to auction. My guess is it did!
My friends have a copy of a blank lease agreement. No numbers or dates filled in accept the very first paragraph states “contract 600325 is good for the term of 1 month.” the rest of the contract has semi normal wording, but the blank spaces are blank and there are no signatures.
NOW after doing more research on this so called Landlord, I find that he has placed liens on 3 properties (Not on my friends property) just days before they go to foreclosure. Plus, he has these liens notorized in a different county, but they end up getting recorded in the county where the properties are. This seems strange to me.
I also found a document where he signed as a witness a Declaration of Homestead for some people that had just had their property foreclosed by a 2nd lien holder. Then the guy also filed a lien against the property the day after he witnessed the Homestead document. Seemed strange since the property had already been to auction and sold.
With this “shakey” Information, what direction should my friend take? Who should they contact and what can they do? The house is only 1 year old, so my guess is that that bank got it back at foreclosure if it did go to sale. Do you think my friends can make an agreement with the bank? I would like to point them in the right direction and help them get their money back. Any help or suggestions ou can give would be greatly appreciated…
My friends and I feel that this guy had no real interest in the property, knew it was vacant and going to foreclosure, broke into the property, had keys made and then rented it to them. Knowing he could get their money and then try to evict them before they found out about the foreclosure. He has no grounds for eviction, they have done everything they are supposed to do and even made a payment to him just before the 1st of July.
I told them to call the Trustee tomorrow to see if the property was sold at auction, I will know more about that tomorrow.

Re: Need help NOW!! Please (long) - Posted by Nate(DC)

Posted by Nate(DC) on July 12, 2002 at 21:54:05:


If your friend have not moved out yet, tell them DON’T! Possession is not nine-tenths of the law, but it’s a big part. Tenants can’t be evicted without proper notice and process, and it sounds like this guy has neither (not to mention that there’s some question as to whether or not he owns the house). Even if they signed an invalid lease with someone who wasn’t authorized to rent the property to them, and the house was subsequently foreclosed, they will most likely be treated as “tenants” and they will have some rights. If they were in DC they would have an extremely large number of rights.

Also, your friends might want to talk to a lawyer. They’ll need it.


Re: Need help NOW!! Please (long) - Posted by brad

Posted by brad on July 12, 2002 at 09:08:46:

did your friend actually vacate the house? not a lawyer but just curious. sounds like the “is not” land lord is not stupid since he has left the contract blank. hard to catch but usually when you hear of these guys getting in trouble its for tax evasion.