Skip to comments.Man uses obscure law to claim ownership of $300k home in upscale Texas town... for just $16
Posted on 07/20/2011 11:19:26 AM PDT by Do Not Make Fun Of His Ears
If someone you knew claimed to have bought a new house for $16, you'd probably expect it to be a rundown hovel.
But for Kenneth Robinson, that princely sum could see him as the new owner of a $300,000 home in an well-manicured part of Flower Mound, Texas.
On June 17, Mr Robinson took advantage of a little known Texas law to move into the abandoned home.
The house had been in foreclosure for more than a year and its owner walked away. Then, the mortgage company went bust.
After months of research, Mr Robinson used the obscure law 'adverse possession', filled out some paperwork costing just $16, and moved some of his belongings into the home.
Under the law, if someone moves into an abandoned home they have exclusive negotiating rights with the original owner.
If the owner wants them to leave, they have to pay off the mortgage debt on the home and the bank has to file a complicated lawsuit to get them evicted.
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
Yeah someone here said yesterday that this legal concept was in order to establish fencelines.
I'd rather be in a house with running water and the thermostat set at 75.
It may not be possible to find who ‘holds the paper’ on the home. During the foreclosure fiasco last year when there was a temporary hold on foreclosures in some states - it was shown that one reason for such a hold was that it was impossible to show who ‘holds the paper’ as some mortgage companies and mortgage security companies had gone belly up - the computer and paper records could not be located and may not even exist - destroyed. And in a number of cases the company servicing the mortgage had no clear documentation to show that they had the right to service the mortgage.
As always, from the news reports on a legal issue it is impossible to understand all the facts.
As a Texas land title lawyer, there are several types of adverse possession, and it is not an “obscure law.” Depending on whether he obtained a written document of title, pays taxes, uses and possesses the property, title by adverse possession can become vested in as little as 3 years and as much as 25 years of actual possession.
I would say the record owner of this house could bring eviction proceedings immediately and get this guy out.
Lots of mixed reactions on this thread. My initial reaction was “Good for him!”, but my amended reaction is “This ain’t over by a long shot, now that it’s hit the news.”
I wouldn’t be surprised if this is the impetus for new (or amended) legislation about adverse possession in Texas and elsewhere.
But if anyone else is claiming ownership rights to the house they should offer Mr. Robinson some walking away money to avoid a protracted court battle. 10% to 15% of the appraised value should work nicely.
This whole story reeks of BS! Why would the owner of the house abandon the property because his mortgage company went bankrupt. I could see it if the owner went bankrupt. If MY mortgage company went bankrupt I would in fat city because I wouldn’t have to send payments in and who would kick me out as long as I paid the county taxes? Total BS.
The original "owner" walked away from the mortgage. Then the mortgage company went bust.
If he has title to the property, he’d be wise to obtain an owners title insurance policy and then put the house up for sale ASAP. Another three times and he can buy a really nice pad.
This is hilarious; the beneficiaries of the diversity-induced housing collapse are......diverse people...!
If I set fire to the ship I’m sailing on, usually that’s bad for me —I burn, then drown.
But here —they set china on the Captain’s table, then dine in fine style.
In CA you would have had to pay the property taxes for five years you live there.
Abandoned houses fail the Upscale test.
No matter how big they are.
If the guy so much as cuts the grass and keeps shingles on it, that is better than the abandoned state it was in before.
The people with standing to sue, are the people who walked away.
The people on the housing bubble threads have been explaining how this will play out for years. Here are abandoned homes being awarded to people who move in and maintain them appearing just as predicted. Sort of a couterpart to the “unexpected” take Keynesians have on everything.
You’d never get title insurance.
you post like nOOb...
The banker’s lobby must have been sleeping in Texas, most states require much more than 3 years.
This guy should have kept his mouth shut because somebody owns that mortgage and they have better lawyers than he can hire and they will put him through the wringer now that this is out in the public domain. And you can bet the loophole will be closed.
Remember TANSTAAFL. Especially when lawyers are in charge.
why would someone be so stupid as to TELL EVERYONE when they do this?
My take also. This reminds me of the threads (where I was attacked on a regular basis) about how all of the people who didn't pay there mortgage would now own there homes free and clear because someone in a law firm signed for someone else. It's more a fantasy then reality.
Any one know history on this?
If he did all his own research then he surely knows the tax ramifications already and has calculated them into his plans.
This fellow does not seem to be dumb. I suspect he will be able to afford his new residence, even to upkeep.
“You post like a liberal.”
Actually, I post like a ‘real-man’ that won’t convict or accuse someone by looking at their picture. Perhaps when you grow up, you will reach your goal of becoming a real man.
It’s people like you that give real Conservatives a bad name. What if the guy were white?