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The Squatter
  #1  
Old 03-24-2020, 03:16 PM
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Ghel Ghel is offline
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Default The Squatter

We used to have this customer, let’s call him Don. Older fellow, survived exposure to agent orange in the Vietnam War. Had been retired for years when I first met him. Seemed nice. Pretty introverted.

About 4 years ago, Don bought a mobile home for his girlfriend and her kids. It was down the street from his mobile home. He paid on time. He also took out a loan for an ATV. Which, apparently, his girlfriend was using.

Last April, he died. We started dealing with two of the women in his life: his girlfriend, “Shauna,” and his niece, “Janice.” Shauna started making payments on the mobile home loan, which made sense to us since she was (and still is) living in it. Meanwhile, Janice was working with an estate attorney to get appointed personal representative of the estate.

Then all of a sudden in November, Shauna stopped making payments. Janice stepped up for a couple months to make payments, but then she stopped, too. She stopped returning my phone calls.

After a few letters and phone calls from Ted (who, you may recall, is my former branch manager who now works at the main branch), Janice agreed to have the estate pay down the loan for the mobile home and deed it to the bank.

The ATV has gone missing. We suspect Shauna sold it and used the money for herself (possibly for meth - she displays many of the signs). The bank ended up charging off the remaining balance of that loan.

My new Branch Manager and I have made several trips to the mobile home, even before the bank got it back. The place is a dump. Garbage piled on the deck. Plastic sheeting wrapped around the bottom of the trailer (presumably to keep the snow away). Our last visit, there was a fillet of fish still in the packaging laying on the deck. I get the concept of using the snow as an additional freezer in the winter, but this was laying out on the bare deck in the sun, on a warmish (for Minnesota in March) day.

Shauna doesn’t answer the door, but we’re pretty sure she’s there. Someone’s letting the dog out, at least. With the snow melting, it’s pretty gross. The dog barks from inside the house when we knock, but there’s no other response. We didn't see any sign of any kids.

We’ve mailed and left letters in the door. The last one was certified. If she refuses to sign for it, we might get it back in about a month.

Ted and BM had worked out a plan that if Shauna moved out within a month and cleaned the place up, the bank would give her $500. We hoped that would be enough incentive. When I called her after they came up with this plan, she actually answered her phone. She said it sounded good. She would come in the next day to sign an agreement and discuss the details with us. She never showed. She also stopped answering her phone.

Our next step was to get an attorney involved and start the eviction process. Because if a corporation owns a property and they want to evict someone (even a squatter who has no property rights), they have to hire an attorney and go to court. The process could take months.

But now that’s been put on hold, too, since the governor has put a halt to foreclosures and evictions in Minnesota while we deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. So basically this whole thing is on hold for at least the next several weeks.
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Old 03-24-2020, 06:45 PM
Mental_Mouse Mental_Mouse is offline
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From the sound of it, there is a significant chance that the coronavirus will sort out your problem for you. If she's living in a mobile home, she'll need to go shopping. Let alone the drug issues.
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Old 03-26-2020, 07:06 PM
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taxguykarl taxguykarl is offline
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This sort of this was not unheard of during the foreclosure crisis--keep the ball rolling through continuances and appeals to have a residence essentially rent-free.
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Old 03-27-2020, 11:14 PM
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From the sounds of things, who the hell wants it back
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Old 03-30-2020, 02:12 PM
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Ghel Ghel is offline
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Quote:
Quoth taxguykarl View Post
This sort of this was not unheard of during the foreclosure crisis--keep the ball rolling through continuances and appeals to have a residence essentially rent-free.
Yeah. She's essentially been living there rent-free for over 3 months, and that'll continue at least 3 more months, since eviction typically takes 90 days or more.

Quote:
Quoth telecom_goddess View Post
From the sounds of things, who the hell wants it back
That's why we were trying to give her money to clean it out herself before she leaves. It didn't surprise us that much that she stopped responding to us. Drugs are a hell of a thing.

BM has suggested we might get more from the sale if we paid someone to remove the trailer and take it away.
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Old 03-30-2020, 03:51 PM
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Quote:
Quoth Ghel View Post
... to remove the trailer and take it away.
I wonder if she'll pop out when it hits the crusher.
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Old 04-03-2020, 03:08 AM
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Quote:
Quoth dalesys View Post
I wonder if she'll pop out when it hits the crusher.
Someone dozed off in watching Goldfinger once too often
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  #8  
Old 06-08-2020, 03:41 PM
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Ghel Ghel is offline
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We're trying to get things moving to evict this squatter. The courts have at least partially re-opened, so our Branch Manager contacted an attorney about starting eviction. The attorney said he has to look into whether it's even an option yet. Both the Minnesota stay-at-home order and the federal CARES Act have put a stop to evictions and foreclosures, and while Minnesota is starting to re-open, the CARES Act is still in place. There's already been several lawsuits, he says, over foreclosures during this time, so we want to proceed carefully.

Meanwhile, we've had no contact from Shauna, the squatter. Which is no surprise. BM drove past the trailer last week, and he said there's an even larger pile of garbage bags on the deck. Blech.
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  #9  
Old 06-08-2020, 07:02 PM
Buzzard Buzzard is online now
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Getting the place cleaned up by yonder squatter... ain't gonna happen. Just figure on extensive trash removal, and ...repair of the mobile home. (Meth, it does the damage GOOD)

If the bank is still willing to pony up cash to get her out, you'd need to have the repo team THERE ON SITE, and hand over the check as she's LEAVING. (All her 'stuff' out, and her little dog too) Ideally, the rig would be hooked up for travel BEFORE handing over the check.

Quite simply, if the rig is still there, she'll be back. Meth-heads don't make good house guests, and are always looking for some place new to crash. If nothing else, she'd ...remember something she thought was still in there, and you're back where you started.
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  #10  
Old 06-08-2020, 08:27 PM
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That mobile home is done for. It'll cost as much to fix it as it's worth. It will need to be tested to see if she was cooking meth in it. If she has, it would be cheaper for the bank to destroy it just for the liability issues from all the chemicals.
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