Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Guardian UK reports real estate agents in the U.S. flout federal law and bully tenants in foreclosure

Sasha Abramsky of the British newspaper, the Guardian, has published some solid reporting on how real estate brokers and agents bully tenants after foreclosure as though the Protecting Tenants in Foreclosure Act (PTFA) "didn't exist."

Tenants Together's report "Hidden Impact: California Renters in the Foreclosure Crisis" is cited in the piece and Program Director, Gabe Treves, was interviewed at length for the story. Abramsky will be publishing a complete Q and A with Treves in the coming weeks.

Under PTFA tenants with outstanding leases have the right to remain in their homes for the the terms of their leases (with some exceptions) and tenants with month-to-month agreements are entitled to 90-day notices. Yet, it remains the practice of foreclosing banks to hire real estate agents who mislead or intimidate tenants into leaving their homes before they have to.
It is not uncommon for tenants in these situations to come home and find intimidating, anonymous, and legally misleading, posters stuck to their doors. One such starts with "Attention!! This property has been foreclosed and is now bank-owned. The eviction process has started. The property is being monitored." The words are in bold and the text is circled for emphasis. Another begins: "To whom it may concern: We were informed this property was vacant. We have changed the locks." Another resorts to financial intimidation: "The eviction process has been started by the bank. It is in your best interest to avoid having an eviction added to your credit report. It is very difficult to rent a property with an eviction on your credit report."
Read the full article at the Guardian UK website.

No comments:

Post a Comment