Woman facing eviction in homeownership dispute

November 12, 2010 4:38:07 PM PST
A woman thought she owned her home fair and square after buying it at an auction months ago. But now she's being evicted -- caught in a foreclosure mess that could leave her homeless. That homeowner contacted Eyewitness News for help. Authorities say the homeowners' association sold the home at auction when it wasn't theirs to sell. The association's president claims they had no idea they didn't own it.

Kimberly Taylor couldn't believe the deal she got in March when she paid just $680 for a home in northwest Houston.

"It's my house and I live here," she said. "I live here with my two children."

Within two months of moving in, though, Taylor started getting letters telling her she must vacate.

"I bought this house. It's not like I owe anybody any money," Taylor said. "I don't owe anybody any money but you're still throwing me into the street. Why?"

Three days ago, the Harris County Constable's Office in Precinct 5 posted an eviction notice on Taylor's door. The constable's office tells Eyewitness News the homeowner's association sold the house but had no legal right to do so. Two months prior, constables say, Fannie Mae foreclosed on the property because the prior owner defaulted.

Capt. Dennis Kuithe says, "The sale should be set aside. The sale is no good. She needs to move out of that house."

No one from the Stone Creek homeowner's association would go on camera, but the president tells Eyewitness News "there were no records to indicate that Fannie Mae had already foreclosed on the property so our foreclosure went forward."

He tells Eyewitness News Taylor was notified and returned the $680. She denies that and claims she did her homework prior to spending the money, and that she was assured there was nothing owed on the home.

"Somebody made a mistake, this is true, but it was not me," Taylor insisted.

KTRK legal analyst Joel Androphy says when a deal seems to be too good to be true, it probably is. He says somehow Taylor should have found out someone else owned the property because of an outstanding lien. He says anyone who admittedly is a novice at purchasing property at auction should always bring with them an attorney or at least a real estate agent.


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