Victorious Homeowners Detail Confrontation With Squatters

( – Recent stories detailing shocking attempts by squatters to claim someone’s property as their own have prompted others to come forward with their experiences. Two elderly men spent part of their life savings to purchase three family homes in Coney Island in early 2020. They planned to rent the properties out after remodeling them, but their plans were interrupted by the pandemic. One of the men was stuck in Pakistan after the United States issued a travel ban, while the other stayed at his home in Atlanta.

Toward the end of the year, one of the men returned to New York and found squatters living in all three houses. One of the squatters had taken up residence and rented out the other two homes. Police told the men to take the issue up in court, but the system was facing a major backlog. To make matters worse, the Department of Buildings (DOB) continuously issued fines to the men for code violations, completely disregarding the fact that the squatters would not let them in to make repairs. One of the men discovered that the squatters had built makeshift walls to add more bedrooms inside the homes, which was illegal. He notified the DOB, and the squatters were finally removed in late 2022.

A woman in Seattle had her four-story building taken over by squatters after she moved out. She said that the intruders broke the lock on the building and claimed that they had leased it from a person on Craigslist. In Washington state, squatters can claim something as their own after 30 days of occupancy. The woman decided to do some investigative work of her own using mail that was coming to the building. She took the mail to the police, who discovered that one of the squatters had an outstanding criminal charge for “walking topless in downtown Seattle.” The woman said that it was enough to convince the police to help her remove the squatters from her building. They were charged with trespassing and warned not to return when picking up their possessions after their release from jail. Many more stories like these have become far too common in the United States.

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