You Can’t Make this Stuff Up

My Bad! Woman’s House Mistakenly Auctioned by Bank

 By TODD WRIGHT

You know times are tough when people are getting kicked out of their house when it’s not even for sale. That’s what happened to Anna Ramirez after she found all of her stuff out on the front lawn of her Homestead home last week and a strange man demanding she get out of his newly purchased house. The eviction came after Ramirez’s home was mistakenly auctioned off to the highest bidder by her bank, Washington Mutual (yes, we know WaMu is now Chase, but we’re in denial). Usually, you get a warning before you get the boot. A foreclosure letter, maybe a sign saying your house is up for sale. Not Ramirez, who found her belongings bashed and battered in the street. “This came out of nowhere,” Ramirez said.

“The bank took the house from right under my feet.” The man who bought the house told Ramirez he paid $87,000 for it, which shocked Ramirez, who bought the house for $260,000. What’s worse is her husband, daughter and grand children were also kicked out by Homestead and Miami-Dade police officers, said Martha Taylor, who witnessed the unexpected eviction. “I have never seen anything like it,” Taylor said. “They literally threw all her stuff on the front lawn. I didn’t sleep that night and it wasn’t even my house.” Ramirez and her family had three hours to get out of the house, police ordered. They had to stash their belongings at multiple locations and shacked up with a friend for the night as cops chained the doors of their home.

With Taylor’s help, Ramirez appeared before a judge two days later to explain what happened. “I had all my stuff scattered everywhere,” she said. “They did this in front all my neighbors. It was so embarassing.” A mistake in the Miami-Dade Clerk’s Office appears to be behind the mishap, which landed Ramirez homeless for more than 24 hours. The sale was eventually reversed by a Miami-Dade judge, allowing Ramirez to return to her old digs. Ramirez said she wants to sue for the damage to her furniture. Ramirez has lived in the house for three years and recently refinanced the home with the bank. “This shouldn’t be happening, you know, because we did the right thing,” she said. “We went step by step.”

4 Responses

  1. BoA calls it a mistake…..some would call it “criminal trespass”…

    Bank Locks Farmington Couple Out of House

    A newly engaged Farmington couple says the ‘great American dream’ turned out to be a nightmare for them after they were locked out of their own home.

    Just days after closing on their first home, Kurt Madsen and Stephanie Herbert returned from a weekend vacation to find someone had been in their home.

    “I feel violated. Someone broke into my house and I don’t know why,” Madsen said.

    The couple found the locks had been changed in the doors, leaving Madsen to break into his new home.

    “We were afraid that the previous owners came back and they were angry they were losing the house,” Herbert said.

    But it wasn’t an intruder that broke into their residence—it was someone working for a bank. Once inside, the two found a handwritten note from a property manager.

    “Dear homeowner, today we had an order to change the locks,” it read.

    It turns out the previous owner’s bank, Bank of America, ordered locks changed on the house it no longer owned. It wasn’t until 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS got involved that the couple got answers.

    In a flood of foreclosures, the case simply fell through the cracks.

    “It appears to be a mistake on our end. We will do everything possible to rectify the situation,” a spokesperson for Bank of American said in a statement.

    “It’s a relief that they are taking some sort of action, but it should not have come to that. We should not have gotten the media involved to get an answer,” Herbert said.

    Late Friday, Bank of America says they will reimburse the couple more than $300 to fix all the locks and doors on their home.

    But for Madsen and Herbert, they still want assurances from the bank that it won’t happen again.

  2. This is INSANE but is happening all the time. I live in a rental property in Scottsdale, AZ and the lender inadvertently put it on the auction list despite the owner’s BK filing and loan workout in progress. It was harrowing — people attempting to enter the home without authority, urinating on our vehicles, trespassing in the back yard. I put signs up telling them to stay off the property but there still seemed to be some sense of entitlement by these vultures to trespass on the property.

    The lender was able to stop the auction, but one man showed up thinking he bought the home and was going to change the locks on a place he doesn’t even own!

    I’m lucky because I know my rights under the law and know how to fight back. But what about all the people like the woman in this post? What happens is exactly what happened to her — your stuff illegally thrown into the street and public humiliation at the hands of our government, who is supposed to protect us.

    Scary!

  3. This —- is getting out of hand. !!! What in the world is this coming to. We need to freeze all foreclosures until somebody can figure out whats going on. And if theres money to just throw at somebody, throw it at the person who’s going to help keep these homeowners in their homes and off the street. Legally for God’s sake. If people had enough money for legal repesentation, the majority would probably lawfully remain in their homes as most of these foreclosures ARE illegal. Violating some form of federal law.

  4. “she wants to sue for the damage to her furniture”?

    IS THAT ALL? Maybe her bank can give her a toaster. Or better yet quiet title as damages for wrongful foreclosure. The foreclosure mill should have E&O insurance to cover these little glitches of the system.

    With all the lives that have been shattered by predatory lending and wrongful foreclosures, she seems to be a very forgiving person.

    With the uber banksters on the march, I guess there will always be some degree of “collateral” damage that we must accept as a culture.

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