On the street where I live there are at least four squats, typically most people will not take notice because the squatters are not the homeless poor, these squatters are much more sophisticated.
They arrive at the subject home in white work trucks, contractors and labourers, looking very official, but make no mistake they are simply squatters.
I have several real examples for the time I have spent investigating these empty homes.
First, the homeowners leave the home normally as a result of default on the mortgage.
The people involved in these squats are lawyers, loan servicers, construction workers and real estate agents.
These professionals can use the system to make as if they have the colour of law to occupy an empty home, after all, the title of the house became Clouded and it is not certain who, other than the homeowner who vacated the home, is the owner real, legal owner.
The 11th Circuit Court, which is the court in our district had become very strict with the assignments and the Notes which a homeowner signs when he takes out a loan to buy a home.
The housing bust exposed the fraud that the banks committed which had the effect of ruining the title of the property, and the ownership of the home becomes questionable.
The banks and the servicers do not wish to dispute the cases in court as the court will legally stop them, especially if the homeowner defends correctly. The bank could lose the case and the owner gets a free house.
What worries me most is that the Alcoholic Anonymous may have plans to occupy these empty homes. I have seen their truck circling the area where that charming house on my block.
The squatters will typically put a dog on the property, but first, they put up a fence, these people are flush with money.
I have seen the squatters advertise a boat rental space, makes the property appear occupied by a real owner.
The squatters are renting the homes month to month, but they are not the authorised owner, many times the property tax is still in the name of the legal homeowner, who vacated the home.
This thriving business is booming in Florida at large, the police and the other authorities and not wise enough to figure out the crime.