Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Don't Own the House, Tough! Maintain it Anyway, Texas City Says.

A guy named David Englett lost his house to foreclosure in Texas a couple years ago. Which you would think means he has nothing to do with the house, right? He was evicted, he's gone, time to move on wityh his life in another house or apartment, a right?
David Englett lost this house to foreclosure two
years ago, but the city of Arlington, Texas said he
still has to maintain it. 

According to local CBS affiliate in Dallas-Fort Worth, Englett  must still mow the lawn and maintain the property at the house, say the wise city leaders of Arlington, Texas, where the house in located.

Englett was fined for not doing so, and he had to pay up in order to make a living. He had warrants out for not paying the fines, which meant they would not allow him to renew his driver's license. Which is a problem, since he makes his living as a truck driver.

He was also fined for not getting a permit to turn on the house alarm, even though the bank was the one that turned it on.

According to the Consumerist, one thing that might be going on is cash strapped towns like Arlington can't easily get revenue from banks that own foreclosed homes, so they go after former owners like Englett, who is easier to bully.

As a legal expert for the CBS station said:

If it's foreclosed, it's not his... You have to remember cities are all about grabbing money from you I mean they try anyway they can."
Arlington's excuse is Englett's name is still on the deed because the bank didn't sell the house to someone else, but that doesn't make sense because they have to know the bank owns it.

I imagine the negative publicity might prompt Arlington to reverse what they're doing with Englett, but I wonder if they are doing this to other people who don't have the benefit of publicity. And in how many other cities is this going on?

Yes, I know municipalities need revenue, but collecting money possibly illegally and definitely immorally and in an unfair manner is infuriating. Time to clean house in Arlington? And I don't mean Englett's house.

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