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Soldier in Iraq Loses Home Over $800 Debt

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posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:13 PM
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Soldier in Iraq Loses Home Over $800 Debt


motherjones.com

Michael Clauer is a captain in the Army Reserve who commanded over 100 soldiers in Iraq. But while he was fighting for his country, a different kind of battle was brewing on the home front. Last September, Michael returned to Frisco, Texas, to find that his homeowners' association had foreclosed on his $300,000 house—and sold it for $3,500.
(visit the link for the full news article)

Mod Edit: Breaking News Forum Submission Guidelines – Please Review This Link.



[edit on 1/7/2010 by Mirthful Me]




posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:13 PM
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Unbelievable !! This soldier lost his home while deployed in Iraq for an $800.00 dept. There should be laws in place that forbids forclosures or property seizures while being deployed overseas at least give military personnel a fighting chance to confront their debtors. Instead there are laws in place as in Texas where a homeowners' associations can foreclose on homes without a court order, no matter the size of the debt. Lawyers !! The epidemy of the Earth.

motherjones.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:27 PM
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There are such laws. I didn't read the linked article, but I don't believe this for a second. First off, why would they sell it for $3500? They could easily have gotten $200,000 or more even at fire sale prices. Second, a foreclosure takes place in court, to be valid he has to be served the notice to appear. They couldn't have served him if he was at war. If someone else was served on his behalf, then surely that someone would have told the courts that he was deployed and the whole proceeding would have been delayed.

Lastly, a young soldier doesn't make enough money to have a $300,000 home paid for. The first lien would have gone to taxes, the second to the mortgage companies, and the last one to the Home Owner's association. The first and second lien holders would not have allowed the home to be sold so cheaply.

And lastly, lastly, lol! It would have cost the association more than $800 in filing fees and attorney fees to initiate a foreclosure. Knowing that the market is down and the house would likely be sold for less than was owed, there is no way they would have initiated a foreclosure.



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:28 PM
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reply to post by L.HAMILTON
 


wow i've heard about homeowners assoc. aren't those people sort of like a neighborhood watch that's gone mafia? what are they and where do they get authority from?



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:28 PM
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Originally posted by L.HAMILTON


Unbelievable !! This soldier lost his home while deployed in Iraq for an $800.00 dept. There should be laws in place that forbids forclosures or property seizures while being deployed overseas at least give military personnel a fighting chance to confront their debtors. Instead there are laws in place as in Texas where a homeowners' associations can foreclose on homes without a court order, no matter the size of the debt. Lawyers !! The epidemy of the Earth.

motherjones.com
(visit the link for the full news article)


There is. You have to read the whole article.


There are a bevy of laws that are supposed to protect servicemembers from losing their homes or jobs while they're on active duty, including the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). The homeowners' association's lawyer filed an affidavit wrongly claiming that neither of the Clauers was on active duty, says Barbara Hale, the couple's lawyer. Hale is seeking to have the court reverse the foreclosure and declare it "null and void," she says.


The HOA falsely filled out forms.

I question the validity of this article/source anyways. The site listed is the only site with the story. All other sites link back to this one. Im really not sure I believe it. The MSM usually reports these major news items. This would be a major one.

[edit on May 28th 2010 by greeneyedleo]



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:31 PM
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reply to post by getreadyalready
 


You should have read the article - it addresses all of the points you made.

As of now, it's in the courts. The lawyer believes the foreclosure will be overturned (determined null and void) but that does not save the family from the court expenses which are going to be huge. This whole situation is maddening.

The wife - where was her support system? The Depression should have been watched closer and she should have had help... Sad story.

ETA:
GEL was just a bit faster on the post response... the quote is basically what I was referencing.

[edit on 28-5-2010 by LadySkadi]



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:33 PM
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Originally posted by LadySkadi
reply to post by getreadyalready
 


The wife - where was her support system? The Depression should have been watched closer and she should have had help... Sad story.


If she didnt reach out, then there is only so much people can do. They clearly didnt live on base where there is a plethora of help available. Trust me. I know. I went thru 4+ deployments. When spouses get deployed they have briefings for the spouses/family left at home. However, not everyone chooses to use that resource.



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:36 PM
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greeneyedleo got there first, funny stuff.

[edit on 28/5/10 by pieman]



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:38 PM
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There must be more to this story. In Texas, we have a Homestead Exemption Act.



The Texas Homestead exemption is a legal rule which is designed to:

* Protect the value of homes from increasing property taxes

* Protect creditors from forcing a sale in certain circumstances

* Give protection for the spouse should the homeowner die


Texas Homestead Exemption allows an exemption from property tax on 20% of the house value. Additional exemptions are made for county taxes, those over the age of 65 and those registered disabled. The property must be the primary residence of the applicant. Texas Homestead Exemption has no dollar value limit but has a 10-acre limit for homesteads inside a municipality and 100-acre limit for those in a rural homestead.

Texas Homestead Exemption also prevents the forced sale of a home to meet the demands of creditors, with the exception of mortgage holders, note holders and tax authorities. Finally, it provides a surviving spouse with shelter.

Texas offers some of the most generous homestead exemption protections in the USA. Although the protection is substantial, it does limit the ability of the homeowner to mortgage the property, as a home equity loan and/or mortgage on a property with Homestead Exemption may not exceed 80% of the value of the property.


SOURCE: www.dallastexasrealestate.com...

Edit to provide better source

[edit on 28-5-2010 by Aggie Man]



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:39 PM
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reply to post by greeneyedleo
 


I suppose I was thinking more about family and friends and not necessarily support from the base resources.



As a side note:
Running a quick search on this story returns plenty of hits, but all seem to link back to the original Mother Jones (is that a blog?) source... so difficult to validate the exact situation and to know whether all the details have been reported correctly.



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:43 PM
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Originally posted by getreadyalready
And lastly, lastly, lol! It would have cost the association more than $800 in filing fees and attorney fees to initiate a foreclosure. Knowing that the market is down and the house would likely be sold for less than was owed, there is no way they would have initiated a foreclosure.


Don't underestimate the idiocy of corperations. Here in the UK there is a TV company called Sky and my parents were subscribed to them until they got posted to Germany. We heard nothing from them for 6 years until my mum got a letter through the post a few weeks ago demanding a payment of £50. The £50 was a contract cancellation payment or somthing to that avail. This means they tracked us to our current adress over the course of 6 years (we've moved 4 times since then), the costs for tracking us would definatley outweight £50.

[edit on 28-5-2010 by Markz0r]



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 12:44 PM
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Originally posted by LadySkadi
reply to post by greeneyedleo
 


I suppose I was thinking more about family and friends and not necessarily support from the base resources.



As a side note:
Running a quick search on this story returns plenty of hits, but all seem to link back to the original Mother Jones (is that a blog?) source... so difficult to validate the exact situation and to know whether all the details have been reported correctly.


You are right about the family thing.

Regarding the article. I dont trust it for the reasons you mentioned and then some.



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 01:16 PM
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reply to post by greeneyedleo
 


This story is true, unfortunately, if you go here:

www.wfaa.com...

Unbelievable. Hope they win their lawsuit and get their home back...

[edit on 28-5-2010 by manta78]



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 01:56 PM
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Originally posted by getreadyalready
There are such laws. I didn't read the linked article, but I don't believe this for a second. First off, why would they sell it for $3500? They could easily have gotten $200,000 or more even at fire sale prices. Second, a foreclosure takes place in court, to be valid he has to be served the notice to appear. They couldn't have served him if he was at war. If someone else was served on his behalf, then surely that someone would have told the courts that he was deployed and the whole proceeding would have been delayed.

Lastly, a young soldier doesn't make enough money to have a $300,000 home paid for. The first lien would have gone to taxes, the second to the mortgage companies, and the last one to the Home Owner's association. The first and second lien holders would not have allowed the home to be sold so cheaply.

And lastly, lastly, lol! It would have cost the association more than $800 in filing fees and attorney fees to initiate a foreclosure. Knowing that the market is down and the house would likely be sold for less than was owed, there is no way they would have initiated a foreclosure.



You are absolutely right. I happen to be a board member of my HOA and have had to deal with this sort of thing a couple of times through the years. This is very fishy indeed. It is possible that this home was owned outright which MIGHT allow for something like this to happen but like you, I doubt it. HOAs are always on the bottom of the lien list.

Also, if the attorney for the HOA did indeed falsely report anything reguarding military status -they- would be liable for any fees accumulated in this battle.



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 02:26 PM
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reply to post by ViewFromTheStars
 


Watch the video. The house was a gift from the wife's parents.
The foreclosure was over $800 in HOA dues.

And as someone who has previously dealt with the "intelligence" of HOA's and their boards, I know these kinds of things can and do happen


[edit on 28-5-2010 by manta78]



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 03:34 PM
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Originally posted by manta78
reply to post by ViewFromTheStars
 


Watch the video. The house was a gift from the wife's parents.
The foreclosure was over $800 in HOA dues.

And as someone who has previously dealt with the "intelligence" of HOA's and their boards, I know these kinds of things can and do happen


[edit on 28-5-2010 by manta78]


Thanks Manta,

Have not had the chance to really dig into it but will when I get the chance. How cheesy can you get!

Nonetheless, I hope the HOA and it's attorney gets put on the hook for this utter nonsense. I also would like to put my foot on the neck of the dirt bag that let it sell for so little...(sounds like a bunch of spite to me).

On another note, I think people, no matter how depressed they get, need to take life by the horns and take care of business. I understand first hand what depression is like but no one should ever let their guard down like this and expect things to go hunky dory. So.... I put at least some of the blame on the owners of the house.



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 04:03 PM
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Well, that is ridiculous. Sounds like a total set up to me, that a house that expensive sold for $3,500. You never see foreclosures like that, even in Ft Myers, the "epicenter" of foreclosure.

I hope he gets all this squared away, and that wife needs a trip to the psych ward if she is so crippled by whatever is wrong with her that she cant open mail. She sure as hell doesnt need to be left in charge of children.



posted on May, 28 2010 @ 05:46 PM
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reply to post by ViewFromTheStars
 


There is no question that the wife's depression played a role in this instance, but it's not the first time I have heard of someone doing this (not opening mail for months at a time).

I do believe however, that when this case goes to trial, that the couple will prevail against the HOA, get their house back, along with additional monies from the HOA. How long that will take, and how much is anyone's guess.











[edit on 28-5-2010 by manta78]



posted on Jul, 1 2010 @ 06:54 PM
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This was just reported on NPR:

www.npr.org...

I believe it. Homeowner's Associations are tyrannical perversions of a community or block. At best the majority seem to be sterile and heartless protections of neighborhood uniformity in the name of resale value. Either way, that's NOT freedom. This is not a free country as everybody likes to chant that it is.

Next time somebody tells you the soldiers are fighting for our freedoms, smack em up side the head and link them to this article. Though there is a virtually infinite pool of news, knowledge, and common sense that can prove the same point...

[edit on 1-7-2010 by NoHierarchy]



posted on Jul, 1 2010 @ 07:22 PM
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Originally posted by getreadyalready
I didn't read the linked article, but I don't believe this for a second.


If you won't even bother to read the OP's source, why should he/she bother to read your post or respond to it?



Originally posted by getreadyalready

First off, why would they sell it for $3500? They could easily have gotten $200,000 or more even at fire sale prices.




Cool Aide. It's not just for breakfast anymore.

If you aren't a troll you must have been asleep since 2007 or so.

[edit on 7/1/10 by silent thunder]



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