What would you do if your house was squatted??

Discuss those "what if" or "what would you do" scenarios you've been wondering about.

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What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by Random » Sat May 09, 2015 10:01 am

This article almost made the headlines in France.....I used Google translate ,and it s comprehensible for the most part.....except i'ts an old lady and not an old man who is the victim.....

Please read and be amazed by the wonderful European laws....

INTERVIEW - The law does not favor you if your property is squatted. This can cost you time and money. Jean-François Buet, President of FNAIM, answers our questions.

What if your property is squatted? A question not so preposterous as was proven news of recent days ... Maryvonne, 83, was found at the door of er house - which she owns - dislodged by squatters who have occupied the premises ... and who are naturally not very prone to clear off without incident. Better still, they have the right to stay. The law provides that if the owner has taken no steps within 48 hours after installation of squatters, they can invoke the law on domicile. "I almost home. I went to the nearest police station. They told me: "If you were home, you were in the wrong, it was trespassing," says Maryvonne son before the cameras of France 2. Scandalous? The president of the FNAIM Jean François Buet gives some clarification Figaro estate ...

LE FIGARO. - After 48 hours of squatting, what's happening exactly for the owner? It is hard to believe what happens to Maryvonne ...

Yet it is the law ... After 48 hours, it is complicated, and initiate against squatters legal proceedings becomes mandatory. Although occupier without right or title, the squatter has the same rights as a tenant in expulsion. We must collect evidence, obtain a deportation order to appeal to a court bailiff, the use of a lawyer is advisable ... The procedure can take a variable time . At best, the case can be fastened in two weeks. You should know that justice is rarely presents to squatters in this kind of case ...

What can complicate things then?

If the expulsion is booked, you must know that the other party - the (s) squatter (s) in this case can appeal and challenge the ruling ... They is entirely possible - as c This is the case in the case Maryvonne - not to comply, and to resist. This is where it gets complicated: If they play the card of the time. Recall that the squatters are very familiar with laws that go in their favor! (Note: the squatters who occupy the house Maryvonne actually hung on the door to the law that protects them.)

Is this a rare situation?

To my knowledge, yes, these cases remains fortunately minority. But hopefully this is not commonplace. Be aware that currently shelter becomes increasingly difficult (cost of living, rents) and this could encourage some to commit such acts ... We must not take this type of threat to lightly.

If the legal limit to drive away intruders via the forces of order is 48 hours, this amounts to saying that it is dangerous to spend a long weekend away from home?

Indeed, absent more than 48 hours a risk. Go on a weekend vacation ... Nobody is immune. It may also be worthwhile to optimize your security systems alarms, remote monitoring ... You can also ask a neighbor or family member to come and see if all is well. Even prevent the municipal police of your absence. These are issues that need to be thinking, this incident has shown us.



--After reading this ,I might just get into breeding Cobras and Cottonmouths ,and go on a loooong vacation ,while they roam free in my home.Let the bastards come!!!!
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by JeeperCreeper » Sat May 09, 2015 11:01 am

Squatters rights..... Such an interesting ordinance. I'd be interested in its history.

Prepping tip: make a friend with a lawyer so you can ask free legal advice on where to start if confronted with such a situation.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by LowKey » Sat May 09, 2015 11:59 am

I'd physically eject them using whatever force was needed. Entirely legal in my area, as they would be considered home invaders, "Squatter's Rights" were specifically outlawed in the legislature.

TL:DR- Order them out, then proceed to legally whoop their ass if they don't run out right then and there.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by Neptune Glory » Sat May 09, 2015 1:02 pm

In Missouri, as in other states, an individual who openly inhabits an otherwise neglected piece of property for a certain period of time may legally obtain title. This is called "adverse possession" and it's essentially a loophole in the law, closely related to trespassing. Basically, once the statute of limitations has run out, the legitimate property owner loses his or her right to force the "squatter" off of the property. In fact, adverse possession is often referred to as "squatter's rights."

There are some specific requirements, however, that make it relatively difficult for someone to claim another's property. While it is done without formal permission, the occupation must be open and obvious to any onlookers. Missouri law requires at least 10 years of continuous occupation before someone may claim a parcel of property.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by raptor » Sat May 09, 2015 1:47 pm

All US states have some form of adverse possession laws. Generally they require years and not days of open and adverse possession. The laws vary widely with some states favoring property owners and others favoring squatters. In LA the laws favor property owners. Even if the occupants have a lease and are innocent renters for instance who rented from a scammer they can be forced out in hours.

In LA the person must in addition file a claim and go to court to get in effect a quit claim deed by proving adverse and open possession. Obviously YMMV by state and country. A 48 hr adverse possession rule seems at best disruptive.

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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by zero11010 » Sat May 09, 2015 2:14 pm

A lot of people own homes that they rent out. It can be really difficult to evict people who are basically squatting after they stop paying rent.


I dated a girl a while back who had a rental property (Sacramento area). Her tenants paid rent for a couple months, then stopped. It took her about a year to evict them so she could sell her own property.

A buddy of mine had about a half a dozen rental properties in the LA (Los Angeles) area. When he moved back up to the San Francisco bay area some of his tenants decided they didn't need to pay rent anymore. It took him about a year to evict them, too. I haven't asked him about a specific dollar amount, but I believe he ended up losing millions.

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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by azrancher » Sat May 09, 2015 2:26 pm

zero11010 wrote: I haven't asked him about a specific dollar amount, but I believe he ended up losing millions.
Which is why property management companies are a good thing, they know the big guys on the other side of the tracks that will evict a rental for a 12 pack of beer...

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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by zero11010 » Sat May 09, 2015 2:56 pm

azrancher wrote:
zero11010 wrote: I haven't asked him about a specific dollar amount, but I believe he ended up losing millions.
Which is why property management companies are a good thing, they know the big guys on the other side of the tracks that will evict a rental for a 12 pack of beer...

Rancher
If he had remained physically closer to the property the tenants may not have felt that for some reason they didn't need to pay rent, or as you suggest, if he had handed the job over to someone else who was close by it may have helped.

But, the eviction process would have remained the same. If someone refuses to leave a property it can take a lot to get them out legally.

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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by Mall Ninja » Sat May 09, 2015 3:44 pm

I could see this being a problem for folks who buy a bit of land in the backend of nowhere as a vacation home/BOL, especially if they don't spend a lot of time there. And if it some of the locals squatting there, it might be a lot tougher to get the local legal system to act promptly or even act at all.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by ineffableone » Sat May 09, 2015 4:29 pm

As already mentioned, the US is not France. The US laws regarding squatter rights is a lot less friendly to squatters. Now if they were renters turned squatters that is another story. But as long as they had not had a rental agreement, it is pretty easy to remove squatters in the US. The laws favor the land owner not the squatters.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by zero11010 » Sat May 09, 2015 4:42 pm

This may be an issue of verbage. A squatter and a trespasser are not synonymous terms.


http://homeguides.sfgate.com/landlords- ... 50614.html

"States like California prohibit landlords from using "self-help" measures to get squatters out. Prohibited landlord self-help measures include shutting off utilities already in a squatter's name or physically removing squatters' possessions. Landlords discovering squatters must immediately call the police, even though the police might be hesitant to get involved in landlord-squatter issues. When police can't help, landlords must give squatters a formal "notice to quit" the premises and start the eviction process while also legally encouraging squatter self-removal."

"Landlords must maintain pressure on squatters if they hope to convince them to leave. Giving squatters formal notice to quit and then filing for court-ordered eviction is a good start, but more can be done. Landlords immediately must report to the police any suspected squatter violations of law, such as utility theft or possible drug dealing. Seeking surveillance assistance from neighbors around the property also can make squatters eager to leave."

"Squatters moving into vacant properties can cost landlords time and money to evict. It could take a couple months for a landlord to get a squatter out, during which time the property isn't generating revenue. Though unfair, landlords might consider paying squatters "move-out money." Given the lost rent, court costs, and damages that typically accumulate because of squatting, paying squatters to move out might actually save landlords money over the long run."


http://www.landlordstation.com/info/squ ... -them.html

"There is a difference between a squatter and a trespasser. Squatters move into a vacant property, put the utilities in their name, get mail at the property address, and openly take possession. Knowing squatters rights is important when you want to take action against them. Squatters often prepare false documents to show police and other authorities to prevent being ejected. It is difficult for police to determine who has legal documents and who does not. Trespassers break windows and doors to gain entry. They do not have utilities and have no furniture. The police are much more willing to eject trespassers."

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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by crypto » Sat May 09, 2015 4:45 pm

When I was in school, there was a kid we called Wyoming because his parents were one of the larger landowners of that state.

They lost something like 10 acres of their immense grazing property because a guy had built a cabin on it, put up a fence, and raised a family in it. And they didn't see it for more than 10 years. The guy had it free and clear.


Now they do annual helicopter overflights of all their land.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by duodecima » Sat May 09, 2015 5:13 pm

Yeah, my first thought of "what would you do" was "wonder how I had ended up in France?" The hassle of keeping track of a remote property is one of the reasons we don't aspire to owning a vacation house or anything. Pretty sure the laws here would not be favorable to someone who moved into my primary residence while I was gone a week, even if they'd tried to change the utilities and such. Makes me curious about the history of that particular law in France.

Stuff like this is why my dad was pretty quick about getting rid of a fence a neighbor had put (in a presumably honest error) about 2 feet onto our property. Sent him a letter demanding removal, gave him a couple weeks, then removed the fence and stacked it onto the guy's actual property. Neighbor was pissed, called the sheriff, who didn't end up doing anything, neighbor got a survey, which said the line was exactly where we thought it was. End of story (tho neighbor is still apparently miffed.)

Attempting to claim adverse possesion can go badly - the building I work in, a guy tried to do that the driveway of a house, one house down from his, for reasons which are not obvious to me. 17 years later, it finally got totally kicked out of court and the people who lived there then sued for trespassing and harassment, judge actually awarded punative damages of almost a quarter mil.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by Random » Sat May 09, 2015 5:40 pm

get a look at the picture of the article......we can see 6 policemen in riot gear ,actually guarding the squatters.

http://www.lefigaro.fr/actualite-france ... maison.php
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by crypto » Sat May 09, 2015 6:51 pm

^^^ I dont doubt that the squatters and the property needed police protection. I would imagine this story goes over about as well in France as it does here.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by raptor » Sat May 09, 2015 7:08 pm

I have seen several adverse possession claims all related to either a driveway or a fence. However, there was a long drawn out court case dealing with land on the Riverside of the Mississippi River batture which is a legal no man's land. The original owner was a squatter who acquired a quit claim to the land and then rent it for decades to others who built houses on it. They then decided after decades to stop paying rent and make a claim for adverse possession based upon a flaw in the original squatter's quit claim.

It took a decade to get resolved but the later squatters ended up with a better claim to the property based upon the improvements they made. The orginal squatter lost his priority claim.

The squatter got out squatted. :lol:

http://blog.nola.com/topnews/2007/05/fi ... o_ply.html

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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by duodecima » Sat May 09, 2015 10:41 pm

I poked around, and unfortunately don't speak French. And google translate is kinda horrendous altho better than nothing. What I can glean, is that while a 2007 law does indeed give only 48 hours for an owner to have the police simply remove the squatters, (I still wonder where that came from) this case seems perhaps more complicated - there's a mention of the local mayor having contacted her several times in 2013 to address some situation with squatters, and another mention that seems to indicate that at least some of the "squatters" are children of the lady's deceased companion. This doesn't sound so much like a case of being on vacation or in the hospital for a week and having somebody move in, sounds like a much longer term issue and possibly an inheritance dispute. Fwiw.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by Halfapint » Sun May 10, 2015 12:26 am

I have some kind of first hand experience with this. My dad bought the house I grew up in, around '76 or so. There was a strip of land on the north end of the house that was actually suppose to be a road, but they never actually built it. Well dad had planted trees, had a garden, and built a little parking strip up there. Once day the city came around and said, something along the lines of "you can have that it's our property."

He found a lawyer that said well if you can prove that you've had it for over a decade (or something like that) we can get them to give it to you, and you pay some amount of back taxes on it. Well he came out with an extra 1/5th acre on the property, for under $5k, I think he didn't even have to pay the full amount either.

I know it's not the same thing. BUT eh....
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by LowKey » Sun May 10, 2015 2:13 am

raptor wrote:All US states have some form of adverse possession laws. Generally they require years and not days of open and adverse possession. The laws vary widely with some states favoring property owners and others favoring squatters. In LA the laws favor property owners. Even if the occupants have a lease and are innocent renters for instance who rented from a scammer they can be forced out in hours.

In LA the person must in addition file a claim and go to court to get in effect a quit claim deed by proving adverse and open possession. Obviously YMMV by state and country. A 48 hr adverse possession rule seems at best disruptive.
Actually, Alaska has specifically enacted legislation that outlaws any form of squatters rights whatsoever.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by raptor » Sun May 10, 2015 8:49 am

I am no expert on the matter and defer to you accordingly. In view of the remoteness of some parts of Alaska, I can see why that would be the case.

I am sure there are parts of Alaska that may even be seen much less accessed for 20+ years.

Now the interesting bit to me anyway is that LA uses the Napolianic code and it's pro-property slant comes from that code. I guess France does not follow the code anymore.
Last edited by raptor on Sun May 10, 2015 9:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by LowKey » Sun May 10, 2015 8:59 am

raptor wrote:I am no expert on the matter and defer to you accordingly. In view of the remoteness of some parts of Alaska, I can see why that would be the case.

I am sure there are parts of Alaska that may even be seen much less accessed for 20+ years.

Now the interesting bit to me anyway is that LA uses the Napolianic code and it's prproperty slant comes from that code. I guess France does not follow the code anymore.
Remoteness and size of land parcels was a huge reason behind the legislation. http://scholarship.law.duke.edu/cgi/vie ... ontext=alr


It always comes as a bit of a shock when I'm reminded that Louisiana's very honorable and well established legal system are based off of the Napoleonic Code rather than English Common law. It should not surprise me, based on the history and subsequent traditions of the region, but does nonetheless in comparison with the rest of the United States. I hope that the residents of the area will forgive me and accept my apologies for unconsciously making any such assumptions. No offense or dispersions have ever been intended.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by raptor » Sun May 10, 2015 9:20 am

LowKey wrote: It always comes as a bit of a shock when I'm reminded that Louisiana's very honorable and well established legal system are based off of the Napoleonic Code rather than English Common law. It should not surprise me, based on the history and subsequent traditions of the region, but does nonetheless in comparison with the rest of the United States. I hope that the residents of the area will forgive me and accept my apologies for unconsciously making any such assumptions. No offense or dispersions have ever been intended.
No offense taken.

Napolianic Code in many ways makes sense for a poor and uneducated nation like France when it was drafted. It minimized the need for attorneys, speeded and simplified succession if there was no written will and minimized the need for litigation...all things that modern attorneys hate. All you really need is a Notary Public, two adult witnesses, a consenting adult and the correct form filed with the clerk of court and you can do 99% of the things most people need. No need for an attorney or court trials since the Notary Public acted as the defacto court representative.

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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by Stercutus » Mon May 11, 2015 3:31 am

zero11010 wrote:
azrancher wrote:
zero11010 wrote: I haven't asked him about a specific dollar amount, but I believe he ended up losing millions.
Which is why property management companies are a good thing, they know the big guys on the other side of the tracks that will evict a rental for a 12 pack of beer...

Rancher
If he had remained physically closer to the property the tenants may not have felt that for some reason they didn't need to pay rent, or as you suggest, if he had handed the job over to someone else who was close by it may have helped.

But, the eviction process would have remained the same. If someone refuses to leave a property it can take a lot to get them out legally.
Figure if it is going to cost you say $200 to evict someone and take two weeks, you can just go by and listen to the tenant hard luck story/ bullshit/ lies and then offer them a $100 to clean up and clear out in two days. Meanwhile you can get the property turned around quicker and back into service. if they don't go all you lost was two days. A lot of people will balk at paying money to those same worthless POSs who abused you just to get them to leave. But it is quite pragmatic. I bet it would work with most squatters too.

In AL squatters essentially have no rights. Getting a squatter removed is the same as a trespasser. Call the police. Tenants on the other hand are a real bugaloo.

If his implication was to hire some people to intimidate the tenants into leaving that might be more difficult and possibly illegal.
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Re: What would you do if your house was squatted??

Post by zero11010 » Mon May 11, 2015 3:45 am

Stercutus wrote:
zero11010 wrote:
azrancher wrote:
zero11010 wrote: I haven't asked him about a specific dollar amount, but I believe he ended up losing millions.
Which is why property management companies are a good thing, they know the big guys on the other side of the tracks that will evict a rental for a 12 pack of beer...

Rancher
If he had remained physically closer to the property the tenants may not have felt that for some reason they didn't need to pay rent, or as you suggest, if he had handed the job over to someone else who was close by it may have helped.

But, the eviction process would have remained the same. If someone refuses to leave a property it can take a lot to get them out legally.
Figure if it is going to cost you say $200 to evict someone and take two weeks, you can just go by and listen to the tenant hard luck story/ bullshit/ lies and then offer them a $100 to clean up and clear out in two days. Meanwhile you can get the property turned around quicker and back into service. if they don't go all you lost was two days. A lot of people will balk at paying money to those same worthless POSs who abused you just to get them to leave. But it is quite pragmatic. I bet it would work with most squatters too.

In AL squatters essentially have no rights. Getting a squatter removed is the same as a trespasser. Call the police. Tenants on the other hand are a real bugaloo.

If his implication was to hire some people to intimidate the tenants into leaving that might be more difficult and possibly illegal.
In San Francisco landlords often have to pay tens of thousands of dollars to get people to vacate property (different scenario, but I've heard of people in San Francisco rent controlled apartments who are paying rent on time and happily being offered $30,000 to leave their rental property and look for other housing, and roughly 9 out of 10 people would rather stay with the rent controlled property than take money offered until it gets pretty ridiculously high).

Property is on the expensive side out here.

So, it would be more like losing out on 2k-5k per month from rent from the property not paying out. Plus paying the person another 10k-20k to leave. Then paying however many hundreds to thousands of dollars it would cost to get the place professionally cleaned. Then losing out on 2k-5k per month until you fill the unit.

If what you're talking about are trespassers (rather than squatters), then you may be absolutely right. Hand over a few hundred dollars to the squatters to get them a week's stay at some short term housing place (most of the places I've seen in the area are roughly 500-600 per week) and let them have the cash in lieu of dealing with the police.

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