Handyman creatively used squatter rights to evict occupants from his mother’s property, after local law enforcement could do nothing about them.
Squatters Had Taken Over His Mother’s House
When squatters took over his mother’s house, skilled handyman Flash Shelton took matters into his own hands.
After a weekend of researching the law, he devised a creative plan to legally remove the trespassers from the property.
He Looked Into the Laws
“I analyzed the laws over a weekend. My realization was that until there’s a legal action, squatters lack rights. So, if I could swap roles with them, become the squatter, I could claim those squatter rights,” Shelton shared during his appearance on Fox News’ “Varney & Co.”
The Squatters Moved in After His Father Died
Shelton’s encounter with squatters commenced following his father’s passing. Amid their grief, the family opted to sell the house, only to uncover squatters claiming ownership over it.
Squatters Always Have Legal Protection
Squatters, individuals dwelling in a property without ownership or rent payment, often perplexingly receive protection from state laws that grant them legal claims to the property, despite it not being rightfully theirs.
Law Enforcement Said They Were Powerless
When Shelton sought assistance from local law enforcement, he was met with disappointment. “I contacted local law enforcement, and once they observed furniture in the house, they declared it a squatter situation, asserting they held limited jurisdiction and were powerless,” he recounted.
He Became the Squatter
Unfazed, Shelton devised a strategy to reclaim his home by utilizing the very squatter rights that seemed to hinder him.
He further fortified his position by having his mother create and notarize a lease agreement.
He Moved in and Installed Cameras
“I packed up my jeep, arrived at the location around 4 a.m., surveyed the surroundings, and waited.
Around 8:00, 8:30 in the morning, three cars exited the driveway, and I entered the house. I installed cameras and awaited their return,” he narrated.
There Was Only One Way In
“Since they didn’t possess a lease, that factor wasn’t at play. Upon their return, I confronted them, explained the situation – the premises were secured, cameras were in place, and they could only regain access through recorded break-in, subject to prosecution.
They were given a day to retrieve their belongings, or the furniture would no longer be theirs.”
Laws Often Side With Squatters and Tenants
Shelton’s experience isn’t unique, echoing a broader trend of squatting across the U.S.
The problem is often exacerbated by progressive policies favoring squatters and tenants over landlords, as highlighted by Mitch Roschelle, managing director at Madison Ventures+.
Laws Are Not to Protect the Landlord
Roschelle underscored the issue’s gravity in cities like New York City, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles, stating, “The laws are written to protect the tenant, not the landlord.”
‘The Law Is Not on Your Side’
In a candid caution to landlords, Roschelle emphasized, “The law is not on your side.”
As a Tenant He Had Leverage Over Them
Shelton, too, felt the weight of skewed regulations. “While the law would prohibit me from physically removing them, my status as a non-homeowner actually granted me more rights.
As a tenant, I had an edge over them,” he explained.
They Had to Leave Voluntarily
In the face of continued defiance by squatters, he was prepared to take drastic measures, relying on his lease to make their stay unpleasant, eventually compelling them to leave voluntarily.
Now He’s Helping Other People
Having navigated this challenging experience, Shelton has assisted others in similar predicaments and advocated for reforms in squatter laws.
He Provides Assistance to as Many as Possible
“I offer Zoom consultations, suggesting a donation to the cause. When feasible, I also provide in-person assistance to as many as possible,” he shared with host Stuart Varney.
‘I Am Striving for Legal Reform’
“Most importantly, I am striving for legal reform. That’s my primary focus. In helping others now, since I can’t assist everyone individually, I believe changing squatter laws is the way to aid everyone.”
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Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / B-D-S Piotr Marcinski. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.
Source: FOX Business