Greedy Investor Holds Older Woman’s Title Hostage During Sales Process (video)

Homeowner Fights Back Against Real Estate Company’s $10K Demand to Clear Title

In a follow-up to a previous investigation, a new real estate scandal has come to light involving a retired homeowner and a wholesale real estate company. The IT team uncovered how a real estate broker attempted to collect a commission from a homeowner who was injured and unable to move, and now they’re exposing another issue involving a fraudulent real estate contract.

Angela Bard’s Ordeal

Angela Bard, a retired social worker, has lived in her small unit in a St. Petersburg 55-and-older condo community since 2017. She paid cash for her home, renovated it herself, and has no outstanding debts on the property. However, when Angela decided to sell her condo, she discovered a serious problem with the title caused by a document filed by Real Estate Investment Company Simply Sold in 2020.

Angela had initially signed a contract to sell her home for $229,000 in June 2020. However, due to changing circumstances, she decided not to sell and informed the company just a few days later. Despite her clear communication, Simply Sold filed an affidavit and memorandum of agreement with the county clerk, effectively creating a legal obstacle that prevented Angela from selling her property.

The Fraudulent Document

Real estate attorney Andy Lion explained that such documents are common with real estate investors who do not intend to purchase the properties themselves. Instead, they list the properties on platforms like Facebook, trying to find buyers willing to pay more than the original contract price. The IT team found dozens of similar affidavits filed by Simply Sold in multiple counties, highlighting a widespread issue.

Angela’s dealings with Simply Sold were frustrating and deceptive. Despite receiving no money or services from the company, they continued to harass her with calls and emails. When she tried to resolve the issue, the company demanded $10,000 to clear the title, eventually reducing their demand to $2,000. This tactic left Angela in a difficult position, having to either pay the money or be unable to sell her home.

Legal and Emotional Struggles

Angela’s situation is not unique. Homeowners caught in such scams often have to throw money at the problem to make it go away or face the inability to sell their property. In Angela’s case, she was eventually able to resolve the issue after the IT team intervened. Simply Sold’s attorney, Timothy Harris, initially involved in the negotiation, agreed to release Angela from the fraudulent agreement after the team’s investigation.

After receiving the good news, Angela shared advice for anyone considering selling to a wholesale buyer: “They should be 100% sure of what they’re getting into, read all the fine print, and if they can afford it, hire a real estate lawyer to help them in the process.”

A Happy Ending

Angela’s story ends on a positive note. After resolving the fraudulent title issue, she successfully sold her home in May for $75,000, nearly three times the amount she was initially offered in 2020. Her experience serves as a cautionary tale for other homeowners to be vigilant and seek legal assistance when dealing with real estate contracts.

For more stories and updates, visit The Industry Dot Biz.

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