12 On Your Side: Renter finds herself in foreclosure, forced to move

By: Elizabeth Owens Email
By: Elizabeth Owens Email

News 12 at 6 o'clock / Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2012

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- An Augusta woman thought she found her dream home only to be forced to move out weeks after signing the lease.

April WiIlliams fell in love with the two-bedroom, one-bath cottage on McDowell Street as soon as she stepped through the front door.

"Once I seen it I said, 'This is the spot for me. This is where I want to be,'" she said.

She signed a year lease after two long months of searching for the perfect, affordable home.

"It was right at $1,300 because I had to pay the $650 deposit and the $650 to move in," she said.

She moved into her new address Dec. 6.

A month later, she found a letter posted on her front door.

"It says, 'This property is now owned by Fannie May,'" she said.

Williams says her landlord never told her the home was in foreclosure.

"I'm tremendously angry and she is still trying to call and get money from me," she said.

The government requires Fannie Mae to pay Williams to move out.

Williams is kicking herself for not checking to see if the property was in foreclosure before she signed the lease.

"It never crossed my mind -- never, never, never, because she never said anything. Nothing," she said.

There's several ways to find out if a rental is under foreclosure. A potential tenant can search court records, call a real estate agent and search the Web.

Warning signs that rental may be a foreclosure include:
-The landlord will not meet with you in person.
-The landlord will not allow you into the home.
-The landlord asks you to pay for cash and won't give you anything in writing.

For more information, visit Foreclosure.com.


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