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Squatter In £400,000 Three-Bedroom House Whose Elderly Owner Died Wins Right To Ownership After 10 Years (While Owner's Family Gets Nothing)

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2622995/Squatter-400-000-three-bedroom-house-owned-elderly-woman-WINS-right-ownership-10-years-claiming-squatters-rights.html

The house in Church Road, Newbury Park, Ilford, in north east London belonged to Doris Curtis, a widow who died in 1988 aged 88.

Similar houses in the street are on currently the market for around £400,000.

Mr Best told the High Court in London he was working on a nearby property in 1997 where the owner mentioned the occupier of ‘empty and vandalised’ number 35 had died and her son had not been seen since 1996.

He then entered the property and began renovating it. The roof was repaired in 2000, the garden was cleared and it was made generally ‘wind and watertight’.

Mr Best began treating the house ‘as his own’ from 2001 but only moved in at the beginning of 2012. There were never any complaints about his use of the property.

..

Homeowners in the street said Mrs Curtis’s son, Colin, used to regularly visit the house where he stored tobacco for kiosks and a shop he ran at tube stations in the area until he was attacked with an iron bar.

One, who asked not to be named, said: ‘He wasn’t the same afterwards. We never saw him and no one came to the house.

‘Then Best came and started work. He was always coming and going.

‘It’s totally wrong he has been able to do this. He’s trespassed and got a free house out of it. People are really angry - everyone else has had to save up and pay off their mortgage.’

Mr Curtis, 78, is understood to have had two children and it was unclear last night whether they were aware their grandmother had owned a valuable property. He is divorced from their mother, who died in 2003.

It would be interesting to know more about the case but it appears the law now menas that you'd break the law entering what in effect was an abandoned house. I'd like to know why Colin didn't sell the property when his mother died? Was it the fact he wasn't interested in it?

So if he had been evicted could he then present a bill for all the work that he did on the property to maintain it? It certainly isn't a free house as there have been renovation costs involved and for everyone else in the street this property has been maintained keeping up their valuable property prices.

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The comments are hilarious.

Like this one:

The rightful owner should have been awarded rent and immediate possesion, this country, it's laws and judges are mad.

Or
This world's a great place when you know how to swindle it to get what you want. He should be kicked out with immediate effect and the house given back to the family to sell. Why should they have to miss out because of a stupid rule and a cheeky squatter?.

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2622995/Squatter-400-000-three-bedroom-house-owned-elderly-woman-WINS-right-ownership-10-years-claiming-squatters-rights.html

It would be interesting to know more about the case but it appears the law now menas that you'd break the law entering what in effect was an abandoned house. I'd like to know why Colin didn't sell the property when his mother died? Was it the fact he wasn't interested in it?

So if he had been evicted could he then present a bill for all the work that he did on the property to maintain it? It certainly isn't a free house as there have been renovation costs involved and for everyone else in the street this property has been maintained keeping up their valuable property prices.

As it was Colins surely he could do what he pleased with it, if he wants to leave it standing good luck to him.

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So if your landlord dies and had no family you could just stop paying the rent and the property would be yours in 10 years time?

edit: Makes it worth choosing your next landlord very carefully ;)

Edited by Sine270

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So if your landlord dies and had no family you could just stop paying the rent and the property would be yours in 10 years time?

edit: Makes it worth choosing your next landlord very carefully ;)

Dont think it matters if they have family, as in this case.

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I think a quarter century is

So it sounds like the government is picking up the £200k legal bill?

I guess we have to hope his squatting has saved us more than £200k on parasite landlord housing benefit.

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I think that confirms what lawyers said all along about the Tory reforms on squatting - useless window dressing to entertain readers of the DM,

The basic principle remains: use it or lose it to someone willing to use it.

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Squatters laws come from medieval times when landowners were forever stealing land off each other.

If you kept hold of any land you stole for x no of years then you owned it-simple.

It was the only way of preventing endless probably intractable disputes over land ownership being raised decades

afterwards clogging up the courts.

No sure how relevant they are to 21 century life.

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