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The Ugly Fact Behind “We Purchase Ugly Homes” — ProPublica

The Ugly Fact Behind “We Purchase Ugly Homes” — ProPublica

2023-05-11 07:17:19

Cory Evans was well-versed within the HomeVestors of America playbook when he arrived at a suburban Los Angeles house on Nov. 4, 2016. His franchise with the “We Purchase Ugly Homes” firm had executed greater than 50 offers within the previous two years. Patriot Holdings would quickly change into one of many firm’s most profitable franchises by following HomeVestors’ technique of discovering householders in determined conditions, then convincing them to promote rapidly.

The home-owner, Corrine Casanova, had purchased the three-bedroom Baldwin Park bungalow along with her husband in 1961 and now owned it outright. After elevating three kids there, she was days away from leaving it for an assisted residing facility and had known as the quantity on a HomeVestors advert.

“I used to be questioning if I might get an estimate of the worth of my house,” she informed the lady who answered the cellphone. “My husband’s gone, so it’s simply me now.”

Evans, who ran the enterprise with three of his brothers, had developed a fame amongst different franchisees within the space as a “onerous nearer.” Casanova’s home was paid off, giving Evans room to go low together with his supply as a result of there wasn’t a mortgage to settle. He calculated the revenue he wished to make and offered Casanova with a 10-page buy settlement throughout the quick go to to her home.

However Casanova was incapable of participating in a posh negotiation. Though she was as soon as a talented bookkeeper and president of the native girls’s membership, dementia now carved into her short-term reminiscence: A latest neurological evaluation had discovered the 82-year-old was unable to say what yr it was or title town she was in. She routinely mistook her grownup son for his uncle.

Corrine Casanova

Credit score:
Courtesy of David Casanova

HomeVestors cautions its franchisees by no means to make the most of sellers who’re unable to grasp negotiations. However by the point he left that night, Evans had a contract to purchase the home for roughly two-thirds its worth, signed in Casanova’s shaky script.

Weeks handed earlier than Casanova’s household discovered of the sale. However her son, David Casanova, quickly sensed one thing was incorrect.

“After we moved her, she saved saying, ‘I must name my good friend. I must name my good friend.’ And I am like, ‘Which good friend, Mother?’” David informed ProPublica.

Corrine couldn’t bear in mind.

After David discovered of the contract, he defined to Evans that his mom had dementia and tried to cancel the sale. As an alternative of strolling away, Evans dug in, recording a discover on the property’s title that primarily prevented a sale to anybody else, which compelled the Casanova household right into a years-long battle to maintain the house. Alongside the best way, Evans disputed that Casanova confirmed indicators of impairment throughout their interactions.

HomeVestors of America boasts that it helped pioneer the actual property funding business. Based in 1996 by a Texas actual property dealer, the corporate has developed a system for snapping up downside properties — and expanded it to almost 1,150 franchises in 48 states.

In contrast to actual property brokers, home flippers function in a largely unregulated house. Actual property brokers have a fiduciary duty to signify a house owner’s greatest pursuits in negotiations, which is outlined in state legal guidelines, licensing necessities and an business code of ethics. However in most states, flippers don’t want a license.

HomeVestors, the self-proclaimed “largest homebuyer in the USA,” goes to nice lengths to tell apart itself from the hedge funds and YouTube gurus which have taken over giant swaths of the actual property funding market. The corporate says it helps householders out of jams — ugly homes and ugly conditions — enhancing lives and communities by taking over properties nobody else would purchase. A part of that mission is a promise to not make the most of anybody who doesn’t perceive the true worth of their house, at the same time as franchisees pursue rock-bottom costs.

A HomeVestors billboard in Asheville, North Carolina

Credit score:
Harrison Shull/Aurora Pictures/Cavan Photos/Alamy Inventory Photograph

Deal with each buyer like they’re your 85-year-old grandma who’s by no means finished an actual property deal, HomeVestors trainers inform franchise house owners at annual conferences.

However a ProPublica investigation — primarily based on courtroom paperwork, property information, firm coaching supplies and interviews with 48 former franchise house owners and dozens of house owners who’ve bought to its franchises — discovered HomeVestors franchisees that used deception and focused the aged, infirm and people so near poverty that they feared homelessness can be a consequence of promoting.

One HomeVestors franchisee falsely claimed to a 72-year-old girl affected by a hoarding downside that metropolis code enforcement officers would take her home, according to court documents. An Arizona girl mentioned in an interview that she was compelled to reside in her truck after making an attempt unsuccessfully to cancel the sale of her house. One court case documented the plight of an aged man in Florida who was informed if he bought his rental he might proceed residing there quickly. However he spent his last days alive ready to be evicted when — after the contract was signed — the franchise proprietor knowledgeable him the householders affiliation guidelines didn’t permit it.

“You have been all the time mendacity to them. That’s what we have been skilled,” mentioned Katie Southard, who owned a franchise in North Carolina. “There was a value that you can pay, however you’ll all the time go decrease and inform them that was the value you can pay.”

Even when householders believed they have been being taken benefit of and tried to again out of offers, franchise house owners sued or filed paperwork to dam a sale to a different purchaser. Some householders fought from hospital beds to maintain their properties. No less than three died shortly after signing gross sales contracts; a fourth died after three years of worrying about cash. Their households informed ProPublica that they’re satisfied the stress of dropping their homes contributed to their family members’ deaths, although all had been sick or infirm.

A HomeVestors spokesperson mentioned the offers uncovered by ProPublica signify a tiny fraction of the corporate’s general transactions, which have totaled greater than 71,400 since 2016. She denied the corporate had focused the aged and pointed to a 96% approval ranking amongst householders who promote to HomeVestors, which was calculated internally from what the corporate says was “over 500” buyer critiques. The corporate had already taken motion in among the instances discovered by ProPublica, she added, and is investigating others in mild of the reporting.

Inside days of receiving questions from ProPublica, HomeVestors prohibited its franchises from recording paperwork to stop householders from canceling gross sales and discouraged them from suing sellers. The practices not solely have an effect on the vendor, the corporate famous, it creates a paper path that reporters and prosecutors can comply with to a franchise’s doorstep.

“If you’re doing this on a serial foundation, you are placing the complete system in danger,” HomeVestors’ basic counsel, Anthony Lowenberg, mentioned throughout a nationwide name on April 18 to alert franchise house owners to ProPublica’s upcoming story.

Throughout that decision, a recording of which was obtained by ProPublica, firm management acknowledged the depth and thoroughness of the information group’s investigation and mentioned modifications to make sure “our franchises are doing the proper issues.”

“This is going to make us a better company,” HomeVestors CEO David Hicks concluded.

How They Discover You

HomeVestors has labored onerous to make sure it’s a family title, with ubiquitous promoting on billboards, mailers, tv and the web. The corporate has trademarked dozens of pictures and phrases, together with “The Good, the Dangerous and the Ugly” and “Ugly Alternatives,” and continuously goes after imitators in courtroom. Its cartoon caveman, “Ug,” provides a pleasant smile and generally holds out a bag of money implying he’s prepared to assist householders out of “Ugly Conditions.”

HomeVestors deploys Ug strategically. You’ll discover him on advertisements close to properties slammed by hurricanes or charred by wildfires. He’s on mailers blanketing ZIP codes with a excessive focus of house owners who’ve plenty of fairness. He’s on postcards despatched to folks that public information point out have lately divorced or had a dying within the household. To relations making an attempt to navigate probate, HomeVestors guarantees: “We might help.”

In recent times, scores of house owners have complained to native authorities and the Federal Commerce Fee about HomeVestors’ ceaseless overtures — generally claiming that the corporate has ignored formal requests to cease. A Texas resident whose father had lately been murdered informed ProPublica that HomeVestors wouldn’t take no for a solution. The letters have been so persistent, she mentioned, that checking her mail grew to become a traumatic expertise.

A HomeVestors spokesperson mentioned the corporate addresses every grievance it receives and provides folks to an inner “don’t name” checklist once they ask to not be contacted.

HomeVestors additionally casts its internet on-line, hoping to succeed in householders earlier than they speak to an actual property agent or one other investor.

In an interview, a former worker of the advert company employed by HomeVestors recalled discussions about the best way to serve on-line advertisements to folks within the neighborhood of nursing properties and rehabilitation hospitals. The objective was to catch households who wanted to promote belongings so Medicaid would pay their nursing house prices. The worker, who requested to not be named as a result of they nonetheless work within the business, additionally recalled the company’s proprietor bragging in regards to the potential of its digital promoting to seek out an aged one who had damaged a hip. That damage, the worker reported the proprietor saying, is successfully a 60-day countdown to dying — and, probably, a deal.

“If we will get in entrance of individuals at that time, that was like a particular solution to go,” the previous worker mentioned. “Yeah, that was unhealthy. My abdomen hurts eager about that.”

A spokesperson for the advert company, Imaginuity, mentioned it might be “out of character” for the proprietor to “disrespect or want hurt” to a shopper’s prospects.

A HomeVestors spokesperson admitted that the corporate had used such ad-targeting know-how however mentioned it solely did so as soon as, greater than 4 years in the past. A spokesperson for Imaginuity mentioned the pilot undertaking didn’t goal rehabilitation facilities.

Nonetheless, HomeVestors’ franchisees are taught methods to seek out folks transferring right into a nursing house.

As much as half of a franchise’s prospects have to be generated by its personal legwork, what HomeVestors refers to as “dig leads.” The corporate’s coaching guide teaches franchisees to construct relationships with those that work together with folks in troublesome conditions: nursing home administrators, probate officers, divorce lawyers. It additionally instructs them to comb neighborhoods for clues of misery — water shutoff notices, police tape, boarded-up home windows, burn scars — and pounce on indicators of desperation. If a household’s belongings are on the curb, for instance, the directive is obvious: “Quickly pursue the property where the trash pile indicates eviction.

In a written assertion, the HomeVestors spokesperson initially denied the corporate targets householders primarily based on such life occasions as a dying, divorce or transferring to a nursing facility. After ProPublica pointed to firm promoting paperwork and coaching supplies that train such ways, the spokesperson mentioned they signify a small fraction of its advertising price range. The corporate additionally denied focusing on householders primarily based on demographics, together with age. Quite, the corporate focuses on smaller, older properties that could be in want of restore, the spokesperson mentioned.

For all of its scrupulous picture administration, the corporate has at occasions described its targets in crude phrases. Sure properties in its promoting crosshairs are referred to internally as “honeypots.” And in a 2020 interview, Hicks mentioned homes focused by his firm smell so bad flippers want to take a shower after visiting them.

“That cat piss scent, you recognize what that scent is?” he mentioned with a chuckle. “That’s cash.”

Hicks declined a request for an interview.

“It Wasn’t Simply One Dangerous Actor”

HomeVestors requires that amid the frenzy to seek out determined householders and make a deal, its franchisees not interact in “underhanded strategies that cheapen and threat their companies.”

It teaches them to be clear that they are a “discount buyer,” unable to pay full value, and that the vendor will as an alternative get velocity and comfort. It explicitly forbids them from mendacity. “A franchisee shall not knowingly make any false statements or claims regarding property worth, market situations or some other matter regarding actual property to any property proprietor to be able to affect that particular person’s choice to promote,” the handbook reads.

However proudly owning a HomeVestors franchise is pricey. Along with charges and commissions paid to the corporate, franchisees are required to pay hefty sums — usually tens of hundreds of {dollars} a month — to help advertising. A workforce of company auditors works to make sure no price is delinquent. Such monetary pressures can result in desperation for offers, which in flip can result in unethical conduct, in response to former franchisees.

ProPublica discovered a sample of HomeVestors flippers dealing with allegations they stretched the reality or deceived householders in pursuit of offers.

A lady in Fort Price, Texas, mentioned in an interview a franchisee informed her she might legally signal a contract to promote her late husband’s home although she wasn’t on the deed. A person in Broward County, Florida, believed he was signing a doc for a house fairness mortgage that in actuality was a contract to promote his $100,000 home for $37,500, in response to a lawsuit he filed however in the end deserted. (HomeVestors’ spokesperson mentioned the doc was labeled a contract on the market.) A lady in Arizona mentioned in an interview she was informed her late mom’s house in a preferred outside recreation city must be torn down and rebuilt to fetch a good value. After paying her $10,000, the HomeVestors franchise bought it for $55,000 with out making any enhancements.

“It wasn’t only one unhealthy actor,” mentioned a former California franchise proprietor who spoke anonymously as a result of they feared retribution from HomeVestors. “It grew to become pervasive within the tradition.”

HomeVestors’ spokesperson mentioned such conduct isn’t taught or tolerated, and when it’s discovered, “we intention to take swift motion as much as and together with termination of a franchise.” She added that “mendacity is in opposition to our code of ethics and our tradition.” The spokesperson wouldn’t title which franchises and even what number of have been terminated for violating firm requirements. ProPublica discovered HomeVestors bestowed awards on eight franchise house owners within the final two yearswho had engaged in conduct the corporate mentioned will not be tolerated.

In its coaching manuals and at its annual conferences — boisterous affairs the place franchise house owners pose for images with Ug and one flipper wore a swimsuit printed with $100 payments — HomeVestors teaches the Sandler system. Central to this gross sales technique is constructing rapport with householders to be able to “discover the ache.”

“Ache is all the time a type of motivation,” the training manual reads. “As soon as you discover the Vendor’s ache, you’ve a significantly better likelihood of shopping for the home.”

Among the many circumstances that may generate a quick sale: a misplaced job, a looming foreclosures or a baby in want of surgical procedure. One former franchisee described how he discovered a possible Atlanta vendor’s ache by asking the home-owner why he wanted to promote so quick. The reply: His mom was residing out her last days in hospice 1,400 miles away.

“It’s not as a result of they wish to promote the home,” the previous franchisee mentioned. “It’s as a result of they wish to get to Colorado to see their dying mom.”

“I Will By no means Promote to You”

About two months after Corrine Casanova accepted Evans’ supply, her son paid for an appraisal.

Corrine’s wasn’t one of many ugly homes mythologized within the firm’s advertisements. The appraiser deemed it “fairly maintained,” noting latest enhancements to the plumbing, bedrooms, sewer line and exterior stucco. The appraisal put the house’s worth at $440,000, $165,000 greater than Evans had supplied.

Over time, the Casanovas had poured time and vitality into modest enhancements: A driveway, which David and his father had repaved within the Eighties, was nonetheless in good condition; a brand new oak flooring had value roughly $7,000 about 13 years in the past. As a youngster, David labored an after-school job for his father, testing diodes and semiconductors in the home’s storage. His mom, who saved meticulous information of the household’s funds, would minimize him firm checks in lieu of an allowance.

“They drilled that into us once we have been little,” David Casanova mentioned. “If you would like one thing, you’re employed for it, you save and you buy it.”

Whereas David was initially unaware his mom had agreed to promote, he did know she was susceptible and had tried to guard her. David’s father, earlier than he handed away in 2014, warned David that Corrine’s situation was worse than it appeared — that she might pretend it “actual good for about 5 minutes” earlier than signs of her dementia would change into evident. By 2016, her well being had deteriorated to the purpose that she wanted full-time care. She had come to consider she was a youngster once more, residing within the Nineteen Fifties, David mentioned.

HomeVestors’ coaching supplies are unequivocal about the best way to deal with potential sellers whose talents could also be diminished: “A Franchisee shall not buy actual property from any particular person whom the Franchisee is aware of or has purpose to suspect is topic to a guardianship or has a psychological capability that’s diminished to the purpose that the particular person doesn’t perceive the worth of the property.”

But information present a sample of disregard for that directive.

In 2020, a 78-year-old man in Atlanta was satisfied to signal a gross sales contract for $97,000, about half what it later bought for. Eight weeks later, a cognitive examination confirmed he was unable to jot down a sentence or title the yr, season, date or month, in response to a lawsuit that’s nonetheless pending. (The franchisee informed ProPublica the person appeared in full command of his schools, and HomeVestors mentioned the franchise is not a part of the corporate.)

That very same yr, a 77-year-old girl in Glendale, Arizona, who might not handle her funds signed a contract to promote her home for beneath half what it was value, in response to courtroom paperwork. Within the ensuing combat to save lots of her home, the lady attended a courtroom listening to remotely from her hospital room. (A HomeVestors spokesperson mentioned the lawsuit was not initiated by a franchise however fairly one other investor who purchased the gross sales contract from the franchise. The spokesperson, nevertheless, didn’t touch upon the franchise proprietor’s interactions with the aged home-owner. The enterprise is not a HomeVestors franchise, she mentioned. The lawsuit was settled in chapter courtroom.)

And in 2021, the lawyer for an aged man in California accused a franchisee of benefiting from the person’s “weak spot of thoughts resulting from age” to persuade him to promote his home for $175,000 beneath market worth. (A HomeVestors spokesperson mentioned the corporate was unaware of this case and has since despatched a letter informing the franchisee it might be in violation of its franchise settlement for not disclosing the litigation. The case was settled out of courtroom.)

Martha Swanson, an 83-year-old Georgia girl who had suffered a sequence of small strokes, bought her home to a HomeVestors franchise for $82,111, then spent the final three years of her life agonizing over cash, together with the best way to pay the $3,000-a-month value of her assisted residing heart.

“That’s simply not moral,” her daughter, Sherry Nixon, informed ProPublica.

In Swanson’s case, the franchise engaged in “wholesaling,” flipping the property to a different investor for a better value with out making any enhancements to it. The result’s a piece of fairness going to the flipper as an alternative of the home-owner — cash Swanson desperately wanted, Nixon mentioned. The follow has come beneath regulatory scrutiny in a number of states.

The franchise proprietor who purchased Swanson’s home mentioned he “takes nice care” when coping with aged folks and would have let her out of the contract if she had requested.

Martha Swanson

Credit score:
Courtesy of Sherry Nixon

HomeVestors mentioned it encourages its franchises to solely rehab one home at a time, whereas wholesaling different properties they purchase. Its spokesperson additionally mentioned the corporate doesn’t goal aged householders, including that individuals over 70 accounted for lower than 20% of its sellers. Almost a 3rd of their purchases are from folks older than 65.

Corrine Casanova lived solely 19 days after signing away her house. Shortly after she died, considered one of her neighbors discovered a handwritten be aware from Evans on her doorstep and known as David. The be aware was a reminder that escrow was about to shut. When David realized what had occurred, he was enraged.

“I’ll by no means promote to you,” he informed the corporate. “I’ll by no means allow you to on this home ever once more for what you probably did to my mother.”

Hostage to the Deal

Patriot Holdings wasn’t about to stroll away from Casanova’s home.

5 days after David confronted the corporate, the franchise filed a breach of contract lawsuit in opposition to him. Additionally they recorded a discover of an possession dispute in opposition to the title known as a lis pendens that makes it almost unimaginable to promote to anybody else.

It’s common for a lot of HomeVestors franchises to file such lawsuits when house owners attempt to cancel a sale, or to document a lis pendens or related paperwork — termed “clouding a title” — as a solution to tie an proprietor to a deal. ProPublica discovered greater than 50 franchisees clouding titles or suing for breach of contract in additional than a dozen states. Some franchises have filed solely a handful of lawsuits — although getting an correct depend is troublesome as a result of disputes are sometimes settled confidentially via arbitration. Others, together with some franchises acknowledged by HomeVestors as high performers, continuously clouded titles.

One Florida franchise, Hello-Land Properties, has filed two dozen breach of contract lawsuits since 2016 and clouded titles on greater than 300 properties by recording notices of a gross sales contract. In a single case, it sued an aged man so incapacitated by sickness he couldn’t depart his home.

Hello-Land Properties has been named HomeVestors’ Nationwide Franchise of the Yr 5 occasions. In 2017, Hicks, the HomeVestors CEO, praised Hi-Land’s proprietor as a “loyal, hardworking franchisee who has nicely represented our nationwide model, greatest practices and values.”

See Also

Cory Evans’ franchise, Patriot Holdings, filed breach of contract lawsuits as lately as 2019. Throughout mediation on one case, the corporate demanded $150,000 to stroll away, in response to the home-owner’s daughter.

“Why would you maintain folks hostage?” she mentioned. “That’s insane.”

Some flippers argue it’s a vital follow to guard their investments, noting that as quickly as a contract is signed, a property begins costing them cash, together with inspection and title charges and financing prices.

Actual property consultants, nevertheless, say HomeVestors franchisees’ giant quantity of lawsuits and title notices will not be solely indicative of a predatory enterprise follow, it’s a tacit acknowledgment that sellers usually later be taught of higher choices.

“Individuals normally try and again out of offers they didn’t perceive,” mentioned Sarah Bolling Mancini, a employees legal professional on the Nationwide Shopper Legislation Middle. “If your corporation mannequin is convincing householders to signal a purchase-and-sale contract primarily based on misrepresentations in regards to the worth of the house,” she mentioned, it’s going to result in plenty of sellers who “wish to again out later.”

Charles Tassell, chief working officer of the Nationwide Actual Property Traders Affiliation, added that clouding titles will not be thought-about “regular follow” within the business.

“Is there a reduction for promoting rapidly or doing one thing with money like that? Sure,” he mentioned. “However if you begin cloudingtitles and such, that begins happening a complete completely different street.”

Donald Cameron, proprietor of Hello-Land Properties, denied that clouding titles is a predatory follow and famous he usually helps folks with groceries or electrical payments whereas he tries to purchase their properties. The recorded contract is critical to beat back different traders making an attempt to purchase the property. He mentioned he sued the person who had fallen sick as a result of he had superior him $4,000. He additionally mentioned he adopted HomeVestors’ coverage of involving the person’s grownup son within the discussions. The person died shortly earlier than the courtroom issued a default judgment in Cameron’s favor.

“My workplace has purchased over 2,000 properties since becoming a member of HomeVestors in 2005 and take nice pleasure in doing issues the proper method,” he mentioned.

HomeVestors mentioned it was unaware franchises had made clouding titles a routine enterprise follow. In response to ProPublica’s reporting, the corporate has prohibited it.

Within the April 18 name recording obtained by ProPublica, HomeVestors’ management admonished franchises that continuously interact in clouding titles. “Clearly, it’s only a unhealthy follow that we aren’t snug with,” mentioned Maren Kasper, managing director of Bayview Asset Administration, the funding administration agency that purchased HomeVestors in 2022.

Lawmakers have acknowledged that stress and abusive ways wanting fraud are so frequent in some industries {that a} client wants extra safety. In timeshare gross sales, for instance, some states require an outlined rescission interval that permits a purchaser to again out. A “free-look” interval is constructed into shopping for annuities. Lemon legal guidelines for used vehicles are additionally frequent.

Such protections are largely absent for householders coping with home flippers.

However some states and cities have begun to enact rules. For instance, in Philadelphia, home flippers are required to offer potential sellers with a “bill of rights” that identifies assets to assist determined householders and describes how they will get a good value.

“I imply, I get 24 hours once I purchase a aircraft ticket, proper?” mentioned Shamus Curler, govt director of the Nationwide Housing Legislation Undertaking. “In these sorts of unlicensed conditions, there must be a sure greater stage of safety when there aren’t professionals concerned on the facet of the vendor.”

“The Solely Ones That Aren’t Caving In”

In contrast to most of the householders cornered by “Ugly Conditions,” David Casanova had money and time to combat the HomeVestors franchise for his mom’s home.

After Patriot Holdings sued to carry the Casanovas to the gross sales contract, David filed a cross-complaint alleging fraud and elder abuse. Evans, he claimed, used “affection, intimidation and coercion” to get Corrine to signal the contract.

For almost three years, Patriot Holdings fought for the home. The corporate didn’t launch its declare till Evans grew to become the topic of a felony investigation over his dealings with two aged victims in Ventura County.

In August 2020, Evans pleaded responsible to 2 felony counts of tried grand theft of actual property. He obtained a suspended jail sentence, dropped his lawsuits in opposition to each victims and paid restitution. He was prohibited from “any transaction involving the acquisition or sale of actual property” throughout his probation. Finally, in accordance with California legislation, his conviction was expunged.

When Evans was convicted, HomeVestors ought to have terminated its franchise settlement with Patriot Holdings, in response to the phrases of the franchise settlement. Patriot Holdings is considered one of HomeVestors’ highest producing franchises. As an alternative, HomeVestors required Cory Evans to be eliminated as an proprietor of the franchise he ran together with his brothers Cody, Chris and Casey Evans and accomplice Scott Mansfield, a spokesperson mentioned. However, inner HomeVestors records show Cory Evans listed alongside his brothers on a 2021 “complete gross sales quantity” award. The HomeVestors spokesperson mentioned Cory Evans was mistakenly included on the award.

Patriot Holdings not makes use of the lawyer who initiated the lawsuit in opposition to the Casanova household, in response to a HomeVestors spokesperson. The lawyer has represented different franchises and has attended firm conventions.

“We’re not conscious of any complaints because the elimination of Cory Evans from the franchise,” the spokesperson mentioned.

Neither Cory Evans nor his brothers responded to interview requests.

After the combat for Corrine Casanova’s home was over, David bought it for $510,000 — $235,000 greater than Evans had tried to pay for it. David mentioned he did not one of the repairs Evans had insisted, beneath oath, have been vital.

Now it’s David’s flip to refuse to stroll away: He’s utilizing proceeds from the sale to proceed his elder abuse lawsuit in opposition to Patriot Holdings. A trial date is ready for June.

“Nonetheless, right now, mainly, they do not really feel they did something incorrect,” he mentioned. “They haven’t any empathy for what they put my mother or her household via for the final six years.

“They thrive on this, they usually push you, push you, push you. And so far as I do know, we’re the one ones that are not caving in.”

Assist ProPublica Examine “We Purchase Homes” Practices

For those who’ve had expertise with an organization or purchaser promising quick money for properties, our reporting workforce needs to listen to about it.


Sarah Smith contributed reporting. Ug Spot Illustrations by Carlo Cadenas for ProPublica.

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