The squatter, reports the South Florida Sun-Sentinel (WARNING: Auto-play video) via CBS12 (Another auto-play video), is attempting to make that fashionable, retro claim of adverse possession on the property.
Adverse possession laws date back to a much older time, when landowners would simply abandon their property and move elsewhere. Enterprising folk could move into these homes and, after years of maintaining them and paying things like taxes and utilities, rightfully claim them as their own. In Florida, that time frame is seven years.
So Bank of America, which currently owns the foreclosed property, only needs to show evidence that it is the rightful owner and the 23-year-old Brazilian national, who has started calling the place “Templo de Kamisamar” and has posted a notice on the front door reading that he is a “living beneficiary to the Divine Estate being superior of commerce and usury,” would be out on the street.
But one neighbor tells the Sun-Sentinel that she went to BofA and even told them that she is prepared to buy the property.
“They haven’t even called me back,” she says.
The bank also did not return the paper’s request for comment.
UPDATE: A rep for BofA provided the following statement to Consumerist —
“We have been in communication with the Boca Raton Police Department regarding the concerns with the occupants of [the bank-owned property]. There is a certain legal process we are required by law to follow and we have filed the appropriate action. The bank is taking this situation seriously and we will work diligently to resolve this matter.”
Neighbors say they called the police on the squatter, who filed adverse possession paperwork with the county shortly after the property was foreclosed on in July.
Since no one actually witnessed him breaking into the house, cops say they can not arrest the man.
Adverse possession has been growing in popularity in the area, with 19 cases filed in the county last year alone.
Here are just a handful of the adverse possession incidents we’ve covered in recent years:
Homeowner Has To Share House With Squatter Because Police Can’t Do Anything