Wednesday, June 10, 2015

THE HOUSE FROM HELL

I feel that I am a character in a Greek play or star in the Perils of Pauline. I have been too embarrassed by the multitude of mistakes I have made in the arena of real estate investing to keep up my blog. But a new wrinkle has occurred with the House From Hell in Kansas City MO.

Most recently I contacted the Jackson County Assessor’s office to see why I had not received a property tax bill for this year. I was told the house was going into foreclosure for the second time on August 28, 2015 because of non-payment of back property taxes from 2011. I told the clerk this was not possible because the taxes were paid last year to bring everything up to date and that the only taxes I should owe were for this year. She said the matter had been turned over to the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for bad checks and I would have to contact them.

But let me set the stage so you will understand why I call this the House From Hell.
As you may have read in my previous blogs I bought the house at one of the first real estate seminars (The Flipping Formula) that I attended after I had retired. The purchase was made June 15, 2013. It took a couple of months to get the purchase finalized because I was buying this through my IRA and I had to open a new Self Directed IRA that could own real estate property.

The property finally closed escrow in August 12, 2013 but I never received a HUD Statement or documentation showing the closure. I had to beg for a copy of the Warranty Deed from Marquis Properties. Nearly a year later come to find out that the original Warranty Deed had the wrong parcel number, wrong parcel address, and wrong legal description. So I had been beating my head against the wall trying to collect rent on the wrong house. (You can read more about that in previous blogs)

In the meantime, I was continually badgering the property manager and the former owner that I was not getting paid the rent for my property. I was informed by Marquis Properties that they had figured out the problem on the property and they were taking care of it. I received one check for rent owed. Marquis Properties, the seller of the property, determined that the information on the Warranty Deed was incorrect and they provided a corrected Warranty Deed to Jackson County. Unfortunately, they did not provide the information to me so I was still functioning with incorrect information.

After many more months of misinformation and promises, and fighting to evict the non-paying tenants I received a notice in late March 2014 from Ruskin Heights HOA that my HOA dues were overdue. First, I didn’t know I had a property that was in an HOA. Also on the letter it stated that my property address was on TERRACE. I contacted Ruskin and told them that I didn’t have a property on TERRACE, my property was on STREET. Sandy at Ruskin was very diligent and contacted me back to tell me that her documentation showed my property was on TERRACE and furthermore that the property was going into foreclosure because of non-payment of back property taxes. It was due to go to tax auction on May 1, 2014. Sandy provided me with a copy of the warranty deed and the tax information that she pulled up from the Jackson County Tax Collector’s website.
  
I immediately contacted Marquis Properties and notified them that I had purchased this property as free of all tax liens and debts. I also asked why they had not sent me a copy of the corrected Warranty Deed. All this time I had been harassing tenants at the wrong address and trying to collect rent from the wrong tenants. Marquis stated that the previous owner was supposed to pay the back taxes but since they had not Marquis would pay the taxes. They stated they took a check to Jackson County and paid on April 28, 2014 10:54 am. A short time after this I went on the Jackson County web site and saw that a payment had been “Tendered” for the “Amount Due” of $2,569.04.

Stupid-me did not adequately review the “corrected” warranty deed or the address of the “owner” on the Jackson County, Property Account Summary or I would have realized that for the second time an incorrect address had been listed on the Warranty Deed. This time the incorrect address was for the new property owner--Horizon Trust (my representative and the owner of the SDIRA). Instead the warranty deed listed HORIZON TRUST as owner, but listed MARQUIS PROPERTIES’ mailing address.

There have been many other mishaps and disasters with this property but let’s jump ahead to present day:

I contacted Jackson County Assessor’s office and was informed that the house was going to tax auction for the second time on August 28, 2015 for non-payment of back taxes. I was also informed that the payment made in April 2014 was with a bad check and collection had been turned over to the Jackson County Prosecuting Attorney’s office.

I contacted the Jackson County Prosecuting Attorney’s office and was informed that the payment on April 28, 2014 was an online payment that came back to the County as insufficient funds.  The Prosecutor’s office indicated that two notices had been sent out to Marquis Properties, 871 E 1420 N, Orem UT. 1) July 17, 2014—10 day notice to correct the payment, 2) July 31, 2014 to appear. Both notices had been ignored so the check was sent for collection by the Prosecuting Attorney’s office. Shelley in the Prosecutor’s office informed me that the only way to correct this problem was to provide two cashier’s checks or sufficient money orders: 1) $80.00 made out to Jackson County; 2) $2594.44 made out to Jackson County Collections. She stated these could NOT be wired and must be presented to:

Jackson County Prosecuting
Attorneys Bad Check Unit
321 W. Lexington, Suite. 100
Independence, MO 64050
Phone: (816) 881-4640
Fax: (816) 881-4526

This of course does not account for any additional taxes, fees, or fines that accrued since this bad check was written.


I have sent a notice to Marquis Properties regarding this matter and have been assured that the issue will be resolved. We will see.

1 comment:

  1. Sorry to hear about this. Being new to the business and reading (for lack of better words) mistakes others have made I am just wondering how this turned out. Aside from verifying addresses what else would you have done differently? Last question; do you use zillow, truilla or google earth when looking at "unseen" investment properties?

    ReplyDelete