An infirmed elderly man has no choice but to sell his Northern Virginia home after a squatter has refused to leave. A woman reportedly convinced the homeowner that she had fallen on hard times and needed a place to stay. The man offered her the basement, but after three years she has yet to leave and does not pay rent. The story was first reported by the New York Post.
The five-bedroom home, located not far from Washington D.C., is listed for $800,000 and is currently under contract. Zinta Rodger-Rickert, the listing agent with RE/MAX Gateway, told the New York Post that a squatter is currently taking advantage of a sick, elderly homeowner.
The listing stated that only cash offers are being accepted and that there is “NO ACCESS to see the lower level of the home,” adding it will be sold “as is only.” This would appear to indicate that a squatter is currently occupying the property. “There will be “acknowledgment,” the listing said, “that [the] home will convey with a person(s) living [on the] lower level with no lease in place,” the listing continued.
“Three years ago, a woman was cleaning the senior owner’s house and she convinced him that she needed a place to stay,” Rodger-Rickert said. “So he offered her the basement, but then she never left. And she does not pay rent.”
“It is essentially an individual taking advantage of a senior who is ill and currently in the hospital. He will likely end up in hospice,” the real estate agent continued.
The Post reported that a man named Thomas Burke has owned the home since 1997, when he purchased it for $319,000, which would amount to about $576,000 today. Burke, now 79, does not have a will, Rodger-Rickert told The Post that his family is hoping to sell the home before he passes away. According to the Post, Burke’s family does not have the resources to hire a lawyer in order to evict the squatter.
“We are hoping the next owner will want to deal with that process,” Rodger-Rickert said.
Rodger-Rickert told the New York Post that the home went into contract on Tuesday after just three days on the market. This was expected given the property’s close proximity to Washington D.C.