The Breakdown of Property Law: The Boca Raton Squatter Edition

I always suspected that when I posted about the breakdown of property law that accompanied the collapse of Big Shitpile (aka the housing crisis) some readers thought I was being a little over the top. Well, it turns out this is giving the riffraff an excellent opportunity to do some high-end squatting:

Andre Barbosa can safely say that he has one of the nicest homes on the block in Boca Raton, Florida.

But the 23-year-old Brazilian national does not own or even rent the palatial $2.5million estate legally – he is a squatter.

Barbosa, originally from the neighboring Pompano Beach, moved into 580 Golden Harbour Drive in July

Now he is threatening to use an obscure real estate law that allows people to claim a property as their own if they stay there for seven years.

No one witnessed Barbosa breaking into the 7,522-squae foot, five-bedroom, six-bathroom waterfront home, so he cannot be arrested.

And Bank of America, which foreclosed on the house, so far has done nothing to evict the 23-year-old and reclaim the property.

Admittedly, one could have a good chuckle about this particular case, though if the guy were a violent paroled felon prone to anger, then maybe it’s not so funny.

I’m surprised this doesn’t happen more often, especially by people who are being foreclosed on–drag it out, and maybe you get the bank to settle after all.

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5 Responses to The Breakdown of Property Law: The Boca Raton Squatter Edition

  1. Oh, squatting is definitely very common down here in Florida. We’ve got a lot of people living in poverty and a lot of foreclosed real estate, which makes ideal conditions for it. I’m also vaguely connected to some of the radical communities down here who make that sort of off-the-grid living a point of pride, so maybe I’m just more aware of this sort of thing by hearing about it tangentially all the time.

  2. Jim Thomerson says:

    I wonder if adverse possession law applies here.

  3. NewEnglandBob says:

    This story is a couple of months old. He was evicted (new locks when he want around) and BofA took it back.

    (I winter in Boynton Beach, 15 miles away)

  4. Flávio D says:

    For Brazil, where I was born, this is nothing new. Squatters are everywhere and they even have their own political wing, the “Homeless Action” (Movimento dos Sem Terra), a sort of Ocuppy-like organization that has been around since the 80s.

  5. kamanalono says:

    Question is: “can anyone truly OWN anything?”. No one, for example, has the foggiest idea of what, where, when or why the Mind is yet it is the Mind that is in control of every aspect of ourselves. Our relationship with our minds is akin to a vehicals relationship with its driver in that we only do what the driver wants us to and nothing more. How then can we claim to ‘own’ our bodies? If we could truly own our bodies we would be forever young, forever slim, forever swift, forever strong, forever brave, forever beautiful, and last but not least we would be Forever!

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