Monday 1 April 2024

‘We’re Dealing with a Nightmare’: Squatters Sue NYC Couple After Allegedly Taking Over Their Property


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Two alleged squatters are suing the owners of a duplex after they were accused of making themselves at home in the pricey Queens residence and refusing to move out.

The home’s price was listed at $930,000, the New York Post reported Sunday. The outlet noted New York City has “permissive” laws when it comes to such situations.

Property owner Juliya Fulman, who is facing over $4,000 in legal fees while battling the suit, told the outlet the situation was unfair and homeowners should be protected by city officials.

The Post noted that in the five boroughs, squatters have legal protections if they occupy a property for 30 days.

Social media users shared their thoughts on the Post report, one individual writing, “So… squatters don’t have money to pay rent or a mortgage…but they can afford lawyers to sue homeowners?”

“Keep voting Democrat people. Pretty soon you’ll own nothing and neck high in debt,” another user commented.

Meanwhile, Fulman’s husband, Denis Kurlyand, said he wants officials to take action.

He added, “What did we do? Nothing. We put up a property for rent, and that’s it, now we’re dealing with a nightmare.”

In early March, the couple’s real estate broker, identified as Ejona Bardhi, noticed the home’s locks had been changed after tenants had been secured for the residence. She also saw a man inside the house. At that point several men exited the house, allegedly to intimidate her as she tried to call police for help.

The pair of alleged squatters was identified as Lance Hunt Sr. and Rondie L. Francis, who said they had been in the home since January.

Police later told Bardhi and the homeowners they were not allowed to change the locks on the house, the Post article continued:

Hunt Sr. and Francis returned to the property a day later, brandishing what they claimed was a lease agreement signed by Bardhi. But Fulman and Kurlyand were prepared, presenting officers with ownership documents and timestamped videos showing the house had been vacant, the homeowners told The Post.

Police then escorted the men from the property, and the owners changed the locks. Upon entering, the couple found their freshly renovated home marred by the trespassers’ utter disregard for their ill-gotten digs, including scuffed-up wood floors, scratches on walls and the smell of marijuana permeating the residence.

Bardhi eventually received court documents notifying her of the lawsuit.

The alleged squatters were later given an emergency lockout hearing in court. According to Kurlyand, the pair presented documents that did not appear to be legitimate.

Now, everyone involved is awaiting another court appearance scheduled for Friday.

The news comes as an elderly couple who wanted to retire and live in their dream home so they could care for their disabled son was unable to do so because a squatter refused to leave the New York City property, Breitbart News reported in February.

In addition, a property owner in Atlanta, Georgia, has been working to reclaim his property from squatters who took over his land, according to Breitbart News.

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