Article Courtesy of ABC Action News
By Adam Walser
October 14, 2017
Tampa - Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is taking
action against a Tampa company she says is taking advantage of
financially distressed Floridians.
It involves a
company that profited from home owners association
foreclosure auctions and some of the same players ABC
Action News exposed in an I-Team investigation.
The lawsuit alleges that HOA Problem Solutions, Inc. and
a number of related companies have victimized
homeowners, renters and homeowner associations for more
than three years.
Michael Chancey is one of the principals named in the
lawsuit, which says he and his business partners operate
multiple HOA foreclosure businesses out of a Tampa strip
mall storefront, which bears a sign indicating it is a
sports marketing business.
Bondi says Chancey’s companies violate Florida's Deceptive and Unfair
Trade Practices Act.
The I-Team reported in June how Chance, his business partners and their
attorneys bought home titles at HOA foreclosure auctions for pennies on
the dollar, then rented the properties for a combined value of tens-of
thousands of dollars a month.
The lawsuit says... and tenants told us... they often weren't told the
homes were in foreclosure and that they would have to move out quickly
before their leases were up.
“They pay for it in cash and rent the house for as long as they possibly
can,” said former renter Christina Taverras. “And they gain their
profits as long as they possibly can and once the bank says it's
foreclosed, you've got to get out. Where's the families gonna go?
“There's a lot of houses. A lot of families are getting kicked out
because of this, and a lot of people don't know about this,” said former
renter Jorge Taverras.
Attorney Ryan Torres, who represents clients who lost homes at HOA
auctions, says new owners make big profits, but invest little.
“They don't pay the dues. They don't pay the taxes. What they basically
do is ride it out as long as they can and collect as much rent as they
can,” Torrens said.
The Florida Attorney General's Office is asking a judge to shut down the
businesses and to award criminal penalties of up to $15,000 for every