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Veteran Thought He Paid for Home, Now Neighbors Suing

Veteran News
Veteran News
October 12, 2016
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Danny Shedd has served as a Veteran for 12 years, and toured Iraq and Afghanistan in that time. After recently leaving the service, he and his wife decided to buy a property out in the country and settle down there.The home they saw in Big Cabin, Oklahoma, with four bedrooms and a huge yard, was a match made in heaven for the couple and their growing family. Or so they thought.After negotiations, inspections, appraisals, and a $172,425 payment in cash (the result of years of dedicated saving), they finally called the place their own. Once Shedd joined his family at the home, he soon noticed that the neighbors' cows were coming onto his backyard and eating his grass. He called a surveyor to build a fence and keep the cows out. The surveyor came back with bad news.Apparently, what they had actually paid for was 10 wooded acres of land, in a flood plain; a plot completely unusable for construction of a home. The deed didn't list them as the owners of any home. Moreover, the house they were in wasn't on the plot of land in the deed, but instead to the south of the land.Essentially, the Shedd's were living in a property they don't have the rights to. And now the neighbors are trying to get them evicted, saying they own the home instead. And while, technically, they're not wrong, the Shedd's feel that an discrepancy in the deed shouldn't keep them from the home that they paid for and expected to receive; especially since the home had previously been through foreclosure, and the error had not been found or resolved then.


According to a report from Vice, this problem is fairly common, and often overlooked:

The bizarre situation speaks to a potential time bomb lurking behind an untold number of US residential mortgages. During the housing bubble that went bust in 2007 and 2008, mortgage companies routinely ignored longstanding property records laws. So defects—whether due to inaccurate deeds or fraudulent transfer documents—have sown chaos in county recording offices and foreclosure courts. These defects create ruptures in the "chain of title," confusing who holds true ownership over properties.

Although the Shedd's have fought tooth and nail to keep the home that they thought they purchased, they've received very little help. Their title insurer told them, in so many words, "Not our problem." Their appeals have largely gone unanswered. Even Fannie Mae's original offer to help eventually came with ridiculous strings attached. And when they refused to vacate the home, their neighbors lawyered up and have filed a suit against them, demanding an additional $20,000 on top of the house.Shedd describes the ordeal in full on a Youtube video he posted September 1st: you want to help Shedd and his family, please share this video or our article. Hopefully, justice will be done for our service members.

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