Emptied out home
After returning home from a long day at work on Monday, the last thing28-year-old single mother Leanne Dumais expected was to have herkitchen gutted.
The kitchen sink, the cupboards, the appliances — all gone.
After returning home from a long day at work on Monday, the last thing 28-year-old single mother Leanne Dumais expected was to have her kitchen gutted.
Dumais says her landlord told her city inspectors were coming in and everything would be back by Tuesday, but that wasn’t the case.
“Not only was my kitchen still missing, he took out half the backyard too, the fence, the porch,” she said. “He basically took everything in the house worth anything that belonged to him.”
That’s when Dumais called him incessantly and when he finally answered, she said he told her the home was being foreclosed and he hasn’t answered her calls since.
“So now I have 30 days to get out, and even if I stay that long, I don’t have a kitchen,” she said. She alleges he also took her May rent and $1,000 damage deposit.
Dumais is a single mom of a seven-year-old daughter and both are now forced to put their belongings in storage and stay at her father’s because she can’t afford to move now.
Apparently homes being gutted before foreclosure is a practice that isn’t entirely uncommon, according to a city realtor.
Calgary real-estate agent Jamal Al-Ghabari said when homes are foreclosed they are sold as is and buyers are warned certain things might be missing.
“I have seen this before where the owner has taken the cupboards or counter tops or appliances, before the home is foreclosed,” he said.
“Even landlords — sometimes they do it, too.”
But Al-Ghabari said tenants could get their money back through the court system and hopes police are alerted to these business practices. And while economic forces have increased the number of city foreclosures, Al-Ghabari said he hasn’t heard of an increase in this type of incident.
Repeated calls to the landlord went unanswered.