"Squatters" Evicted From $386,000 Flower Mound House

Woman says she is "extremely upset" by her family's eviction

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    A family of five was evicted Tuesday from a Flower Mound house valued at $386,000, and the new owner said they had been "squatting" there for six months.

    Squatters are people who find a vacant house, move in and claim it as their own without ever buying it. They often file property records that some prosecutors describe as fraudulent.

    Owner of $386K Home Evicts Alleged Squatters

    [DFW] New Owner of $386,000 Home Evicts Alleged Squatters
    A family of five alleged to be squatting in a Flower Mound home have been evicted by the property's new owner. The woman who was living there acknowledged moving into the house six months ago but denied that she was a "squatter," NBC 5 News’ Scott Gordon reported. (Published Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012)

    "I'm extremely upset because all my possessions are in there," said the female resident, who declined to give her name. "I live here with my three kids, and they're basically kicking us to the street."

    A deputy constable arrested her husband, Michael Edwards, on unrelated warrants. He was released from jail a few hours later, family members said.

    The new owner, who also declined to give his name, brought in movers to haul everything inside the house to the curb.

    "The man who bought the house legally wants everything out, and that's what we're doing," said professional mover Patrick Chambers.

    Chambers showed NBC 5 a sign the family had placed on the door warning against anyone "trespassing."

    "This is a squatter's rights type of thing," Chambers said. "They feel like they have the right to be somewhere without paying for it."

    The woman who was living there acknowledged moving into the house six months ago but denied that she was a "squatter."

    "I have utilities on. I pay the water bill, the electric bill, I pay gas bill, I mow the lawn," she said. "Squatters wouldn't do that."

    Asked if she paid for the house, she said she didn't know. Her husband did "the paperwork," she said.

    Several neighbors said they were surprised the eviction took so long.

    Authorities in Tarrant County have evicted and arrested several squatters, but Denton County -- where Flower Mound is located -- has seen few such cases.