This ordeal actually began in 2014 when I agreed to let J.M. park his vehicles on my property. He also wanted to store some furniture and other belongings in the old house building that is on my property where I also have my garage and my manufactured home that I live in. The old house building is an off grade wooden structure that was moved to my property many years before. I was told the building used to be a military barracks building. In 2014 I was using the old house building for storage of my own things. We moved all my stored things into my already full garage. I told J.M. that I did not have plans to sell my property but I also told him that I didn’t want to do anything to hinder my ability to sell my property. I drafted an agreement but J.M. wouldn’t sign the agreement; I revised it several times but he never signed it.
Jump forward to 2015, due to my growing concern about J.M. using my property and the stuff everywhere, I consulted an attorney who specializes in real estate matters. I was relieved when she talked with me and cited several Florida Statutes that protect me, but I was growing anxious to move, mainly due to financial reasons, selling my property to gain the equity that would enable me to pay cash for a small homestead in a different area.
Jump forward to 2016, I decided to sell my property for reasons before mentioned. I told J.M. I intended to sell my property as commercial potential and that the old house building would likely be bulldozed to clear property for commercial use; my garage is the only structure that has commercial use because it is metal building on slab built to commercial specifications, it is 28′ x 64′ with 10′ side wall height with roll up doors on both ends of building, plus two man doors, and four windows on sides of garage building. R&K built it in 2003 and Riley Electric wired it to commercial code standard metal conduit. My manufactured home would likely be bulldozed too but I can have it moved. Although J.M. had not signed the agreement, and I am not legally bound, I told him he could move the building off my property because he had done a lot of work on the old building to make it viable for his own purpose and I felt sure that it would be bulldozed by any buyer of my property. I listed with a real estate agent in March 2016 and I informed J.M. at that time that he needed to make arrangement to move his stuff off my property. He wanted to buy my property but said he couldn’t obtain conventional financing. I suggested to him that he buy some acreage nearby and move all his stuff including the old house building. He had plenty of time to make arrangements but he was angry and in my opinion his use of my property was causing me to lose potential buyers.
Jump forward to 2017, J.M. informed me that he had bought some property and he began moving his stuff. J.M. told me several times over the past year that he didn’t intend to move the old house building and he never mentioned tearing building apart. He left April 17, 2017 when he and his “helpers” moved numerous loads of stuff off my property but they left behind quite a mess and damage to my property – see pictures taken to document on the drop down menu at top of this page – J.M. returned with a “helper” about 1:30 am April 18th, the outdoor security light floods the area in front of my garage where they were working, I watched from my back porch while he loaded a vehicle onto a trailer and miscellaneous items onto truck and trailer, then his “helper” followed J.M. in the last vehicle that had been left on my property. J.M. had a storage POD in driveway that was picked up on April 18, 2017.
J.M. messaged me on April 20 that he was busy and didn’t know when he would return. I communicated to him my dismay with the mess; I gave him until end of April to clean up and clear off everything that belongs to him. He messaged me that he planned to let someone tear apart the building. I communicated that before I would allow any more demolition of the old building that county permits may need to be purchased, insurance bond would have to be posted, and a detailed agreement would have to be signed because I could be left with an even worse mess than is there now, not to mention the liability such activity could create. On April 21 he acknowledged my communication.
On April 24 I showed my Real Estate agent the mess all around the outside yard area so she could see why we can’t have any perspective buyers coming to look at my property until I get this dealt with. I also had her peer in through windows to see the tear out. I have lost countless potential buyers due to the situation with J.M. storing stuff on my property over the past year. I listed my property with a local Real Estate company March of 2016 and that is when I gave J.M. notice so he has had plenty of time to move his stuff. I told him a couple years ago I wanted to see the old house preserved and moved to new location when I sell my property because any buyer will be investing for commercial potential and won’t keep that old house. I told him if he didn’t want to move it then I probably would move it once I sell my property. When I said the house could be moved I intended for a licensed house mover to be hired such as Stone’s House Movers because they are licensed and bonded. I gave J.M. their contact information over a year ago.
J.M. changed the lock so I couldn’t get inside with my key. I could only see through windows when I inspected on the 18th, I could see he had torn out flooring, doors, cabinets, casings, and all such stuff of interior. I would have understood if J.M. would have talked to me and told me he wanted to take those things but to damage property and leave this mess is not acceptable. I actually had walked over on the night of the April 17 to ask J.M. if he might want to sell me the air conditioner he had in old house building but it was gone and that’s when I saw the mess everywhere and looked through windows to see stuff ripped out. He also had a fence up which is why I had not seen all the stuff strewn about but he had removed fence also and left holes and broken concrete behind. I’m not sure why he stopped tearing out the floating laminate flooring, he is welcome to it, I would have helped J.M. remove it. It could all be stacked in J.M.’s storage trailer that remains on my property as well as all the other stuff he left piled up all over my yard, such as the tires, wood piles, tarps, containers, so much stuff everywhere, could be loaded into that storage trailer so he could then move it all at once but he chose to do what he did instead. Not only did J.M. change the lock on the front door of the old house building but he also had a slide bolt on back door so even though my key opened door I couldn’t get in that door either; I could smell an awful stench coming from inside the house when I had opened back door when I discovered slide bolt only allowed it to open about 3″ but I couldn’t see inside from the back without getting a ladder to look in windows. I sent J.M. a message by text requesting that he return and replace my lock on front door but he didn’t comply. I reiterated that he only had until April 30, 2017 to finish cleaning up and clearing off his stuff from my property.
To see the many other pictures I took to document this ordeal go to menu at top of this page and see on drop down menu to see pages of pictures listed by date taken.
On April 29 I decided to climb ladder to try to go inside window on back side of house because I found a window that I could pry up. I was smelling bad smells around house and when I opened the window and looked inside I saw the big turtle floating in aquarium! I thought maybe it was dead and that was the bad smell. I climbed inside and opened doors to air out the house.
To see more about the turtle and see pictures go to the top of page to the drop down menu.