Outsquatting the Squatters

Landlords are now beating squatters at their own game. They are learning how to turn the tables by squatting on the squatters.

This concept of invading the homes of the squatters was made very public by Mr. Flash Shelton: He became a national inspiration to landlords when he employed bold strategies to evict a mother-daughter grifter team from his mother’s family home.

The dramatic event was recorded by Mr. Shelton and uploaded on YouTube.

His amateur production of outwitting the mother-daughter grifter team offered a glimpse of what could be accomplished when the injured party (i.e. landlord) refuses to be handcuffed by an inept and morally bankrupt judicial system. He is a handyman by trade and used to getting the job done himself.

Landlords must have been gobsmacked by the simplicity of his strategy as evidenced by the more than two million views in less than 48 hours. The informal eviction process would prove to take approximately 24 hours.

Shelton simply staked out his mother’s home and waited for the grifters to leave: Then he proceeded to enter the premises to install security cameras, change the locks, and record the squatters’ personal property piled high in every room. The grifters appeared ready for a long and cozy stay, placing their expectations on the law-abiding landlord getting lost in the nightmare of drawn-out legal filings and costly judicial fees.

Things did not go as anticipated for the squatters.

They returned to the home to find Shelton waiting for them and waiving a lease in their face (with his mother naming him as the legal tenant) and alerting them to the changes in the house. “Ninety percent of the time,” Mr. Shelton says, “The lock-out procedure works.” That’s his strategy of choice.

One can only guess at the number of landlords watching the YouTube outtakes -- which (of course) the handyman produced himself -- and wished they had demonstrated the same determination and tactics to remove con artists from their properties.

The actions of Shelton signals a new era in the squatting crisis in which landlords must depend on themselves to avoid what could potentially erupt into months or years of legal wrangling.

And squatters certainly know their "rights." Many of them refuse to give an inch initially because they realize if they can hang on for 30 days or longer, they enter a new tier of protection for their illegal behavior in the bluest of blue states. Who would have thought it possible that the longer you engage in violating the law the more protection you’ll receive under the law in “progressive” states?

Shelton is teaching landlords an invaluable lesson as he gains more and more notoriety on YouTube and appears in a multitude of media interviews. He has pointed out that as a tenant he has more rights than a landlord.

Whereas a landlord cannot enter his or her own premises, Shelton, armed with a new lease, can walk in on the squatters proclaiming his status as the new occupant and becoming the squatters’ worst nightmare. That is exactly what he’s doing for landlords who have heard of the handyman and have engaged his services for days or weeks at the fixed rate of $5,000.00

Shelton is not above eating the squatters’ food, occupying their favorite spot for television watching, or blasting loud music. Can he do that? Apparently, he’s doing it routinely and he has yet to get arrested. After all, he’s a tenant: And just like squatters, he, too, has rights. The advice Shelton gives landlords may not match the instructions offered by high-priced law firms (no other kind), but his tactics have proven effective for a fraction of the cost.

Shelton receives hundreds of calls from landlords seeking advice after having been failed by the legal system. He offers his services (via Zoom) for a nominal $150.00 fee (which has been donated to a non-profit aimed at changing the corrupt legal system).

There is some hope on the horizon for landlords.

The squatters may wish to place themselves on high alert with landlords changing tactics in the face of this unprecedented surge in criminal cases: Shelton is hardly alone among an emerging group of informal eviction servers.

The “squatter hunters” are growing exponentially in step with the epidemic of shocking tales involving families and landlords feeling caught in a cycle of nightmarish encounters with con artists.

Horror stories abound over serial squatters turning homes into strip clubs and hosting all-night parties. Those scenarios are only matched by squatters who have developed a taste for the high life and move into posh neighborhoods. Sang Kim, a case in point, made headlines as a “serial squatter” who refused to move out of a $2 million Seattle property.

Kim and his wife, have enjoyed the benefits of a broken legal system as evidenced by their record as serial squatters: They failed to pay rent on a $1.3 million property at their previous residence for (wait for it) two years. This became known to residents in the Seattle area where the Kims currently live. Neighbors are now backing frustrated landlords, and 200 residents congregated outside of Kim’s squatter-location to protest his presence.

This is often the tipping point for squatters -- getting exposed in the media.

Shelton routinely used that psychological ploy when confronting illegals tenants. He assures the grifters that he has recorded them and he will expose their conversations and their actions on YouTube for all the world to view. Or they can decide to move out.

Squatters may find their lucrative tactics -- from showing fake leases to filing for bankruptcy -- coming up against a new wave of beleaguered landlords turning to “alternative sources” for seeking justice (of course) outside of the judicial system.

If you experience technical problems, please write to helpdesk@americanthinker.com