It may not be a bad deal to move into a foreclosed property, especially if you don’t have to pay rent. It’s called squatting, and a group called Operation Welcome Home is celebrating a Madison woman’s move into a vacant home on the city’s West side.
Desiree Wilson and her two children recently moved into the property. With the help of the group, she fixed up the house and changed the locks. Wilson had been living in a single bedroom with her children with relatives.
The home is currently owned by a Verona man, but Bank of America has a lien on the property. Operation Welcome Home’s Z. Haukness argues that Bank of America has already received billions in federal bail-outs, and he’s calling on a judge to grant control of the property over to a public land trust.
If that happened, he says Wilson could be charged rent on the property and could continue to live there.
An auction is set to take place next week. Until then, the group is asking law enforcement not to take action against them, such as removing Wilson from the property.
Dane County Sheriff Dave Mahoney says his department does not get involved unless they are a contacted, which they haven’t been yet.
AUDIO: Robin Colbert reports (:57)