My question involves real estate located in the State of: NY
Hello All - stumbled upon this forum and thought it might be a good place to see if anyone would be able to offer advice or has been in a similar situation.
Back in 2010 we were having trouble paying for our mortgage, we missed a few months and were trying to work out a loan modification with the lenders. The two-family house is under my brothers name, and he was not living on the property, we had a hard time with the loan modification because they said it was listed as an investment property.
A family friend introduced us to a friend of his saying that he could help. The help offered was that he would take over the property, pay the current mortgage and also pay the back mortgage - this was all so that it would save my brothers credit. At this point, all we cared about was saving my brothers credit and were willing to let the house go.
My brother met with this "friend" and signed some documents. I'm not sure what was signed and we were not given any copies (yes I know, not smart at all), it might have been power of attorney or some sort of transfer. This happened in August 2010.
I stayed in the basement of the house paying rent ($800) to the new "owner." After a series of events between me and him, I decided to leave and move out in February 2011.
My brother has been receiving statements and collections for the mortgage up till now. So needless to say, this "friend" did nothing to fix his credit, and I don't believe he paid any of the mortgage at all. There are tenants in the 1st floor and 2nd floor - the total rent back in 2010 was $3,000
I'm not sure what to do at this point as my brother doesn't either. It seems like he's been pocketing the rent money and not paying anything to the lenders, further ruining my brothers credit. If my calculations are right ($3,800 for 20 months) he has pocketed $76,000.
So my question is ... what legal action can we take with this? And, who owns the property if we're still receiving statements in my brothers name?
Is it safe to assume that we still own the property and he just scammed us for the past year and a half, and we can just walk in and take the property back??
Any help would be much appreciated!