More People Claim Damage From Rental Scheme

Tuesday, February 10th 2009, 9:13 pm
By: News On 6

Editor's note: The State dismissed Count 2 against Remington in June of 2009. On June 25, 2012, Judge James Caputo ordered Count 1 dismissed with prejudice. The judge ordered Remington's record with regard to Count 1 be expunged, since Remington had satisfied the conditions set out by the court after pleading no contest.

Order of Expungement

By Lori Fullbright, The News On 6

TULSA, OK -- Two more people come forward after a News On 6 investigation uncovered a scheme where a man allegedly rented out two homes he did not own.  The homes were in foreclosure and the renters were forced to move because the properties were to be sold at sheriff's auction.

02/09/2009  Related Story:  The News On 6 Investigates: Renter Beware

A lawyer who specializes in foreclosures tells The News On 6 that the only person who has the right to rent out a home that's in foreclosure, is the person who owns it, not the mortgage company, no one but the owner up right up until the home is sold at auction and that sale is confirmed. 

Both the owners who spoke with The News On 6 say they had no idea their home was being rented to someone.

Kandia Taylor says she found a house at 1629 South 109th East Avenue on Craig's List last October for $800 a month, no deposit and signed a lease with Remington Realty and paid Mike Remington $800 in cash.

"Then, they started telling me I needed to change the locks on the house because they couldn't find the key. So, I called my fiancé' and he told them either give us our money back or produce a key," said renter Kandia Taylor.

She says a couple of hours later, they had the key, but, it only fit the front door.  She says Mike Remington told her he owned the house, but it would go up for sale in the future.

"They told me oh, it'll be another year before the house even sells, you're fine," said Kandia Taylor.  "A week later, I get a letter in the mail saying the house is being foreclosed on."

The letter notified them the sale is February 24th and they must get out.

Taylor called The News On 6 and court records show Mike Remington does not own that property.

The News On 6 contacted the homeowner, who now lives in Missouri, he said he did not know Mike Remington and did not give him permission to rent the house.

Taylor says she's out more than $3,000 in rent money to Remington.

"He's been taking my money and I've been living in someone else's home and stealing from them, basically, is the way I feel.  Unknowingly stealing from someone else," said Kandia Taylor.

Another woman, Lauren, owns a house at 2405 South 7th Street in Broken Arrow.  She and her husband faced foreclosure, so they moved to California, and then got a letter from the mortgage company saying they could keep the house, after all.

They moved back to Oklahoma and were shocked to find someone living in their home.

"I asked her if she was living here and she said yes, that she'd just rented out the property from Mike Remington and I was like, we're going to have a problem because this is my home," said Lauren.

Lauren became suspicious while living in California, because she learned someone had gotten utilities in their name at Lauren's house.

When she met the renter, Lauren called her mortgage company, who she says told her no one was to be in that home but her.

"That, it's my property and she had no business being there.  No one had any business renting it out. I had rights to it and she needed to leave," said Lauren.

The woman who was renting Lauren's home didn't want to go on camera, but confirmed that she had rented the house from Mike Remington and immediately moved out.

She said when she called Mike Remington, he reimbursed her rent money.

The News On 6 contacted Mike Remington on Tuesday to ask him about the two properties, but he did not return the calls.

Kandia Taylor says she has no idea where her family will go because they don't have money to move.  She plans to file a report with Tulsa Police.

Lauren did file a report with the Broken Arrow Police Department.