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Lawsuits against MV Realty pile up
North Carolina the latest to claim company misled homeowners
Add North Carolina to the growing list of states suing a Florida-based real estate company for allegedly scamming financially struggling homeowners.
MV Realty is accused of misleading homeowners by obtaining mortgages on their homes without their knowledge, WSVOC TV reported.
The company, according to North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein, paid homeowners a few hundred dollars in exchange for the right to be the listing agent in the event a homeowner decided to sell their home.
MV Realty, under the 40-year contracts, would receive money if the company sold the property, the homeowner canceled the agreement or if the property was transferred in some other way, including foreclosure or a transfer when the owner dies.
The contracts also allegedly permitted MV Realty to obtain mortgages on the homes, unbeknownst to the homeowners.
Stein’s office said in a press release that the North Carolina Department of Justice has received more than 20 complaints about MV Realty.
“We allege that MV Realty is preying on vulnerable people to trick them into unfair, long-term agreements,” Stein told the outlet. “My office is taking them to court to put them out of business.”
North Carolina joins Florida, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts, among others, that have sued MV Realty for alleged deceptive, unfair trade practices.
“I was shocked,” Philadelphia homeowner Timothy Calhoun, who entered into a contract with MV Realty, said at a hearing concerning MV Realty’s practices. “They never told me that I was signing a mortgage. If I had known that I was gonna put a mortgage on my house, I would have never had signed the agreement.”
The lawsuits in every state seek to stop MV Realty from entering into new contracts, void the existing contracts and have courts assign civil penalties to the company.
MV Realty, which operates in 33 states nationwide, previously denied it engaged in any false or deceptive practices.
“We are confident that after a full airing of the facts, the conclusion will be that MV Realty’s business transactions are legal and ethical and that our team has operated in full compliance with [Massachusetts] law,” the firm said in a statement to CBS Boston.
— Ted Glanzer