Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by klmno, Jan 24, 2009.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    For those not familiar with my story, let's just say my mother is very dysfunctional and has a lot of issues of her own. That being said, she is still my mother. She called me back tonight after I left a message for her.

    She said that a guy who lives near her (who doesn't work- may be retired?) wanted a piece of property she owns back in the boonies in another state. This place is not plush at all, but it's a neat little place if you like being in the woods and "roughing it" near a cool river. Anyway, he said he couldn't afford to buy it right-out, but would buy it as a rent-to-own, sight unseen. Then she said he wanted to move iinto it and rent it, to own. She said she drew up a contract herself and took it over to him.

    I nearly fell over, until she said it had not been signed yet. I told her NOT to sign it and tell him that she had talked to me and that our family was in dire straights right now and she could not go into any rent-to-own arrangement. I had been afraid for years to bring it up, but finally, I told her that being in her 70's and alone, I was concerned about people trying to take advantage of her. I told her that I knew she was not mentally incompetent (choke) and did not need to give me or anyone full power of attorney, but that it might help her deal with people pressuring her if we had an arrangement where she could not sell anything without both of our signatures.

    She said a friend used to have that kind of arrangement with her mother before she died. I don't know what that would be called- does anyone here? My mom sounded all freaked- but then again, she's always been that way. She said she took a bunch of jewelry and sent it somewhere and got a check for $68 for it. Then, she said she found a nearby place that would have given her $800 for it. I hate to think what it was really worth. My mom has NEVER been a good decision maker.

    Suggestions? Oh- to beat all, difficult child answered the phone when she called and she was asking him about this stuff first. I only got involved because when she asked him for the 3rd time what he thought she should do, he told her that she should talk to me about it. Sheeewwww- "thank you difficult child"!

    PS I'm not expecting my mother to hold to everything she has forever- I told her if she wanted to sell this place, that wass her business, but to sell it out-right. If she has someone renting it to own, what if they default and/or trash the place? She has no feasible way of getting there to keepp it under wraps and it would cost her a fortune to deal with attny's and others to handle a situation like that. I suggested that she arrange to have it appraised within the next month, then in late winter/early spring, contact one of the realtors in the area that she knows and list it for sell. She's worried about the economy- I told her I thought it would be better then than it is now.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2009
  2. mstang67chic

    mstang67chic Going Green

    I know what you're talking about but the only thing I can think of is a power of attorney. You may want to ask a family law attorney about this.
  3. ML

    ML Guest

    Definitely talk to an attorney, see if you can find one who gives a free estimate. I agree that a POA would be a good idea. I'm glad she is listening to you. Hugs, ML
  4. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    Sounds like it's time to have a fiscal power of attorney appointed for your mother. At the same time, a medical power of attorney should be appointed as well. Generally, 2 separate individuals.

    She's being taken advantage of ..... unforgivable. Saying that, there are generally state advocates for vulnerable adults available as well.
  5. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    The POA may be a good workable idea but you'd have to run it by an attorney to make sure. I've used POA's for the power to take care of the grandsons but I'm not certain how dual signatures conditions would be enforced.

    on the other hand, I do have a qualified opinion on the real estate. ;) Since your Mom evidently is impulsive by nature I don't think "waiting" until summer is going to fly. Waiting is not usually an option that works with impulse control isues. ;)

    I suggest that you quietly talk with Mom and give her a little preamble by saying that you have been concerned about her choice with the real estate not only because you are worried she might "tie the property up with documentation and not have access to it's value" BUT because with the economy and the real estate market "nobody" could know what the real value might be. Suggest that she call a professional real estate agent and request a free Comparative Market Analysis (CMA). These
    reports are "in writing" comparisons of comparable properties that are currently on the market and include comparable properties that have sold in the past year or two. There is no obligation. Realtors do these CMA's
    in hopes of being used as the listing agent should the owner decide to sell. It helps if you know the agent is honest and qualified.

    That is a "safe" action you can take right away. It might take the edge off the urge to "do something". Also, it will indicate the market conditions as they exist right now. Sometimes tentative indications of future growth or decline is included in a cover letter.

    Hope that might help. DDD
  6. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    No advice, but you've got a sympathetic ear here. My biomom is much the same way. I have had to take over her financial matters more than once, and she is not as old as your mom, because she is so gullible and listens to every sob story and tries to help too many people. She rented a piece of her property to an alcoholic once who never paid rent. When I finally got him out, he had removed all the inner walls except the ones surrounding the bathroom!
  7. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Thank you all- there is some great advice here! She is supposed to call me back in a couple of days to disscuss it some more, since I'm tied up with difficult child issues right now. Let's hope she hasn't done anything drastic by then.
  8. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I wish you the best luck with this. My husband's mom had 2 houses - one she rented to a coworker. Then her company shut down and offered anyone who wanted to move a job in a different state. They also said they would buy anyone's house who didn't sell in 4 months.

    His mom agreed to sell the house to the girl who was renting it, KNOWING that they were moving with the company. She didn't tell my sister in law about it until it was done and she sold it for over $90,000 under market value. The renter made that $90,000 by selling it to the company.

    husband and I had asked several times to rent it when the lease was up - we wanted to move back to OK. We had even offered to pay her fair market value for the house. she kept saying no because the renter was a receptionist at her office and she felt sorry for the girl because she was just a receptionist (with a husband who made a dang good living as an exec with a large corporation).

    My sister in law hit the roof, and it is the ONLY time she ever called us about a problem with mother in law. husband has no use for his mom now, and no respect for her. She is 80 and still working, now at sister in law's company where sister in law can keep an eye on her. This started because she was dating a guy who cut off all contact with the family for over a year. Then sister in law got a call from the ER to come in because mother in law was hurt. The guy had been beating her, and it took sister in law's husband and son to bully the guy out of her house and life. They threatened to kill him and bury him on the husband's dad's land out in the country. The husband and our nephew are the MOST GENTLE guys on the planet, with total regard for law and order (nephew wants to be a cop) but they sure do LOOK intimidating when mad!

    Anyway, none of us have ever succeeded in getting any financial power of atty over mother in law. I won't be a part of it (not after how she treated my kids), husband has no interest, and sister in law doesn't want to have to listen to mother in law whine.

    I hope and pray you don't end up with such problems with your mom. I think the double sig thing is a great idea.