Some Squatting resources (1 Viewer)

gracius

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Here are some zines and resources you may have come across but they should be on here!
1) Its Vacant Take it!
The San Francisco 'Homes not Jails' squat manual. Useful techniques and methodology but with research resources somewhat specific to SF. https://fireworksbayarea.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/ItsVacantTakeit.3rdEdition.pdf
2) Survival without Rent
Classic how-to from NYC in the eighties. A bit dated to say the least. This is the text, the original zine has excellent diagrams and images if you can find it. http://archiv.squat.net/squatbook2/index.pdf
3) Tips 4 Squatting
Another old guide form NYC. http://social-ecology.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/Tips-4-Squatting.pdf
4) Lots of history of squatting plus a few how-to guides here: http://en.squat.net/books/
5) A few mostly england based stories, histories, and guides http://www.squatter.org.uk/resources/publications-about-squatting/
 

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Matt Derrick

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Here are some zines and resources you may have come across but they should be on here!
1) Its Vacant Take it!
The San Francisco 'Homes not Jails' squat manual. Useful techniques and methodology but with research resources somewhat specific to SF. https://fireworksbayarea.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/ItsVacantTakeit.3rdEdition.pdf
2) Survival without Rent
Classic how-to from NYC in the eighties. A bit dated to say the least. This is the text, the original zine has excellent diagrams and images if you can find it. http://archiv.squat.net/squatbook2/index.pdf
3) Tips 4 Squatting
Another old guide form NYC. http://social-ecology.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/Tips-4-Squatting.pdf
4) Lots of history of squatting plus a few how-to guides here: http://en.squat.net/books/
5) A few mostly england based stories, histories, and guides http://www.squatter.org.uk/resources/publications-about-squatting/

thank you for the contributions :)

if you have the time, we have a library here where you can upload these files in case the sites you linked to go away. we also already have one or two of these, but not the others... so upload em! :D
 

Eng JR Lupo RV323

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I've just began digging into these links and I'll continue to search for information but in the meantime, if anyone has a moment to kick down knowledge on the subject, just some basic advice it'd be greatly appreciated.

So my situation is this; We're squatting, but.. we're paying rent to do so.. I realize this isn't how it works but the situation unfolds interestingly and I think it'll make sense once I've written it out. So basically, we were looking for a place to live with room for the dogs. A guy downstairs at the apartment we were renting about a month ago said he handles property for a guy who owns a few rentals. We weren't too sure about it because well.. he's a tweaker. Anyway, we humor him and agree to meet at the house he's supposedly renting out.

We see the house, it's pretty fuckin rad. Built in 1920, sits on an acre of land, lots of garden potential and dog space. We want it, so we talk business with our new potential landlord. He lays it on us, the whole scenario. He broke into a house to squat and noticed a lot of paperwork that led him to believe that home owner had several properties boarded up throughout town. Reads more into it and finds out one of the properties burned in an arson fire, 4 squatters died and foul play was suspected because the fire seemed strategically located at the only possible exit of that squat.

So this guy, our tweaker landlord digs deeper online and realizes the owner seems to have abandoned everything he has here and left out of state, but he tells us he suspects the guy is probably dead. We realize this situation is rather sketchy but knowing minimal basics of how squatting and adverse possession works, I had a feeling this tweaker guy had very little established to connect him to the property he was showing us and that we could probably just slide this place right out from under him, he doesn't own it or know the owner or live on the land so I mean.. what's he got?

So we let him write up his fake ass rental agreement, he puts the real owners name in numerous places and only lists his own in the "rent to be paid to" section. It's as expected a fuckin joke of an agreement but we needed a place and the rent was cheap so we're like whatever.. we'll roll with it like this for now and see what comes of it all. Chances are dude will go back to prison and we'll be rent free, or we can also aim for adverse possession ourselves if things get stupid.

It didn't take long for shit to get stupid, as anticipated. Tweaker landlord, I'll just call him Creeper. He's got one of those stupid jailhouse nicknames nearly identical so that'll work for now. Creeper charges us 1200 to move in, 900 a month is agreed to as rent on the 12th of each coming month. We were cool with that, we'd play his game if he plays his part correctly. Not even a week after paying 1200 he hits us up asking for an advance from us on the next months rent. We shoot him an early 300 just to help the dude out, figuring no biggie it'll make the coming rent only 600 we'll be ahead of shit.

In this time, one of our roommates goes to jail, loses his car and job. Shit gets a little fucked up but we'll get through it. Creeper hits us up again before rent is due for more money, we tell him no can do. Oh, mind you he's in jail all this time on a violation. His chick comes by for their advances and has him call collect, that's how we communicate with him. He got locked up two days after taking our first payment of 1200, probably went on a good one. So anyway, on the 12th of this month we gave creepers chick 400 and told her we're going to need a few days to get the other 200 remaining because hardships have us off point. They come at us with talk of 50 dollars a day late fees beginning on the 12th, saying in three days we already owe 150 in late fees even though the fake rental agreement says late fees wont be charged until rent is late ten days.

Anyway, so it's funny that this guy can't manage money for shit and needs advances on rent but when we need a break he's hella greedy about it. So we're pretty much done playing his game. Ok so also there's this; As it turns out, my uncle lived here 19 years up until 2001 and actually knows the true property owner. Dude is back east and it does appear he's left what property he has here to just fall apart or whatever. So we're kinda tied in tighter to the real owner if we wanted to use that angle than this tweaker guy is. He's living in another one of this guys homes, well once he's out of jail anyway.

Anyway, that's a hell of a situation and I realize it might be hard to follow but the

TL;DR is this; What actions should be taken immediately to get us heading in the direction of adverse possession? We've had all utilities put in our names, that was effective on the 15th of last month so we're 30 days locked in today. We've done extraordinary repairs and upgrades(the four car garage was loaded to the ceiling with building materials, 100+ gallons of paint, lumber screws tools all kinds of shit. I've documented all repairs and taken before and after photos. We've made friends with the neighbors, turns out they've been great friends with my uncle since he lived here 15 years ago. So far four of the other neighbors have approached us separately telling us how happy they are we're here turning the eyesore into something far nicer to look at. I think we have a lot of good shit going on here and we just need to make sure we're doing all we can to secure it.

I guess I'm wondering if there's any sort of paperwork we should try to file? Should we use the money we were giving to the tweaker and just start paying the past due property taxes instead? Should we have a declaration posted in a local news paper stating our position and intent? Is there something I'm missing? Thanks in advance for any insight. Just trying to get this shit rolling before dude gets out of jail in a week supposedly.
 

Matt Derrick

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okay, i am by no means a squatting expert, but i have read a bunch of books on the subject and can probably tell you more about it than most, so here's my advice.

first, stop paying creeper money. immediately. he has virtually no recourse since he doesn't own the property. the only downside to this is if he's really fuckin nuts he might retaliate against you in some way, so keep that in mind but otherwise you're fine.

second (might be best to do before the above) is get some kind of documentation of who the real owner is. this can be just about anything that shows the owner of the property is not creeper. you'll want this in case creeper has the balls to call the cops. the cops can show up at your door and all you'll need to show them is that documentation of the owner of the property, and explain to them that you've been scammed by this creeper guy and you're taking him to court.

this will help establish your situation with the police, and makes them aware that you're not trespassing, but rather have tenant's rights, which means no one can kick you out of the property without going to civil court first. in fact, you might want to call the cops and file fraud charges against creeper since that will likely establish a stronger case and keep creeper off your back, since any kind of retaliation from him is quite illegal at that point.

that will take care of creeper, now on to the squatting / adverse possession part.

you've done a good job so far with documenting the utilities and getting everything in your name. honestly, if you're serious about this i would start a file cabinet and literally save every peice of documentation you can get showing you live on the property and are paying utilities. i'd literally save every month's bills in that file cabinet, since adverse possession can take literally years to establish.

second, i would get a digital camera and literally document the before and after of everything you fix up on the property. upload these pictures to dropbox or google drive or whatever. that way you always have them in case anything happens (fire, etc). document every project! this will go a long way towards establishing adverse possession in the long run.

next you'll want to do some research to find out the specifics of the adverse possession laws in your state. the general ballpark figure for adverse possession is 7 years, but it could be less or more depending on the state you live in.

at that point, it's mostly just a waiting game. i'd probably squirrel away a couple hundred dollars a month for legal fees, for that day when you have to get your adverse possession legally recognized in court. if the owner comes at you at some point in the future, you'll have an established record of improvements, a history of bills establishing residency, and charges against creeper that established how you got onto the property in the first place (i.e. not breaking in). hell, if you're really lucky, you might be able to get back the money from creeper in court if you want to go that far (i would).

all that makes a strong case for adverse possession in court, or if you lose the case somehow, it's a possibility that you could perhaps be compensated for your time/labor/cost of improvements to the property.

good luck man! and if it works out, can we have a future jamboree at your place? :p
 
K

Kim Chee

I deleted myself
@Eng JR Lupo RV323

California adverse possession (readers digest version)
http://statelaws.findlaw.com/california-law/california-adverse-possession-laws.html

California Adverse Possession Laws

Depending on how one looks at it, adverse possession can either seem like an unfair of theft of land by squatters or a justified grant to someone who will actually put the property to good use. Or maybe you’ve never heard of adverse possession before. So how does it work, and what are the particulars in the Golden State? Here is a brief introduction to adverse possession laws in California.

Adverse Possession

When someone publicly moves into and improves an otherwise neglected property, he or she may acquire title to that property after a certain amount of time has passed. This is called "adverse possession," based on the notion that land should not sit idle. These protections are not valid if the possession of the property is done in secret. California adverse possession laws require at least five years of possession and payment of taxes throughout that period in order to be eligible for legal title.

Adverse Possession in California

State adverse possession laws can vary significantly. The following table highlights the basics of California’s adverse possession law.

Code Section

Civ. Proc. §§318, 325, 328

Time Period Required for Occupation

5 yrs. and Payment of Taxes

Time for Landowner to Challenge/Effect of Landowner's Disability

With disability: 20 yrs.; After disability lifted: 5 yrs.

Improvements

-

Payment of Taxes

5 years required

Title from Tax Assessor

-

Generally, there are four elements to a valid adverse possession claim:

  • Hostile Claim - The trespasser must either:
    • make an honest mistake (such as relying on an incorrect deed),
    • merely occupy the land (with or without knowledge that it is private property); or
    • be aware of his or her trespassing.
  • Actual Possession - The trespasser must be physically present on the land, treating it as his or her own.
  • Open and Notorious Possession - The act of trespassing cannot be secret.
  • Exclusive and Continuous Possession - Trespasser cannot share possession with others, and must be in possession of the land for an unbroken period of time.
Related Resources for Adverse Possession Laws

Real estate law can be complicated, especially where concepts like adverse possession are concerned. If you would like to discuss your case with an lawyer or if you want to know your rights and responsibilities as a landowner or occupier, you can schedule a consultation with an experienced real estate attorney in California. You can also do your own research and find more general information on this topic in FindLaw’s adverse possession section.
 

Eng JR Lupo RV323

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@Matt Derrick @Kim Chee @Viking_Adventurer

Thank you all for the time and energy, lots of good information there. A brief update since I've kinda inadvertently hijacked this post and it doesn't seem like it fits elsewhere at the moment; We stopped paying the shady "landlord"(who's still in jail btw) immediately and ended all communication with his dodgy GF he "left in charge of things". She sent a text to all my roommates and I that she hated the color of the house and was bringing "a can of paint" over and wanted it painted again immediately. She went on to say she didn't approve of us making such drastic changes to the place and felt we needed to be reminded that they own this property, not us. She further explained "the difference between my old man and me is I'll just start the eviction process immediately if you guys continue to ignore my texts/calls, and my old man will bring ten of his crazy ass tattooed homies over there to toss you guys out, you're lucky he's still in jail and I'm nicer"

It was comical, I'm pretty sure she thinks a house can be painted with one can. Also funny the mention of "tattooed homies" as if tattoos a supposed to make a person more intimidating or something. I wrote her a response that said in short;

"The actual owner of this place isn't dead as you originally tried telling us, he's very much so alive. The neighbors know him well and put a call out, he's fucking livid that his place was broken into and then rented out illegally. You wrote his name all over the illegal rental agreement you made up, as if he was involved. He's sending an associate over to take pictures and we're still not sure whether or not they're going to file a police report or what but considering you guys are living in another one of this mans abandoned homes you might want to lay really fucking low because shit has hit the fan. We haven't told him who you two are or that you're in his other house, and we don't intend to but if we have any uninvited guests show up, particularly ten uninvited crazy ass guests with tattoos, I should remind you the police department is not but 1200 feet around the corner and they will be receiving a call immediately. There's no telling how things will play out from there, given your guy is in custody on parole violation and you're being arraigned in October and on parole yourself. I'd tread lightly and count your blessings, you're still in this property owners other place and that's probably a lot nicer than a jail cell."

She was so up our ass in texts and dropping by unannounced until she received that message. We haven't heard a fuckin peep out of her since the 21st of September when it was sent. Creeper is still in jail and it appears his parole was revoked for violating, he's got additional felony charges and it's looking like he's dunzo for two years at least. She's banging another dude apparently and we're pretty sure their entire everything is falling to pieces because.. well, meth. Lots and lots of meth, stay off meth kids. We're not sleeping very well at night, wondering if this is a calm before the storm still to come? I'm constantly prowling around with my mossberg 590 tactical shotgun peering out windows when the dogs bark till like 5am.. I sometimes laugh at myself like "yo, who's the real tweaker here? Go to bed dude quit worrying so much!" but it's hard. I know on one hand any rational person would take the message I sent her and realize they do still in fact have a good thing going, and they just got too greedy trying to rent out additional shit they didn't own. I feel like that's where she's at.. but, tweakers are unpredictable and I won't make the mistake of assuming she's thinking rationally.

Anyhow, long story short; We're on track here and everything is lining up swell. We'll own this place on or around 8/11/2021 so long as the real muthafucka doesn't show up and fuck off what we're trying to do. Assuming things stay on the rails, @Matt Derrick ~ "if it works out, can we have a future jamboree at your place?" It would be an honor, my friend. It's only an acre, I.. don't know what these jamborees usually turn out like but there's an acre out there and it's legitimately a squat so the theme certainly fits, but will the people? Probably, I mean I can see room for probably 80 large sized tents out there in the back lot, surely these things don't bring thousands of heads I wouldn't imagine. It's not really the coolest of locations, the nearest mainline is like 12 miles away and they stopped CC'ing here from what I can tell. But yeah.. if ever there's a need for a place to host an event and it's deemed suitable in size, it's all yours brother.
 

VikingAdventurer

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@Eng JR Lupo RV323 , this is a great update, thank you!

The whole situation honestly does sound quite comical. Have you considered writing a screenplay based on these experiences and submitting it to a TV network? Maybe the part of you could be played by Nathan Fillion! Lmao.

I'm glad to hear that things are/will be turning out in your favor.
 

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