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The Great Squat: America's Housing Hustle?

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Season 1 | Episode 12

Meet guests who have battled to get illegal house squatters out of their properties.

Squatting is on the rise in America. In fact, some even say it’s reached epidemic proportions. There are 16 million vacant homes in the U.S. and of those homes, 25% are being occupied illegally by squatters. Experts believe the rise in squatting is in response to skyrocketing rents and mortgage rates which are contributing to the current housing crisis. Dr. Phil speaks to Patti who had squatters move into her vacant home, doing $40k of damage. When she called the police, the squatters produced a fraudulent lease, and Patti was told that SHE could be arrested for trespassing on her OWN property. Then, joining the conversation are the Sicilian Brothers, Nick and Tony, property investors who say they have been dealing with squatters for years- including one who is refusing to leave their property now. They say they’ve had 10’s of thousands of dollars in damages done to their property as well as dead animal left on a lawn, and a fire set in retaliation for taking their property back. Dr. Phil also speaks with Barry, a real estate broker and “squatter remover,” who says he’s removed over 100 squatters from homes in the last 5 years and that the law is on the squatters’ side- not the legal owners/residents. Finally, Dr. Phil speaks with Kristine, a real estate agent who says she educates people about adverse possession laws, helping them legally take land that doesn’t belong to them.


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