JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A local woman was left homeless after she found out that the home she purchased was rented right after she bought it.
The house on Hunt Street was seen as the perfect house to first-time home buyer Paula Mitchell.
"I had it inspected everything was clear to go," Mitchell said.
In November, she signed a sale agreement with the seller David Taylor. Mitchell signed it November 1 and Taylor signed it two days later. The agreed price was $118,000.
However, the day of the sale came and went.
"He's in default, he's in default," said Derrick Hartley, Mitchell's real estate agent from Trinity Real Estate.
Hartley said he discovered the house was occupied.
It appears that Taylor had decided to lease out the house even though the sale contract was pending, he said.
"I called the police and they had a lease,'' Hartley said. "I called the number on the lease and it was to David Taylor's office."
Taylor is a Jacksonville attorney who has had his share of problems. The Florida Bar suspended Taylor's licensed in 2011 and he was publicly reprimanded in 2016.
The sale of the house on Hunt Street was expected Monday, December 18, but Taylor did not show for the closing.
"He said he had not heard from his realtor in eight weeks, which is not true,' Hartley said.
If he did not want to sell the house, Mitchell said he has that right, but that was never stated.
"I could have understood if he had said 'hey I don't want to sell the home anymore, but no one in his office told me about it," she said. "It hurt me to the core that I lost my home."
Mitchell was taking advantage of the city's first-time homebuyers program. It crosses the threshold of home ownership and now she is back to square one.
"I've got to start all over again," she said.
Her current mortgage loan approval is good for thirty days. If she's unable to buy another home within that time frame, she has to qualify again and she may lose first-time home buyers down payment assistance.
She said this fiasco has already cost her $2,000.
"We are going to sue him," Hartley said. "I will put my money up. We will sue him, she should be compensated."
On Your Side spoke with David Taylor who said he was in West Florida.
"I was looking forward to closing," Taylor said. "I was told it would be last Wednesday and I leased the house Thursday after the lending fell through. I hate this. My realtor let me down."
But the title company said the closing date never changed, it was always December 18 and as recently as Thursday, December 14, it was still showing December 18.
"At no time did anyone from our office ever indicate that the closing schedule for Monday, December 18 was canceled," wrote Sandra Ralston, the attorney for the title company.
Mitchell will search for a new home but plans to take this to court and plans to file a complaint with the Florida Bar.