Vance Residents Ask For Governor's Help In Fight Against Real Estate Company
Posted March 18, 2004 10:30 a.m. EST
RALEIGH, N.C. — Some Vance County residents who have either lost their homes or are about to lose them went to the governor's office Wednesday to ask for help.
Two years ago, businesswoman Deryl Van Williams started a foundation to help people who bought mobile homes from Creative Real Estate in Henderson. She claimed the mortgage deals created by the company are illegal.
"The payments have gone for some from $600, $800 to $1,200," she said.
Michelle Skipwith blames Creative Real Estate and its owner, Donald Gupton, for her housing problems.
"When we went to closing, the cost was different than what he quoted us in the office," she said. "It was higher and he knew we couldn't afford that. We ended up with the house anyway."
The Skipwiths tried to make their monthly payments, but they could not. As a result, the bank foreclosed.
"I felt we got put out in the street -- me and my husband and three kids," Skipwith said.
The state attorney general is suing Gupton for allegedly deceiving customers and lenders. While that case goes to court, Williams wants the governor to help the people who lost their homes. She said the state should spend more money on low-income housing in Henderson instead of helping build a new cultural complex in the area.
"Eating is our priority. You can't enjoy the North Carolina Symphony if you are not eating," Williams said.
Gupton referred WRAL to his attorney for comment. His attorney did not return calls to WRAL.