An immense joy and a great relief. That is what the residents of the neighborhood of La Canteras, in Buenavista del Norte, felt when yesterday their lawyer informed them that the justice system paralyzed the eviction scheduled for today, at 10:00 am.
“It has been a respite in the great struggle we have had these days,” Melody Salazar Luis, one of those affected, confessed to this newspaper. The homes, belonging to a private development of Roycasa, were acquired by a vulture fund after the company lost ownership of them last year.
In his case, he had already moved some belongings to the living room of his grandmother’s house and others to his mother’s, in the absence of removing some electrical appliances yesterday afternoon, but it will no longer be necessary.
With the same speed that they collected their things in the last three days, they also unpacked them yesterday afternoon, despite the fact that until the last moment the situation “was desperate.”
There were neighbors who considered the option of setting up a tent, having nowhere to go and not being able to pay a rent that did not exceed 400 euros. In the morning, without knowing the court decision yet, you could see outside the building vans from transport companies waiting for those affected to finish loading their belongings, some with the uncertainty of not knowing where they would sleep tonight.
Like Dimarsa, mother of three children and who has lived in the building for eight years, since 2015. In these last days she dedicated herself “to looking for a life, talking to the City Council and studying options for her three children.” Her case was one of the five that were pending a vulnerability report, since the judge required it so that her eviction would be null and void.
Alicia’s family is also in the same situation. Her husband has a 70% disability and is the mother of a teenage son. “We spent a lot of nerves; at least today we will be able to sleep well, ”she declared.
Like most of his neighbors, he also had nowhere to go. He managed to take his furniture to a storage room that he paid for so as not to lose his belongings, not knowing where he was going to sleep when he left his house, where he has lived for nine years.
According to the lawyer for the affected families, the process is full of all kinds of irregularities and each of the contracts had to be analyzed due to the modification of the law in March 2019. This required individual trials and appearances for each home. that were extended until February of this year, because it was necessary to determine if the title was valid or not.
One of the requirements until then in this type of process was to have the lease registered in the Property Registry, a condition that most do not meet, but that is required by law.
Among the anomalies found, there were 2012 contracts that had not been renewed, but continued to pay rent. The foreclosure orders are from 2015; Since then, the bank filed a lawsuit against the promoter, because it did not pay the mortgage and, even so, it continued to make contracts without being able to do them legally. The last of them dates from more than a year ago, when the property had already been acquired by a vulture fund, which to this day has not even changed the ownership of the light or fixed the work light, and on three occasions the power company has tried to cut it off.
But perhaps the most serious is that they were supposedly officially protected homes with provisional qualification, which was never raised to final, because Roycasa did not carry out the appropriate procedures to obtain the certificate of occupancy and the certificate of completion of work, necessary for the City Council to Grant the first occupation permits for any home and, above all, for a VPO with final qualification.