‘Extreme’ Dream Gone Bust
Three years ago Patricia and Milton Harper received a gift courtesy of reality television. ABC’s Extreme Makeover Home Edition came to the rescue, demolishing the Harper’s old run down home with a faulty septic tank and replacing it with a 5,300 square-foot, two-story dream home in Lake City, Georgia.
When the show first aired back on February 20, 2005, the home was the largest ever built in a week by the show. The home, built with the help of 1,800 volunteers and Atlanta-based Beazer Homes, is now scheduled for public foreclosure auction on August 5.
As so many people have done, the Harpers made the unfortunate error of using the home as an ATM machine. The couple borrowed $450,000 in equity as collateral to finance Mr. Harper’s construction business, which went bust. Now the beautiful mansion with a three-car garage on Ahyoka Drive is going to be sold next week on the Clayton County courthouse steps by JPMorgan Chase Bank, according to RealtyTrac.
A published report by the Associated Press says that in addition to building the home with $450,000 worth of donated labor and materials, the partners and employees at Beazer also contributed $250,000 for the family, including scholarships for the three children and a home maintenance fund.
For its part, the ABC television network told the AP that it advises every family on the show to consult with a financial planner after receiving their new home.
Still, for a potential homebuyer or investor looking for a newer property in a suburb of Atlanta, this is probably one of those properties that will go back to the bank as an REO. Most investors won’t touch a property like this, which probably has little or no equity, since they are looking for a discounted price. And most home buyers are looking for a deal below market value. So look for a listing on the local MLS soon.