Story updated from Jan 22.
THE TT Mortgage Finance Company (TTMF) has repossessed 29 properties in different parts of the country for sale. Some of these properties were repossessed last June. Information about these properties is contained on a list posted on the TTMF’s website under the title “for sale by the mortgagee.” A mortgagee is a lender in a mortgage. A lender could be a bank, building society, or savings and loan association.
The properties up for sale include a two bedroom/two bathroom house at Roystonia Housing Development in Couva; a two storey house in Freeport; a 1,130 square foot, two bedroom house in Chaguanas; an incomplete two bedroom house in Cunupia, an incomplete six bedroom house in Arima and empty lots in Maraval, St Augustine, Siparia and San Fernando. Each of the properties are listed for viewing by prospective bidders on different dates in February. The closing date for the submission of bids for these properties is February 22 at 4 pm.
TTMF officials could not comment on why these properties were repossessed. One official explained that would constitute “a breach of confidentiality with our customers.” Another official said there was nothing unusual about 29 properties being repossessed. “The number fluctuates. Sometimes it is high, sometimes low,” that official said.
The process of bidding for repossessed properties is specific. Bidders are invited to view the property on specific dates and fill out a bid form. Bids should be based on current market values.
The TTMF said properties are sold as is. They are subject to rates, taxes and other charges which may be outstanding at the time of sale. Sealed bids, which include contact numbers or e-mail addresses are sent to the collections unit at the TTMF’s Port of Spain office. On bid forms provided by TTMF, applicants must list the sum they are offering for a property, amount for restoration (with a builder’s estimate attached) and a deposit of not less than ten per cent.
Applicants are also required to identify the source of their deposit, evidence of savings and sources of financing. Information such as an applicant’s gross monthly income and whether the applicant owns any real estate must also be included on the bid form. Successful applicants must subsequently take the necessary steps to buy the property within a stipulated time. The TTMF is not bound to accept the highest offer for a property.
The 29 properties are located on either freehold or leasehold land. Freehold property is any land which is “free from hold” of any entity besides the owner. Leasehold land is property held by a tenant for a fixed period of time. At the end of this period, the property returns to the owner. Repossessed properties are often in a poor condition because they have been run down under the previous owners. This could be due to a lack of funds or because they have been empty for a considerable time.