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Posts published in “Equity Erased”

Equity Erased, Part 2: Imperfectly Legal: Forced Sales Hurt Heirs, Poor Homeowners

Part 2: Asheville-area investors exploit Jim Crow-era law

Five hundred dollars was all it took for Robert Perry Tucker II to gain an interest in an Asheville home that had been owned by a Black family since 1918. 

Two elderly heirs signed deeds selling their shares of the home to a Tucker company for $250 apiece. With their ownership in hand, Tucker’s company used a Reconstruction-era law to force a sale of the entire property, and another Tucker company bought it at auction for $3,750.

The eight heirs whose family had owned the property for a century received $445 each, the auction commissioner reported. The Tucker company that bought the property sold it in three months for $55,000.

Robert Tucker, left, and his attorney, Peter Henry, at an April hearing held virtually in Buncombe County Superior Court.READ MORE

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Equity Erased, Part 1: Real Estate Deals Strip Elderly, Poor of Homes, Land, and Inheritances

In Part 1 of our series, a local investor is accused of fraud

Mary Thompson lost 17 years of home equity. Photo credit: Pat Barcas, Asheville Watchdog

Many were elderly or Black homeowners in distress. Some were vulnerable to a Reconstruction-era property law abused so often that it has been rewritten in other states, but not North Carolina.

And most were left embittered or poorer by their encounters with Buncombe County real estate investor Robert Perry Tucker II, who acquired their houses and lands at far below market rates, a year-long Asheville Watchdog investigation found.

In a review of more than four dozen of Tucker’s real estate transactions since 2014, Asheville Watchdog found his companies have acquired interests in Buncombe properties for as little as $250 — or nothing at all. Many of the sales appear to have generated profits for Tucker while erasing years if not generations of home equity for property owners, nearly half of them Black.

Tucker, an attorney,

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