Foreclosure fiasco hits renters

By Crystal Britt
CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - A local grandmother may be looking for a new place to rent through no fault of her own.  She is becoming part of a growing trend...renters whose landlords get in over their heads.
For seven years, Georgia Wren has rented a home on South Sprigg in Cape Girardeau.
"I hope I get to stay here, I don't like this moving," said Wren.
She's a little worried because the bank foreclosed on the house.  According to the Cape Girardeau County Assessor's Office, the local landlord who owned the house and several others in Cape lost the properties to the bank. The one Georgia Wren's renting appears to be the only occupied home.  The others, like what you'll find on South Pacific, South Ellis and Mill Streets are clearly vacant, and pretty run down.
Georgia Wren says she's now making her rent payment to the bank.
"I thought oh my gosh, I don't want to move and where would I move to?" said Wren.  
Right now local realtors say there's a demand for rentals.
"It was purchased for that purpose," said Bill Cole with Realty Executives. "I think there's a market for that." 
Cole says investors are taking advantage of lower prices.
"There's an opportunity to get into rental properties more so than ever," said Cole.
Heartland News has learned the local foreclosed rental homes, including the one where Wren lives, are now on the market.  Georgia Wren's hoping that the future buyer will keep her home as a rental.  Bill Cole says that's a strong possibility.
"In a case like that when it goes back to a bank, as you know banks do not want to hold and own property, they will find an owner for it and make it a price that's attractive to an investor.  The odds are that investor will leave it as a rental property," said Cole.  
That's exactly what Georgia's wanting.
"I'd live here until I died if I could," said Wren.
Heartland News reached out to the landlord who lost those homes, but he didn't return our calls.