San Fransisco, August 11 (Bizarre News) - I didn't know this, but apparently you can buy a street. That is what a Chinese-born couple living in San Francisco did.
It looks like it's all legal, above-board and will probably end up being very profitable for the two. And it all happened because a bunch of one percenters living in multi-million dollar homes couldn't be bothered to pay $994 in back-taxes.
Tina Lam and Michael Cheng came across the deal in April 2015 when looking for property bargains in San Francisco. They discovered that the private street had been put up for a city auction because its property homeowners' association hadn't paid the annual $14 county property tax in 30 years.
Presidio Terrace, the most prestigious street in the city, was for sale because of a mere $994 in back-taxes, fines and interest.
The couple, who live in San Jose, put their winning $90,100 bid down without even checking out the property first.
Over the past two years the residents of the gated street have gone about their business, unaware that the asphalt, sidewalks, manicured islands, plants and palm trees surrounding them were now owned by the couple.
In the intervening two years, Lam and Cheng have been looking at ways to monetize their newly acquired plot. Eventually they decided that they could charge 'a reasonable rent' for the 120 parking spaces on the street.
The locals only found out that they'd lost their land when they were contacted to see if they were interested in buying it back. They were not pleased.
But city spokeswoman Amanda Fried was unapologetic.
'Ninety-nine percent of property owners in San Francisco know what they need to do, and they pay their taxes on time,' she said.