CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Maria Ortega bought a house with conflicting addresses.
The house looks more like a shed.
412 Coke is written in marker and 1821b in spray paint on each side.
The Coke address is written on an outside wall because Ortega says that's the address on the contract she signed with the Markman Brothers when she bought the property, her first home, on June 7, 2018.
"I wrote this. They scratched it off and wrote 1821b," said Ortega.
But, 1821 Lipan Street is the big blue house on the corner of Lipan and Coke.
That's the house Ortega insists she thought she was buying.
"I looked at the property. I didn't know the property was separated. When I told them I wanted the property, they moved me into this house. They never told me that house was included," said Ortega.
Fred Hobbs, a managing member of Markman Brothers, told The Troubleshooters that Ortega planned to fix it up the house and turn it into a rental property.
Hobbs told us the house was deeded to Ortega as an investment property. And she promised not to live it in. He also said Markman Brothers financed a loan for Ortega for $53,500.
He adds that Markman Brothers gave Ortega $4000.00 worth of materials to make repairs to the house so it could be turned into a rental property.
They say those repairs were not made.
Ortega says she's lived here without power or water for a year now. She says the smell coming from this sewer directly in front of her house can be overwhelming at times.
"There's possums, rats, roaches, bees, ants, spiders. I've been bitten by spiders many times," said Ortega.
Ortega compares her house to a storage shed and when she's tried to get city services, she told The Troubleshooters that they've told her that address doesn't exist on their records.
So for those reasons, Ortega decided she wasn't going to pay her $571.00 monthly mortgage payments.
"I wasn't going to be giving them payments on something they couldn't locate."
So Markman Brothers foreclosed on the property and tried to have Ortega evicted. But because the subpoena was sent to 1821 Lipan, not 412 Coke, the eviction was dismissed.
Ortega says she works as a home provider but is currently unemployed.
Regarding the issue with the 412 Coke Street address written on a wall, Hobbs said it’s been on city records for years.
Nueces County Appraisal District Chief Appraiser Ronnie Canales says neither address is correct. It's actually 1823 Lipan Street. He made a personal visit to the property to determine the correct address.
City records show that the address includes Ortega’s house, the main blue house, plus another house.
“It’s very sad, but again, people can take advantage of people, and in this case, I think this is part of what’s been happening to her, and other people perhaps,” Canales said.
He says the appraisal district will go back five years to assess taxes on this property and Markman Brothers will be responsible for paying them.
The Troubleshooters also reached out to the City Attorney’s office.
They responded, saying, records show that utility services at 412 Coke were turned off in April 2019 for unauthorized use.
That account is no longer active since no one has called to re-establish services
The city further adds that 1821B Lipan does not exist in their records.