Jaymie Kelly, a homeowner fighting her foreclosure in the Eviction Free Zone of south Minneapolis, had a court victory today when a judge dismissed an illegal eviction attempt by Freddie Mac. Although Freddie Mac now has the option to refile for eviction, this victory buys Jaymie more time as she attempts to negotiate with Chase Bank and Freddie Mac to stay in her home of 30 years.
After a public campaign demanding Chase Bank negotiate with Jaymie, including thousands of petition signatures, phone calls, protests at bank branches, and support from city council members and mayoral candidates Gary Schiff and Betsy Hodges, Chase agreed to review her case for a modification. Jaymie received a letter from Chase stating they would give her an answer by June 7th, and another from the Minnesota Attorney General’s office affirming that Freddie Mac had agreed to hold off on moving forward with an eviction for 30 days, until June 16th at the earliest.
Nevertheless, when Jaymie arrived, a lawyer representing Freddie Mac immediately pressured her to sign a document stating she agreed to move out. “How can I have two letters from JP Morgan Chase, and a letter from the Attorney General, stating they’re working with me, and a Freddie Mac lawyer trying to force me to sign a document agreeing I will move out? It’s inconceivable,” said Jaymie Kelly.
Over the years, Jaymie has paid $425,000 for a house valued at $81,000. When Chase foreclosed on her, she still had $255,000 remaining on her loan.
“There’s nothing stopping Chase and Freddie Mac from offering Jaymie a new mortgage with affordable payments based on the fair market value of her house,” said Ginger Jentzen, an organizer with Occupy Homes MN. “Jaymie’s case makes it clear why resetting these inflated mortgages to their market value is so important.”
Jaymie, whose home on 38th Street and 11th Avenue is known for its blue and white cow sculptures, has lived on her block of Powderhorn for 55 years. “My life is a banyan tree, and my roots are in this community,” said Jaymie. “At this point I’ve paid for my home five times over. I am not leaving.”