Realtors offering quick cash to Maui owners

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In the aftermath of the lethal wildfires that destroyed the town of Lahaina on Maui in Hawaii, residents whose homes burned to the ground are receiving solicitations from off-island real estate investors to scoop up their land.

The unsolicited purchase offers, which experts characterize as predatory given their proximity to the devastation caused by the fires, have spurred local authorities to take action to protect residents grappling with the death of loved ones, as well as the loss of their homes and livelihoods.

The August 8 fires killed at least 115 people, making them the deadliest in the U.S. in more than a century, and officials have said the toll is likely to rise. Maui County officials on Thursday released the names of 388 people who remain unaccounted for.

Maui resident Goldean Lowe, who owns a home in Napili just north of Lahaina, said she has been solicited by five separate entities offering to buy her house, which was not affected by the wildfires. She operates a clinic serving youth with autism spectrum disorders in Lahaina. That building also survived.

Lowe said she was “dismayed and disturbed” by the tone of the emails that arrived in her inbox shortly after the fires had scorched the area. One offer came from an individual identifying himself as “part of a small group of real estate Investors who buy homes in and around Lahaina.”


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Chuck comes from a lineage of journalism. He has written for some of the webs most popular news sites. He enjoys spending time outdoors, bull riding, and collecting old vinyl records. Roll Tide!